'Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. . And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”-Marianne Williamson
As I reflect on the topic of mentorship as we approach this years celebration of the life of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., I begin to think of the sincere purpose that we are called to live here on earth. We are called to make a contribution to the lives of others. Yet, as we have gained more access to material success, we have strayed away from the thoughts of community.
It is our duty and responsibility for us to look out for one another. It is without question there is a misunderstanding for any of us to believe that we have made it solely on our own. While intellect and skill count for something, there has been someone who has advocated on our behalf for us to reach certain levels of success in life. Someone took the chance and vouched for our character, capability, or natural born talent. Someone thought enough of us to extend guidance to expand our horizons, and push us beyond our comfort levels. Someone has inspired us to be our best. Someone encouraged to stay focused despite adversity. Someone makes us recognize that we, too, impact the world.
As I am a recording artist, I realize that I stand on the shoulders of those who have come before me. I realize that it is my responsibility to motivate and incite change in others.
Inspired by musical greats such as Marvin Gaye's, 'What's Going On?' and Teddy Pendergrass', 'Wake Up Everybody?', my first single, 'Bulletproof' featuring Ludacris from my upcoming album, The Love and War Masterpeace, was written as a song to discuss the social ills that continue to plague our society. I am pleasantly surprised about the positive response that the song has received.
I wrote the song to make people pay attention to what is going on in the world and their local community. Oftentimes, entertainers are labeled as role models and held accountable to live as such. Yet, we must remember the everyday stars who walk amongst us.
We must applaud those who have overcome harsh circumstances to not become negative stereotypical images shown in the media.
We must salute our teachers and community leaders who care and give selflessly everyday to ensure that our children are prepared for the world that awaits them. However, we must all realize that everyone has the opportunity to be leaders.
There are more than enough qualified positive young men and women throughout the country and world who are mentors who shape the lives of the youth. Let us not neglect the power of the peer mentor for we also can empower one another towards positive change.
In closing, I leave you with a quote by Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr, “Life's most persistent and urgent question is, 'What are you doing for others?'
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