Back in my ministry days, I was fascinated by a a story in Samuel where God said not to be impressed or intimidated by someone’s appearance or position in life because even though they may look like they something, He (God) had already rejected them. And that really stuck with me for the rest of my life. Everybody I have ever met who has gone out of their way to try to look like a million dollars or act like they got it going on, have always seemed to be the saddest people in the world once the lights go down and the cameras are off.
That story in Samuel is where we get the popular quote that “man looks at the outward appearance but God looks on the heart”. I have always tried to have my outward appearance be a reflection of my heart. That has not been easy when people are used to seeing you on stage in suits worth more than what most people make in a month, but that is not how I am off stage. Most of us in entertainment media have our clothes sponsored. It’s one of the perks. But knowing where I came from, I could never personally spend that kind of money trying to make myself look good when there are people struggling just to keep their lights on.
I tell this story all the time about when I was in college back in the 80’s and my mama would come to visit. She would show up with home cooked food and there was never any shortage of volunteers to help her carry the boxes to my dorm. Or I would come back from class and she would be sleep in my room waiting for me- just needing some time to herself. As poor as we were, I was on work study and I needed some more pants and shoes and all I had to give her was $10. She left for the afternoon and stopped back by campus before going home and dropped off 5 pair of pants, 2 shirts, 3 pair of shoes, and $2 change. She found a store on it’s last day going out of business and everything they had left was in my size.
You see those are the kinds of blessings and leading I have known my whole life. And that is the way I have tried to be for others. And that is why I believe I have been so blessed to do what I do. Every dime I have put into others instead of trying to keep up with the Jones’ has always come back to abundantly bless me in my hour of greatest need. I remember going to the same Walmart for years talking to the same cashier until one day I did a local show and I didn’t even think about the fact that I was all over the radio and TV. I went through her line and she said, “you never told me who you were”. And I replied “I am the same person who has come through your line for the past 3 years”. She looked at me and thought for a moment then smiled and said “you know what, you really are”.
I said all that to say this: your nails, your hair, what brand you wearing, or what pose your striking, at the end of the day, is not really who you are. In Genesis, it was said of Adam and Eve that they were naked and unashamed. Can you say that you are proud of the naked you? Or, better still, could you say that God is proud of what you got on and why? I’m just asking. Only you can tell yourself the honest answer. Which is what I try to do every day.” – Neo Blaqness