Not to take anything away from the Lord, but a sword cut me deeper once Lecrae lyrics moved forward and towards my mental. His words were fluent and congruent to a life not so gentle. He lived a life that wasn’t right but staying in it? No, he was never meant to. I sat in churches but was it worth it? What appeared in these verses didn’t seem too familiar to my surface. Then I was introduced to Lecrae’s album, my friend, she asked me “have you heard this?” From 2012 to now, it became easier to know my true purpose. That’s not at all to say that the bible verses are worthless — Mathews 11 :28–30 if you refer this, I came to God weak but did it through Kendrick, Lecrae and J. Cole — these are the wordsmiths when I want to be meek and mild, I’m black and mild, but as a child I remained without a smile and searched deep for hope. I didn’t think I would avoid suicide based off of something a rapper wrote.
The bible is a cure but you can’t say that people aren’t still breathing due to listening to Jermaine’s “Love Yourz.”
People like and love what they can see, what they can touch and what ultimately proves itself to be a factor in hope; I loved President Obama for that. When we see artists like J. Cole actually get into the communities and hear out the issues that are playing its tunes in the poverty-stricken areas, there’s faith and collaboration. I can name more songs that helped me through depression than I can verses from a preacher; I personally never retained the information. I can separate the good from the bad and what music provides for me, is hope and instills my beliefs–furthering my guidance with a higher power.
“Sometimes I think that these verses can help a person
Way more than the ones they readin’ in churches on days of worship
No disrespect to the Lord and Savior, that ain’t just ego
I just observe that them words no longer relate to people
‘Cause modern times be flooded with dollar signs
And social media stuntin’, my niggas just wanna shine” — J. Cole “Want You to Fly”
Because of the internet, a lot has changed. I personally find myself needing a break from digital interactions more than physical interactions; both world’s become too much. There’s a lot of information to also consume on the net. Technology in general has put a hammer to the nail of our existence. Although the bible holds foundation, we cannot deny that a lot has changed and that’s where my agreement with Cole comes in to play.
“Social media stuntin” and people see this lifestyle and want it. People go broke to live an image that doesn’t help secure their bank account. I turn to find friends and others seek comfort in the jewelry, such foolery. “Silver and gold is too low for the soul,” as rapper KB taught me. Which is why I strike my pen against paper, my keyboard to reach a document and my internal being to be at peace without being pieced together with nothing but income—having wealth inside the mind as well.
Lecrae helped me understand that I didn’t know God and that I only knew of God; I begun my spiritual journey in a different light after that realization. I didn’t ask for my wake up call through his music, it just happened that way. When you’re lost, you compass your way out, in hopes to compress pain, suffering and any lack of confusion.
This isn’t a story to tell you how a rapper is more important than the Word, it’s to show my reflection upon rappers showing me a different way to the world and beyond it, while still highlighting important messages that needs to be heard. We do not all live the same. We get information, learn, think, act and do different things; reintroduction to individuality.
This is nothing to relate to, but this was how I found relation to it.
“This is where the fathers ain’t living, at least not with us,” J. Cole once said. I relate to that and for that reason, I looked to other men as role models and father-like figures. I learned early that two people can deliver the same message, but sometimes only one is heard by the seeker who seeks information. Nas told me “the world is yours” and I believed him. Lecrae told me I can gain the entire world and still end up empty-handed. Kendrick Lamar and J. Cole taught me that there’s a bigger purpose behind my life. Inconsistent father figures, so I figure I’d follow other voices in order to learn how to make figures, avoid being bitter and how to pull the trigger on life.