Inclusion Rider

Upon accepting her much-deserved Oscar for Best Actress, Francis McDermott left the Academy with two words: inclusion rider. What is an inclusion rider? The stipulation in an actor or actresses’ contract that requires diversity in the film in which they are part.

Although her call for inclusion specifically targeted women, I am no less affected by it. I am a brown-skinned man who dreams of doing rom-coms. In the past, it was not our place to be the romantic lead. Or any lead other than the villain. But things are changing. There is Aladdin and West Side Story and Black Panther. In short, there is possibility now, and I am grateful. Wherever my journey takes me, I am grateful, because there are a lot of me’s in this world.

My sincerest thanks to all who have the power to make this change and choose to do so. Thank you, Francis McDermott. Party on!

The Moment Before

Why is it that, in Exodus, God tells us that

They created the deaf, the mute, and the blind

yet in Leviticus we turn around and push them aside?

Why is it, in Genesis, that God creates

both man AND woman in Their own image

yet we get bogged down in gender roles

and social norms?

Why is it, in Romans, that we can bank

our entire faith on the fact that Abraham

came before Moses

and so are justified by grace alone,

rather than by works,

yet keep trying to earn our salvation

and set up obstacles for others to jump over to do the same?

God is calling all of us into immediate and total reconciliation with Himself.

Are we bold enough to take Him up on His offer?

People Are Watching

“I couldn’t do that, people are watching”

It’s exactly because people are watching that we must do it

Do what is light and love and true

For if we do not, if we are silent,

we silence the Holy Spirit inside us

the voice, our Jiminy Cricket,

that instructs on all that is pure and good and holy.

Do it so that people will see,

for their sake and for yours,

a taste of something good

 

Chutes & Ladders

We all have flaws

Things we need to work on

but if we start with a mindset of brokenness

We’ll always be swimming upstream

Exhausting yourself

trying to keep up with the invisible Joneses

Instead, focus on Jesus

approach life with a perspective of self-love

Then life will become more a celebration,

and invitation

Rather than a do-or-die situation

where every failure

sets you back a billion paces

This is not chutes-and-ladders, folks

It’s your life

Live it well

You are Mirror-Beautiful

If you’re ever standing in front of a mirror

Stop and say, “wow!”

The God who created the heavens and the Earth

saw it fit to craft every quark

Every thought, feeling, emotion

Every bone and muscle and ounce of fat and curve and shape

The way you talk the way you walk the way you breathe

The way you perceive life the way you interact with it

The way you connect the experiences you’ve had

Your past your future this very moment

So that it was the way you see it now

How amazingly beautiful you are.

¬°Amen!