Sistas, have you ever been in a hard season for so long that when the glimmers of change finally begin to glisten, you fail to recognize the season is shifting in your life? …Oh, I’m by myself? Okay, well I’m going to tell the truth and shame the devil, anyway.
I have been an entrepreneur for seven years now. It’s hard to believe I’ve been at it for this long, but time flies whether you’re having fun or not. Don’t let LLC Twitter fool you, entrepreneurship is not easy, and it certainly isn’t for everyone. And there is nothing wrong with working a traditional forty-hour job with benefits and a steady paycheck on the first and fifteenth of every month. Truthfully, that’s the kind of job I looked for and thought I would secure post-seminary, but you know how God does.
I became an entrepreneur by force—not by choice. Proverbs 19:21 says, “Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails.” The Ekemini translation: “We be planning, but God be Goding.” Entrepreneurship is not a path I would have chosen of my own volition, but nothing can stop God’s plans for our lives—not even us. You see, I grew up in a low-income household, and if you’ve had to get it out the mud like me, then you know why financial stability is of critical importance. At the very least, having a regular job would allay that fear.
For at least three years after seminary, I searched for a traditional job, and I did freelance. But, since the Lord’s plans prevailed and not my own, I never got that job. Instead, I had to walk by faith on this path toward entrepreneurship; sistas, let me tell you, the road was rocky when I first started. When I graduated from seminary, I was often invited to speak at conferences, deliver keynote addresses, preach at churches on occasion, and write op-eds for various mainstream media outlets. That income is fine if it’s supplemental, but it was not great as my sole source of income—especially as someone who was just starting out as a public theologian, which is what I am.
Since I’ve started this journey, I co-founded the award-winning podcast Truth’s Table, in addition to my own solo business for my public theology work, Sistamatictheology. What made this journey difficult in the beginning was the lack of financial stability. Because as most entrepreneurs will tell you, when you’re first starting out, the struggle is real. We don’t get paid at regular intervals like people who work traditional jobs. We have to learn to manage the money we earn—after chasing down invoices (*coughs*)—until the next contract, partnership, or speaking engagement is secured. Don’t even get me started on the taxes.
There was a steep learning curve for me as an entrepreneur, but when I look back at when God first put me on this path, all I can do is be thankful for the countless ways God has shown up for me. God provided manna in the desert; He gave me Christina, who is my good friend, ministry partner, and co-founder of Truth’s Table. God opened—and still is opening—so many doors for Truth’s Table and my own public theology work. Doors that led to a 2023 NAACP Image Award Nomination, doors that led me to the United Nations where I advocated for reparations for African people and African descendants around the world. God has quite literally blown my mind, and I know this is only the tip of the iceberg.
I’m not saying any of this to brag because, left up to me, my life would look nothing like this. My plans were too small; God’s plans were exceedingly greater than I could have ever imagined. My boast is truly in the Lord who created this beautiful life where my gifts and skills have made room for me and I’m paid to walk in my purpose. This is a gift I am extremely careful about stewarding because I refuse to squander it with ingratitude.
Now that I’m seven years into this journey, things have stabilized financially. I give praise to God, for I’ve learned that the best way for me to recognize seasons of change in my life is through gratitude and staying in the presence of God through prayer. This year in particular, I’ve noticed that many of my longstanding prayers have been answered and moved from my prayer list to my praise list of things to thank God for. Looking at God and receiving the blessings God graciously bestows on me is how I’ve learned to see the glimmers of a new season.
Sistas, how do you recognize new seasons in your life?Leave a Comment