Tuesday, March 20, 2012


Here in Chicago that is a slang term that is used, I guess it means are you down, is this truly what you are about. Unfortunately, Chicago has a not so good reputation when it comes to violence especially once the snow melts and the temperature rise. One year either 2011 or 2010 the 1stwarm day 36 people were shot, 36! Over the weekend when I woke up to my tweets I read that 18 people had been shot in Chicago overnight, 18! Disturbing to many was the fact that a 6 year old girl was murdered on her first porch.

I saw many tweets about stop the violence and how the stop snitching or no snitching code on the street is stupid and for someone to come forth and identify the murderers of the innocent girl. This morning however, I read in the Red Eye that the girl was sitting on her porch with her mother, younger sister, and a male. Ok so who is the male? What is his relation to the family? Why is it we don’t have more details about said male? Then I read that the family was gang affiliated.

See initially I thought this was a random drive by shooting and an innocent little girl lost her life. This is where the are you about that life part comes in. So many people are out here living the street life, claiming to be “about that life” but aren’t ready to face the consequences that come with the life. Many of these people about that life fail to realize that they are not the only ones affected by their choices.

That goes for each and every one of us. Yes we are grown and we have the right to decide but our decisions can have an effect on our family, friends, loved ones, coworkers, those around us. Everything that we do, EVERYTHING has an impact on someone else other than ourselves. Be it in the immediate or in the long run. But, back to being about that life:

Nowadays it seems there is more violence in Chicago but that could just be because more is reported on the news. As violence has been a part of this city for quite sometime. It’s crazy many of the people out here in gangs, doing dirt, shooting, robbing and beating people up aren’t even leaving their neighborhoods. What does that mean? It means they aren’t hard to find, someone probably knows their entire family and has no problem letting bullets at will when they choose even if on their front porch steps with children, mothers, grandmothers and so forth present.

Does this make it right? Absolutely not but I believe the good book says if you live by the sword you die by the sword. It also says that “For I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate Me, but showing mercy to thousands, to those wholoveMe and keep My commandments.” (Exodus 20:4-6) So even the sins of a father can effect his children’s children down to the fourth generations.

Be mindful whom you hang around and associate with for their blessings as well as their curses can affect your life. Its like that old saying goes guilty by association. Your mere association with certain people and groups, coupled with being in the wrong place at the wrong time can prove to be deadly or detrimental. We have to choose wisely.
Now I understand sometimes you are simply in the wrong place at the wrong time and completely an innocent bystander that has been caught up in senseless violence. However, if you are ok with and affiliated with those that are about that life, don’t cry victim or foul when their demons show up at your door looking for you.

Sadly most of these kids nowadays in gangs are misled, under educated, lack guidance and strong foundations and they aren’t truly about that life either. However, in many respects they don’t know what to do or they’ve gotten involved and now feel there is no way out. As people what can we do, start at home teaching our children how to think for themselves and make good decisions. We do that by being examples then we reach out and mentor someone else in our community, place of worship, a shelter.

For it is not enough to talk about it or blog about it we have to do something again starting in our own homes but then reaching out to someone else in some kind of way. Even if your choice is to pray, do that, if your choice is to praise, do that. For the prayers of the righteous availeth much and praise confuses the enemy. Whatever your choice, do something!

Be a blessing and be blessed,
Epiphany Essentials

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