Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Trayvon, Carmello, Q, and Me

by Ken Brown

In the wake of the Trayvon Martin verdict, I remember sitting in the Chapel with a mixed bag of emotions. I was saddened by the loss of a teenager, conflicted by the case’s racial overtones, and stunned by the reactions of Christians in my Facebook community. I concluded that the most tangible things I could do were to preach the following weekend a message on the fatal messiness of community, and to personally pour energy into an African-American male’s life. Last Friday, February 21 I checked off the later pledge.

I was invited to be a facilitator at DU’s Center for Multicultural Excellence’s 5th Annual Black Male Initiative Summit. I spent the entire day with a small group of seven African-American males engaged in conversation on the topics of resilience, activism, and social change. The young man who stole my heart is Q, an eighth grader at a Denver Public Schools middle school. Imagine a Carmelo Anthony mini-me – braids, charm, smile – then you can visualize Q. He is slightly height-challenged for the NBA at 4’11”, but he towers with confidence and aspiration.

Q wants to attend Yale law school. I inquired as to why and he replied, “When I told my mom I want to be a lawyer she told me to Google the country’s top law schools and Harvard was #1, followed by Yale. I chose Yale after reading more about it.” “I chose Yale.” I love it! Q’s mother, who is single-handedly raising four children, spurred her son’s dream onward with one action step- “Google” where you want to be in 10 years. I pray for Q daily with a hopefulness that he’s going to accomplish whatever God has in store for him.

Are you holding fast to your dreams? Have you Googled any possibilities lately for your 10 year plan? Take the next 10 minutes and consider your dreams and dare to believe, again.

Romans 5:5 This hope doesn't put us to shame, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.

Ken Brown is the senior pastor at BUMC.   He can be contacted here.

1 comment:

  1. Dear Pastor Ken,

    Thank you again for spending the day with us and facilitating at the Black Male Initiative Summit, Friday, February 21. Your group enjoyed their time with you and Mawulke and your honest and open dialog. Your impact on the young men in your group will be felt for a long time to come. Thanks for your time, energy and for being a catalyst for change and a role model for the 8th, 9th and 10th grade Black males who will be our Pastors, Presidents, Mayors, doctors, lawyer, teachers and leaders in the future! Have a blessed day!