Monday, April 29, 2013

The Art of Living Week 17: Stay in Your Lane

Stay in Your Lane

I was just a girl when I met Mother Moore, but she was already ancient. Mother Moore was my godmother’s mother and she was real deep.

Mother Moore rarely spoke, but when she did, everyone stopped whatever they were doing to hear the words they would all head.

“Mother Moore is special,” I was told. “She hears from God and when she tells you something, you better be listening.”

I kept waiting for Mother Moore to “speak into my life,” as it was called but it seemed like forever.

She would sit for hours with her eyes closed but I knew she was not asleep. Sometimes she’d just stare into space and then she’d turn and look at you. The truth is, Mother Moore was kind of spooky so I was hoping she never told me anything.

Mother Moore was a big woman and when she finally spoke to me, I knew why everyone listened. He voice vibrated and you could actually feel her words.

She looked deep into my eyes and spoke the words that always come back to me guiding my every decision: “Stay on the side of right,” she said.

I expected her to say something more, but that was it. She closed her eyes and went back to wherever it was that she went.

“Stay on the side of right,” didn’t mean much to me as a kid. I was hoping for something like, “You will be great one day,” or at least “Get out of Wilmington,” but I got “stay on the side of right.”

I can’t begin to tell you how frequently those words ring in my ears. They have been a constant reminder that even when I want to do what seems good I need to go a step further and stay on the side of right.

The area of “right” may not seem clear to you at first, but throughout my years, I have learned that the side of right comes with a neon sign.

So here’s my Mother Moore message to you; when others are doing whatever they please and seem to be getting away with it, you stay on the side of right.

When you feel like you want to haul off and slap someone because they are due; stay on the side of right.

When you feel the need to quit and throw in the towel on something that requires your love and dedication; stick to it and stay on the side of right.

When you don’t know where to go or what to do next; stay on the side of right.

Be you, be well, be true.

Bertice Berry, PhD.


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