Let it be known that kids also play dirty political games! Ayana was only five years old like I was at the time, yet she was taller than most. But if you glued your ears to the walls of our house in the middle of a hot afternoon, you'd hear her laughter all the way from the playground, laughing at whoever was a whimsical weakling and could not climb the swing.
Once I heard it, I would close my ears so tight with my palms, and tears would begin to fall. My parents thought I had a disorder, maybe "Attention Deficit Disorder," but they did not do anything about it. Once I caught them discussing it with the good neighbor, then I saw them laughing together. I do not think they understood the real reason why I cried every afternoon. Maybe because other symptoms also persisted: I would refuse also to go out to the swing area to join the rest of my siblings, I wanted to be with mummy and daddy all the time...morning, noon, and night. They thought I was old enough by now. But I sure wasn't as brave as little red riding hood. Oh, there was something else. When mama took my hands at 7 O' Clock, and we went for a stroll in the park, I would notice that all the kids had left with their own mamas and I would release my mother's grasp and run to the swing. But I always made sure to stand far away from it, many inches in front. So that when Ayana came the next day she would not even smell my footsteps. I would not climb. I would not swing. I was not as strong as the rest. Too afraid that I would be too weak to hold it and would fall.
But this crazy day came, and it was not as hot as the rest of the days the week before. I felt different today because it was my sixth birthday. At lunch, I told my older siblings defiantly (with head held up high) that I would be going to the playground with them. My parents looked at each other, but pretended they did not hear what I said. I was too excited and finished my meal before everyone. On this day, Ayana and the rest of the kids were there. She was watching me with those big white eyes as I took those steps to stand in front of the swing, poised to laugh, ready to pick on me. Slooossssh. Slooooosh. Sleeeeasssh. The leaves were crumbling under my feet as I stepped forward. The girl on the swing got up and gestured that I could get on. The swing called my name and I smiled. I took a hold of it and sat down. The wind worked with me and lifted me up...higher and higher...until I started to laugh...
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Who told you that you couldn't do it? Everything you think you cannot do is all inside a figment of your imagination. Who told you that you're different from the fire-releasing ministers, or the too-good-to-be-true people of the world? Who told you that you cannot make heaven? Who told you that you can't be forgiven?
The swing is right there, waiting to work with the winds on your behalf. Just silently waiting to take you higher and higher. Throw the notion that you cannot do "it," whatever your "it" is, away into the dust-bin. Because you can! Yes, you can run with your visions, goals, aspirations, and desires. You can even be the person who Jesus spoke about in the book of Matthew, when He said, "Be the light of the world and the salt of the earth."
The problem is that you're looking at someone else. Someone you think is stronger than you are. Someone you think is more of a leader than you are. Someone who will laugh at you when you tell them who you want to become. But you need to look at yourself and see the treasure inside of you. You can become a president, an ambassador, a King, a Queen, a CEO, an entrepreneur, or any other thing of empowerment...if you only look inside you. You can also come to know God more if you tell yourself that you can do it.
The swings are waiting...the winds are not blowing yet, until you hop on for the long haul.
"You are the salt of the earth; but if the salt loses its flavor, how shall it be seasoned? It is then good for nothing but to be thrown out and trampled underfoot by men. You are the light of the world, a city set on a hill cannot be hidden." Matthew 5: 13-14
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