I am a black woman who loves black men. There has always been a dominant black male presence in my life; from my father to my uncles and cousins. When I think about who I have become as a woman, I nearly always have to accredit the good to being raised by a strong, determined, and most of all; a PRESENT black man.
I grew up with a father who advised us to give God the first part of our day. He would tell us, “Before you go turning on your rap, listen to a church song…read a scripture…say a prayer!” I grew up with a father who would make sure during summer breaks from school that we were still reading books and staying current on local and world news. I grew up with a father who taught us never to depend on a man for anything, but to always work hard for the things we need and want. I grew up with a father who on Friday nights would take us to Blockbuster let us choose a movie, buy us snacks and have family night.
I grew up with a father who worked a full time job and started his own business all while having the demanding job of pastoring a black congregation in the city. I grew up with a father who requested that his wife be a stay at home mom to fully care for his children and treated her like royalty in return. I grew up with the kind of man who not only would give his daughters his last, but also their friends and any stranger in need. I grew up with the kind of father who stressed to us the importance of police authority. He taught us to say yes maam/sir to them simply because they were the enforcers. He taught us to stay in the right and to pick our battles and that being able to walk away from a scene alive would be better than being a dead hero or in this day, a hashtag.
I grew up with a strong black male presence. And that has made all the difference in my life. So now with the current state of our nation, I see what the black man is portrayed as most often in the media and what I see is foreign to me. The image that is known as the black man, and in the back of many minds…the nigger, is not what I know. And while not every black man is living up to what I know to be true of a black man, I still know that there is potential. I still know that there is hope.
For as long as I can remember, I have been pro black man. Not always because of what they are, but what I know they can be. Today, I am an angry black woman. Yes, an angry black woman. Not bitter, but I’m mad. Not because a black man cheated on me or chose another woman over me. I’m mad because my hope is being attacked every single day.
My hope of seeing black men of my generation become the king that I grew up watching daily in my home is being profiled, spoken to with no respect, and in recent news, killed and made available on social media.
They are afraid of my hope.
So when they should protect my hope, they kill my hope in hopes that I’ll never hope again.
With my hope gone, I have no reason to believe that the Lord will make us the head and not the tail; above and not beneath if we follow his commandments. (Deuteronomy 28:13---paraphrased)
But even after they kill my hope, I find more hope in the black men that remain. Call me stupid, but the love of a black woman is something serious. This love causes me to hope when it seems there is nothing left. It causes me to lay on my face and plead to God for my hope. It causes me to hope even when the masses can’t see why I care so much.
Whereas I would love to share my hope with the world, perhaps it’s only for me. But I know that when the seeds of my hope comes to full bloom in its season, that I will enjoy the harvest. I will see him in all of his black glory---his style, his grace, his swag, his vibrant spirit, his creativity. His will and determination---his very existence will one day be appreciated.
And because I am prepared for my hope, I call myself queen.
Every day I await the reign of my king.
Prayer: God please help us in these evil times to keep our focus on you. Renew our hope. Give us the strength that's needed in this time. Give us the courage that is needed during this time. We thank you for being our peace. We seek understanding and direction from you and you alone. Thank you for the power that you have given us in our tongue to speak life and death over all situations. We cover our men. We ask strength for all of those who have experienced loss during this time. Keep us like only you can. Amen.