By the world’s standard, I have it all. A devoted husband, terrific children (most of the time), my dream home, a cushy job, a loving family, a strong church connection, bucket lists fulfilled. So why was I left feeling empty, numb, and longing for more? Despite all the good in my life (and I don’t discount it; I praise God for it!), I questioned my purpose and place in this world as a Black woman. I wondered why my Blackness caused others so much pain, fear, and suffering. I worked hard at “doing Christianity” but was left feeling unworthy, never seemingly able to measure up.
If you’re anything like me, you’ve relied on everyone else’s interpretation of who you are. I trusted everyone else’s insights about what it means to be a woman, be Black, a wife, a mother, etc. I listened to and analyzed countless sermons. I’ve read more books than you can imagine. I examined blog posts and websites. I participated in Bible Studies. I did all these things, and yet I remained dissatisfied. I secretly wondered, “Where am I in the Bible?” “If God loved my people and me, why have we suffered so much? Why do we continue to suffer?” “Why am I not being promoted at work when I’m more than qualified?” “Why do I have to choose between work and home?” “Why are my children made to feel they’re less than others and incapable of greatness?” “Why do I live in fear when my husband or son walk down the street in a hoodie?” I searched for answers everywhere else, doing everything short of reading scripture and allowing God’s Word to speak to me, teach me, correct me, train me, equip me.
But then I finally cried out to the Lord, “Don’t you see me? Don’t you care? Why aren’t you answering me?” And in His infinite wisdom and mercy, God answered (Isaiah 65:24). Just as He responded to Hagar, He assured me, “I hear your misery, and I see you” (Genesis 16:11 and 13). God reminded me that just as He was with Joshua, He was with me too (Joshua 1:5). God heard my cry, just as He heard David’s, and He promised to rescue and honor me (Psalm 91:15). God reminded me that every answer to my questions could be found in His Word. With the guidance of the Holy Spirit (John 14:26), all I had to do was to search His Word (John 5:39, Proverbs 16:1, Jeremiah 33:3).
Thus, my study of the Bible, with the guidance of the Holy Spirit, through a lens of my womanhood, my Blackness, and my Christianity began in earnest. And oh, what glorious, unexpected, deeply profound, eye-opening revelations God provided about Himself, His plans and purposes, and His designs for me. Passages and stories that I’ve read or heard a thousand times have taken on a different meaning. The stories were no longer about someone else but about ME! Revelations and insights filled my journal, and my heart and my story have dramatically turned from doubt to determination; fear to faith; shame to security; brokenness to beauty; victim-ness to victorious living!
The purpose of this study is not to join the debate as to whether the history of ancient Africa and African descendants existed or not or to defend our existence. Nor is it my purpose to make you agree with me, but rather to point you to what the Bible says, allowing the Word of God to speak to you as It has spoken to me. The purpose is to examine God’s Word as written through a lens of Africa and African descendants, shedding light on their spiritual, political, social, military and economic contributions in the Biblical story of salvation. The purpose is to reclaim the rich legacy of ancient Biblical Africa and African descendants with the ultimate purpose of supporting Blacks in being fully restored as God’s special and loved people.
These Lessons will take you on a journey through ancient Biblical Africa. They will lay a firm foundation of our Biblical beginnings related to Africa or African descendants through the lens of Biblical truth so that our lives can lovingly express truth in all things (Ephesians 4:15). As previously shared, we will use the Bible as our primary source of truth (Deuteronomy 12:32, John 10:27). To the extent possible, we will also look at the original Hebrew , meaning of various words, passages, scripture, etc. The Hebrew written language was the original written language of most of the Old Testament. During the thousand years of the composition of the Old Testament was written in Hebrew (From <https://www.biblica.com/resources/bible-faqs/in-what-language-was-the-bible-first-written/>). We will also use other readings and historical documents, but only to the extent that they support the Biblical record.
As a faithful servant of God, these lessons are my attempt to share the understanding of the mysteries with which God has entrusted me (1 Corinthians 4:1). However, you must also remember that while history can confirm a lot of the Biblical record and while God has and does reveal deeper meanings and understandings through revelations into the Biblical record, many mysteries remain (Deuteronomy 29:29, Proverbs 25:2, I Corinthians 13:12).
This series of LIFE Lessons seek to reveal who we are in Christ. We’ll begin with God’s Word as you explore the concept of “identity as descendants of Africa.” Then, after having read and reflected upon God’s Story, I invite you to experience My Story as a reflection of God’s Word and workings in my life. Finally, I encourage you to engage in various reflective exercises to support the writing, re-writing or sharing of Your Story. I pray that my journey gives you confidence, joy, and inspiration as you come to understand your role, plan and purposes as descendants of Africa. May you stand a little taller and smile more broadly, knowing that you weren’t an afterthought. God had you in mind. And He has always seen us, just as He sees us today!
It’s my desire that you get in the Word for yourself and that you then share your amazing story with others. This activity,Character Analysis, is designed to support a greater understanding of God’s Word and to provide space for you to receive revelations and insights regarding God’s Word as led by the Holy Spirit. And this activity,Another Perspective, is designed to support the writing, re-writing and/or sharing of Your Story.
I pray that My Story, in the light of God’s Story, will serve as a catalyst to transform Your Story.
From my heart to yours,