By Jayvon Johnson, Staff Writer
This is a letter for every Young King with his head down in these current days…
Jesus affirmed His disciples by calling them friends, by commending them on their righteous works and their faith, and by trusting them with increasingly more responsibility (John 15:14-15; 20:21; 21:15-17). When Jesus affirmed His followers, He increased their confidence. He empowered them to believe they could take on the world. And in the book of Acts, they did take on the world – and they influenced and changed the world for Christ. More than ever before in your life, God is strengthening, commanding you and increasing your responsibilities. I can’t tell you how my life has shifted since understanding God’s purpose in my life. I have walked away from the things I grew familiar with to embark on an assignment from God, one that I am giving all of my trust and all that I am. Like me, in this moment He is asking more of you as a leader.
The Call on My Life
At this milestone in my life, I have dealt with situations that have tested my values, faith and emotional mind-state. Through them, I have persevered against the odds and become a person that I am proud of. I have grown to have self-awareness, built off of my weakness, and used them as stepping-stones for my future. I was raised in lower middle class Durham NC, in a Christian household, with two hard working parents, who set out to provide more for me than what was allotted to them. I have witnessed and been a victim of a socioeconomic environment that doesn’t prepare you to be an asset to your community or the world. I am first of my siblings to complete high school let alone attend college. The long hours and back breaking labor my father completed during his 54 years on this earth, from drug addict to Chef Manager of Duke University, Chairman of the Trustee Board, community “Dad” and owning his own lawn care service has motivated me to continue in the hard work and well-built legacy that he left here on this earth. One of the many lessons my father has always taught me growing up and until his passing on August 11, 2012 is “may the life I live speak for me,” let whatever you do while you live impact everyone around you more positively, leaving your mark in their hearts and minds.
Your Road to the Throne
You must be the change you wish to see in this world. You have accepted the first step in your call, to impact your generation head on through academics and professional development. It is by no accident that you are rising to the occasion, it has already been preordained for your success to influence your friends and family for greater. As I stated in my own personal story, it is not unfamiliar for the trials of life to shake you up and toss you around. So I get it, this calling, this opportunity to improve your life may not have come easy, nor will the remaining of your journey be easy as pie. You WILL lose friends; those who you thought could stand the test of time and would be proud of your every accomplishment. You WILL be treated as if the color of your skin out weighs your dialectic dialogue, intellectual aptitude, and hunger for more. But, I encourage you to strive forward KING. I charge you to push the envelope on topics that you are passionate about. I charge you to stimulate your mind though new things and ideas, to return to your communities to mentor, inspire, educate, and give knowledge to the prince who is just looking for the same door as you.
Shakespeare reminds us “Uneasy lies the head that wears a crown”. Though your nights will be long and the road rocky, your crown awaits you. Hold your head up young KING; the thrown is only the beginning to your reign.