What the enemy means to harm you, God can turn around.
That was my immediate thought in watching a clip of the interview with Geoffrey Owens on Good Morning America.
The former Cosby Show actor was recently shamed in a story about his work at Trader Joe's after "falling from grace" so to speak. Although the actor was a regular on the show and landed roles and directing jobs after, it just "wasn't adding up after a while" as he put it in the interview.
This man was minding his business, working a job to contribute and provide for his household and someone with ill-intent decided to blast that only to be met with the outpouring support from both fellow Hollywood actors and regular people alike. It took me back to my waitressing days when I was a music industry hopeful trying to keep a flexible schedule so I could work in the studio. I had a college degree and I was slinging Italian food but it was all for a purpose.
I could have gotten a "regular" job, but I didn't want to get caught in the rat race. So I did what I had to do, which is exactly what Owens was doing as well. This man was so gracious and so thoughtful and charismatic in his interview with Robin Roberts adorned in a Yale hat (from which he is a graduate) and his Trader Joe's nametag.
In a short time, he dropped some gems that one, show his light and two, will likely land him new acting gigs in no time. Tyler Perry already put out a tweet that he was welcome to come shoot on his new show. Because we know that regardless of most other things, to be liked, is most helpful in entertainment fields. But here was the kicker, he said:
"I wouldn't feel comfortable getting jobs from this event ... I want to get a job because I'm the right person."
Sure, he was open to auditions. But didn't want to just be handed a job and it was the most earnest and heartfelt thing I'd seen in a while. Here these people tried to publicly humiliate this man and he still spoke with so much integrity and grace about the aftermath of this moment in the spotlight.
The bigger conversation that he made sure to point out was this idea of the dignity of work and what it means to work. The idea that we think one job is better than the other and it's not. He pointed out that some jobs pay better, etc., but who are we to think that we're better than the next person getting up to go to work every day just like we do? And then this is where I lost a morning tear.
"I've had a great life. No one has to feel sorry for me." He said.
I've had a great life. This is a mantra that I've been repeating to myself a lot lately. More so, "I have a good life." I cannot stand how in today's time, we are all (myself included) wrapped up in this idea that the only way to be happy is to be famous or Instagram famous. There is SOOOOOO much more to life than that and I am so thankful to have that revelation.
I spent so much time thinking that I should have more, being envious of those that had more, and hustling myself to death for opportunities to get more poppin. And then I got burned out. And then my uncle died and so much of my perspective changed. And then I re-invested myself in the work that I'd grown stagnant in. And then I decided that I have a good life. Right here. Right where I am, if I don't achieve another thing, I wouldn't need anyone to feel sorry for me either.
Geoffrey Owens, man. He has no idea what his story just did for so many people. How many people he just set free by living in his own truth and not being afraid to tell it. Some of your fave entrepreneurs might have some secret jobs you don't know about either, but I digress.
It reminded me that a job is just what we do, not who we are. We get wrapped up and freaking LOST in that. We shell out titles at times before we even say our names. We don't have to be defined by that and when we allow other things to define us, we are CRUSHED into those fantasies as Ms. Audre Lorde so eloquently put it.
I don't feel lost anymore and that is such an amazing feeling and place to get to. It's the moment when you can finally see the inner work and the prayer and the talking it out and the one therapy session that you did attend actually working out.
If you missed the interview, please watch the clip below. Please know who you are outside of what this world tries to tell you and remember that weapons will be formed, but in Jesus name, they will not prosper.
FULL INTERVIEW: @GMA EXCLUSIVE -- "There's no job better than another...every job is worthwhile..." Actor Geoffrey Owens speaks out, responding to job shaming and backlash after a photo of him working at a grocery store was posted online: https://t.co/0wZJnpowI9 pic.twitter.com/aNiG5fV2yf— Good Morning America (@GMA) September 4, 2018