The road to progress isn’t always pretty. And many times, the things that are the most unexpected and unfortunate can be the things that create the greatest breakthrough.
I only share and write about what might give hope and inspiration to others. So as I share this very personal battle that I’ve been through, perhaps you will see a new perspective on the trials in your life, as I have.
Transformation is something people often only see after the fact. They see the end result, the finished product. And it’s these outcomes that typically become the focus. Because everyone want’s to see the positive changes.
But there is a part of transformation that is rarely shared or highlighted. It’s not pretty, not worth taking a selfie over, and isn’t something you’d typically read about in someone’s social feed. At least not in a positive light.
But it is a very humbling, yet necessary side of the process. This side that is seldom talked about is what I call, The breaking.
I’ve overcome what I would consider to be a lot in my life. I overcame being a chubby kid and lost 100 pounds. I overcame my childhood poverty, my lack of formal education and built a business that I’m passionate about.
I work in a community that I love,, and am raising my kids in a better neighborhood and environment than I ever had. I could say that I’m living the dream.
I thought I knew what it meant to break generational curses. I thought I knew what it was to rise above. But I came to find out that as much as I thought I knew and as much as I had experienced in the past, my deepest revelation of transformation had yet to come.
At 23 years old I was married. 3 weeks later, we found out we were having a baby. At 24 I was a husband, a father, living in a 500 square foot apartment and coaching clients out of a garage in San Francisco. And I was loving all of it.
I thought I had already faced my tough times, and that it was only up from there. I thought I just needed to figure out the pieces, grind, and make it happen.
I thought I had paid my dues because when life looked hopeless for me, I surrendered everything and made commitments to God. I said yes to Him when it looked like there was no reason to say yes. I overcame family adversity, personal identity struggles, and kept the faith.
And now it seemed like it was all coming together. I was married to a beautiful wife, and had a healthy son. We were living in the city I loved, and I was doing what I loved for work. So now I could just step into my calling and my destiny was on it’s way.
And that was the first mistake. I thought I had paid my dues, and that I could just do my thing now that I was on track. I didn’t realize that the very thing that got me on track, that gave my life a second chance, was God’s grace.
And that very thing that got me to where I was, was to remain as the center of my life, my marriage, my business. But I thought I was good now. I thought I had this, and that I’ll just take it from here, God.
Fast forward 10 years, and circumstances in my personal life were drastically unraveling. The accumulation of things that went un resolved over the years finally broke open.
I was suddenly facing divorce and a broken family. It seemed like an ultimate life failure. All the good that had happened up until that point seemed like a waste. I was devastated, to say the least.
I always thought the greatest thing that happened to me was finding my wife. The story of our family, and what we came from. And as challenging as it was at times, nothing was as inspiring as our story.
And because of that, I thought that losing her and my family separating was the biggest tragedy and failure. Because there was too much good to let the bad win. There was too much potential, for it to stop short. And everything in me was breaking, because it just couldn’t end like this.
The memories we made as a family, the trials and obstacles we had overcome, the life we built together. All to end in brokenness. And there was nothing I could do to change it.
And it was in this nightmare which had become a reality, I was forced to face my struggle with control. And as I did, I realized how little control I actually have of so many things in my life outside of myself.
Control in many ways had been a key to my success. Because let’s face it, if you want certain things to improve in your life, you need to control certain variables. But my need to control became my downfall when I thought I could control outcomes.
I thought I could control my future. I thought I could and needed to control other people for the wellbeing of my family. And when I saw things and behaviors happening that I thought would potentially hurt my family, I went into control mode.
It’s crazy what a person can become when they let fear guide them. When they let the focus become what is going to go wrong. What is not going to happen that needed to. The things that will be destroyed if things don’t change.
When fear became my focus, I caused a lot of pain and frustration. There were hurtful things I said and did. And there were times I got angry and reacted. There were things I wish I did more of. There were important things I did not prioritize.
As I’ve gone through this season of personal trials, I’ve recognized the hardness that life’s misfortune can cause in a heart. It’s easy to justify, to blame, to begin to see the world through a darker lens when circumstances turn for the worse.
But I realized that It’s also life’s trials that can serve as an opportunity for our hearts to be purified. To break the chains that keep us from our potential. It’s a process of surrender that not many choose to endure.
Because the pain of being broken and restored is not passive. It requires you to revisit the pain. To work through it. To forgive. To actively let go. To actively focus on what’s good. To choose to have hope for the future. To believe that even though it may look horrible now, what’s to come is worth it if you keep pressing on.
And during this process I realized that being broken was the greatest victory and gift of my life. That everything in me that would hold me back from the potential I was created for, was being broken and restored. Because if you’re going to reach your potential, you need a solid foundation.
I’ve been chosen to be a voice, and I will testify to how I’ve overcome. And as I testify to the goodness and transformation in my life, I do so to inspire others to overcome the giants in their lives.
So just like David and his 5 Stones, it started with faith, it ends with faith, and it was faith everywhere in between.
So as I leave behind and forget the former things that held me captive, I thank God for doing a new thing, and now I can perceive it.