Born for a Purpose

1967.

States banning interracial marriage are considered to be violating the constitution.

Of course some states already had laws that sanctioned interracial marriage, but it wasn’t until 1967 that these marriages would be looked at across any and all state lines as a marriage. That was only 49 years ago.

What are the chances?

Do you ever think about why you were born the way you were in the time that you were?

One hundred years ago a black man and a white woman getting together would have been followed by a lynching.

This may sound a little dramatic, but sometimes I think that the life I’m living is a miracle. Not in the cliche sense that all of life is a miracle (though I also think that’s true), but in the sense that so much had to happen for my life to exist as I know it.

Slavery had to be overcome, education had to be an option for black people and Hispanic immigrants, segregation had to be overthrown, laws upon laws had to be repealed, not to mention my parents finding each other and falling in love (which is a miracle in of itself).

The older I get the prouder I am of my skin, my mixed skin. I think about all the people who helped me to get here, my families, but also the blood sweat and tears of my ancestors. The Black, White, and Hispanic people who made the world better so that I could be born, I could get an education, I could have opportunity, that I could live.

It’s such a blessing that I could grow and have an ordinary life, that I’ve lived in cities surrounded by people of all kinds of races and ethnicity and for me at least it is all so wonderfully normal.

I think about my grandmother and how she more than anyone instilled in me an understanding that there was beauty to my skin. That all the parts of me mattered and that it was a gift to be Black. A gift (I really love my grandmom as you well know). I think about the positive and negative things I’ve internalized about being mixed. I think about how much we’ve progressed as a country and how much farther we must go.

Part of growing up is loving yourself. College helped me not only in gaining skills to navigate the world, but the confidence from more fully discovering myself and building my identity in God. It made me see that being mixed has it’s sorrows and it’s beauty, much as being a Christian, wife, student, and so many other aspects of me do.

I don’t really have a sounding call to racial equality or social justice. I simply want to say that as I’ve daily embraced who I am and who God says I am I want to remind myself and the world that I am mixed, I am proud and it is important because for some reason God had me born mixed, female, Christian, nerd, nature lover, writer, for such a time as this. And I for one cannot wait to see the plans God has for me, my skin, my heart, my soul.

20160309_171522

Me in all my natural glory

You were born for a purpose

I hope you can see too that your skin, your abilities, your soul, your passions, your great love, all these things were put into you for a reason. Major hurdles in history might have to have been crossed so you could be born, but you were born and that means you have purpose. What a wonderful miracle that is for all of us!

Go forth with God and share your glitter with the world.

Make it rain,

Juanita

Featured image photo credit to: Kassie K (mine and my husband’s hands on a closed Bible)

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