One of the most crucial endeavours l committed to, when searching for answers in my life was reading. Reading allowed me to understand that my life was not a hopeless situation and that most successful people, started off feeling hopeless, poor and ignorant
I was able to reach that conclusion through relating to the stories that the authors were telling. Utilising storytelling, these individuals were able to make avail something which l thought was not available to me. I became convinced after reading their stories that success was available to me!
When l was young there was an issue that personally affected my spirituality or my closeness to Jesus or God. Growing up in Africa was the argument that Jesus was not a God of the African race. He was a God of the Caucasian race.
On the other hand, the Bible clearly articulated that God created all of us in his image. Which in essence meant that Jesus looks like any one of us! However, all the pictures available all over the World and all the movies portrayed a white Jesus. I even grew up in the Anglican church in Zimbabwe (Church of England) where they had posters of a white Jesus in the church.
Furthermore, Christianity was brought to Africa by white missionaries and thereafter the white colonialists, who resembled the missionaries, proceeded to colonise Africa. Colonisation and Slave trade outclasses any act of inhumanity ever to be imposed on the African continent.
Even though it was reiterated to me, that I was created in God’s image it did not make sense. My perspective of who Jesus/God is, was being shaped by the stories that were revolving in my atmosphere.
Today l listened to a man called William Paul Young, he wrote a book titled “The shack”. Although l did not read the book itself l managed to watch the movie that was created as a result of this book.
I am astounded by this man. He made my day! William explained that, although he was berated for portraying the image of Jesus as a black African American woman, a Brazilian woman and a Middle Eastern man in his book, he could not be dissuaded. His aim was to “take God out of the box” that was being created by the previous story tellers. Frankly William has no idea how much of a positive impact this has made.
Although we know that God is bigger than the limitations placed on him. It can be difficult if a few individuals in one society are determined to portray God as unavailable to other races!
This is how powerful good story telling can be, it challenges stereotype and aims to set the record right.
Being successful in life begins with changing your perspective and your perspective shapes your beliefs and values. The action that you decide to take to improve your life depends on the perspective that you command.