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30 Apr 2021

SUNrise: cj speaks… Checking In

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April 30, 2021 Category: Commentary Posted by:

So, it has been a year since we first met as my writing career began with the Philadelphia Sunday SUN. It started with an acrostic poem called “Pandemic” which talked about how you were feeling and what was going in your life, so I thought it was pertinent to reach back out and ask you, as of today, where do see your life now versus what you saw a year ago?  What accomplishments have you set for yourself? Have you reached and accomplished those goals?  

There is so much going on in our society — nationwide, statewide, citywide and throughout our neighborhoods.  How are you feeling about getting up and making a difference, not just for yourself, but for those around you — for your community?

 I shared a poem two weeks ago called “Restorative Practices”, which spoke about us getting up and making some changes, not just for ourselves, but for those that are around us.  How are you faring in this pandemic?  Not that anyone is going to force you to be vaccinated, but what is your take on the vaccine?  The school year is about to come to an end; where is your child going to be in September 2021?  What things have you put in place for them to make up for their losses in their education?  There are so many questions being posed.  

This “checking in” on you is just simply asking you how are you setting yourself up  this spring for events, as summer is around the corner?  Before we know it, it will be the new school year. 


There is a will that GOD has for your life and that of your family. It is my prayer and hope that you are reaching up to get what it is that HE has for you and your family in order to receive what it is that you want for yourself personally, so that you can holistically be available and around for those around you. If you are not healthy, if you are not ready, and if you are not in motion, you cannot expect those around to pick you up and carry you, let alone to do this work for you.  

So, with this check-in, how are you checking in with yourself today?  I pray that you are taking this thing seriously.

 This life only goes around once, and if you don’t begin to look into our mirrors and see what is going on around us and have a better frame of mind about what is real versus what is fake, you may continue to falter and not make it to the place GOD has for you.

 I am not here to say what to do — just making a suggestion that change is imperative, and it is pertinent for the success of people of color and people in general.  

In order for us to get up and get out and do something different, we have to have those uncomfortable conversations. We have to have that reality check that this life that we are in is real to the degree whether it touches you or not, it is so real.

So let us decide today that we are going to do something different, checking in on another by way of this: we are going to go next door and ask our neighbor what we can do for them, we are going to call that family member and find out what they are in need of, and as we continue to raise our child or children and continue to uplift ourselves, we must be honest and true to what it is that we need. 

So be sure that you are trying to do the work, everyone.  Life is short and it is not guaranteed that you will wake up tomorrow.  Live in your truth and accept what you are able to do for others, along with yourself.  It is time for checking in and seeing what is happening in your life today!  Until next time…. PEACE!


JESUS has shown us the victory over all!!

Last week’s verdict of guilty, guilty, and guilty was a marking point in our current history of a change is coming for Black folks. 

It is not time to sit down — it is time to get up and do something as you move into the story GOD has for you. For it is HE who will continue to show the way to the promised land.

George Floyd is a sacrificial lamb that has changed the world for a moment, and with hope, will begin to make other changes in our upside-down world. 

Read Matthew 5:13-16 and Psalm 105:12-22…cj

cj is a poet, educator, motivational speaker, and inspirational writer who resides in Philadelphia.  If you were moved by this piece, shoot cj a “like” or comment at: [email protected].

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