Thursday, June 23, 2005

More To This Life- Toya
This is a timeless song by Steven Curtis Chapman that Tia and I have loved forever. An oldie but a goodie.

Nothing brings your life into perspective quite like death. When someone passes away, the little things that trouble you such as your career or what guy you're in love with this week, seem so stupid and pointless. I am bringing this up because we just got back from a benefit show that we did at a club for a friend of ours who is mourning the loss of his best friend and business partner, Nathan. Nathan, who was only a year older than me, drowned a few weeks ago in Mexico. I remember being in shock because I just saw him a few days prior to his death. He was so beautiful; dark skinned, dreadlocks, bright smile. I remember seeing him at one of our shows and thinking "DO NOT go over there and talk to him. Don't even try it." Sad to say, I don't regret us not actually meeting. From what I understand, he was very special and a sweet human being. It's tough enough for me just dealing with the fact that I just saw him a few weeks back for the first time never knowing that it would be for the last time.

We played in a lounge/bar type joint, the kind of place that I never imagined playing in a million years. If you have ever heard Renee's music, it obviously talks about Jesus. But people, all kinds of people, really dig it. We arrive and there are quite a few drunk people there and some girls dancing on each other right in front of the stage. The group right before us was cussin' and had a song about how much they love to get high. Then we, two 5'2 black girls, one with punk rock hair and the other one (me) looking all militant with a camouflage skirt and a t-shirt that says "Soul Sista" get on the stage with our happy, go lucky Christian music. This was no where near our best show. I couldn't even hear myself through my headphones and wound up taking them off and throwing them under the table. Even though my attitude was jacked up when I got there late and I wasn't expecting to be there longer than 45 minutes, God did something amazing because suddenly, the vibe changed. Suddenly, people stopped what they were doing and started watching us.

We get off of the stage and someone takes Renee to the back to talk to her about more shows. I walk through the crowd and people are stopping me saying "Thank you". It was so odd. I didn't quite understand until we went in the back and a lady stopped us and told us that she was one of Nathan's best friends. She told us that she went to his funeral and found no closure but when she came and saw us, something spiritual happened and she found her closure. She thanked us repeatedly as she fought back her tears. She told us stories about Nathan and about what kind of person he was and how he would have loved to see us. NEVER have I been so humbled, felt so small and felt so incredibly unworthy to be used by God in my entire life.

I thanked her for sharing with us and choked back my own tears. We place so much value on little things. My priorities immediately shifted as I walked back to my car. Renee and I talked about the future and here on out, I believe that things are really going to change in me. The things that I sweat will not matter in eternity but I can purposely aim to achieve things that will positively affect others' place in eternity. When I walked around the lounge I saw so many people hurting and not because they have lost their friend but because they themselves are lost . This has definitely affected the way I choose to live my life.

As much of a struggle as it is, I have to set my mind on heavenly things. I have to go with what I know God told me last, even though it doesn't make sense. None of this makes sense! How did I get here? The first person I called when after this all happened was our friend Damien Horne. Damien is known as Mista D but he is also affectionately known as The Minister among his Muzik Mafia friends. So I called him at about a quarter to 12, pouring my heart out about how hard this is to see people like this and how hard it is to accept this responsibility. I knew that through all my rambling he would understand and he did. He deals with it every week. I have always prayed for him but now that I got a little taste of what he goes through, I will definitely step it up a notch.

This has also changed the way I feel about what kind of person that I want to walk this out with for the rest of my life. Let's just put it this way: Ross is cool and so is everybody else that has randomly (but not so randomly) walked into my life for a reason. Looking back , I am understanding what God is trying to show me and if it is what I think it is, WOW. We'll see.

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