Then he said to them, “Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men.”
Today I’m reflecting on following. What it means to follow, what it means to lead, what it means to be led. Because there is a differentiation between following and being led, right?
Today I copied and pasted a link to my Instagram on my Facebook page and I wrote “follow me.” In 2019 this act is nothing major to Millennials. This is the age of oversharing, overshowing, overknowing. But as a recently fully restored Christian I have never been keen to full transparency. I performed my sin in the dark and was adamant about keeping my multiple personas distinct from each other. My work and school persona was separate from my social/hood persona of which I definitely kept hidden from my church and Christ life persona.
My instagram was for my most explicit club pictures and immoral dealings (nothing crazy, maybe I posted a pic eyes bloodshot red high from smoking weed)
My Linkedin was for my professional business persona, academic accolades, Michelle Obama-ness
And good ole’ reliable FB – the catch all for Friends and family and “chuuuch.” Kept everything clean and PG on there because my grandparents are watching and my ultimate goal in life is to make each of them proud.
It goes without saying but all of these pages were super duper private, google unsearchable private.
Toward the end of 2018, I began to really let God live in his temple. I used to give God a dresser drawer for some overnight clothes but little by little, I let him keep a toothbrush in my place, next some closet space for some of the robes he likes to wear. Sigh, God in his perfection has always had better design aesthetic than me so I let him give my soul an interior make over. Double sigh, I got tired of shacking up so I decided to marry him and so here we are.
I am his and he is mine.
Like any significant other in a committed relationship God wanted me to show him off on my social media. Social mmmmmeeeedddiiiiaaa (Soulja Boy voice)
So I had to clean up these online identities. Facebook wasn’t no big thing because the presence of God that lived through my grandparents previously condemned me from promoting sin. My Linkedin is a stale snail, that wasn’t no thing, but my instagram! My instaglam! My #thickthighsavelives #thirsttrap #trapqueengreen! Eeek, that page needed a Thessalonia Wednesday Night Praise and Deliverance service! Lmbo! Seriously though. I’m emphasizing the full intensity of making my instagram page public, giving it to God as a platform for witnessing and then additionally sharing my instagram on facebook for the facebook jury. Big deal, y’all big deal.
God said acknowledge me in all things not some things.
Directly and indirectly many people have questioned me about creating sharlenegreen.net There have been a range of mixed reactions as equally diverse to the historical reaction to Christ.
My favorite critique is “Who does she think she is?” In anticipation of such exclamations of audacity I have coined the namesake of my network, “Who is Sharlene Green?” Lol. That stung somebody.
And with each blog post, poem, video, op-ed, you will seek and find the answer you desire.
What is my inspiration to such a narrow and bold declaration of Christ?
Isn’t that the whole purpose of our faith? Do we not crawl, so we may walk, so we may stand and not grow faint? So we may mount up with wings, like that eagle that soar? Aren’t we not each called to declare and witness and minister the word of Jesus Christ? Then why you and why not me? Am I not allowed to love God as deeply as you? Or care about the souls of men as deeply as you? What’s up with you and your Cain spirit? Are you secretly afraid that God will favor the purity of my burnt offering more than you? hhmm?
Be careful, I wouldn’t want you to burn your foot in your attempts to snuff out my flames.
Peter and Andrew were fisherman. They met Jesus along the Jordan river in the fall of AD 26. Pause. They met Jesus when Jesus was 26. What were you doing at 26?
Back to Peter and Andrew, with their partners James and John they followed Jesus throughout Galilee for several months. In the summer of AD 27 (a year later) they were in Capernaum and they returned to fishing, Jesus decided to do another tour of Gaililee so he called Peter and Andrew then James and John to follow him.
Matthew 4:19 And he said unto them, follow me and I will make you fishers of men
Back to 2019, follow me.
I can’t speak on behalf of non-millennials but rather we millennials admit it or not each of us millennials are concerned with our social presence and more particularly our social media presence.
Men in romantic pursuit of me have actually asked me, “how many followers do you have?”
How many Followers do I have!
Seriously, not asked for my phone number, not asked, “do you have a man?” but these Millennial age men have literally asked, “how many followers do you have?” Shocked then but with a little articulation, they were actually asking me, “what is your impact?” And I presume only people with an impact are equally concerned about my impact and so they inquired, “How many people know you?” “How many people know and are attracted to what they know of you?” “How well do you know and manage the identity that people have of you?”
Well played, my brothers, well played.
A private person I have never been concerned with who followed me. I am only concerned about whose leading me, Jesus Christ. In a concerted effort to change my trajectory, I began studying my word like never before and in studying I received regular, fresh interpretation. With my own store house being completely full I had more than enough to share my overflow and so I did. Thus sharlenegreen.net was created.
But this page is about more than sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ. As I move forward in my career I wanted to experiment with boldness. I wanted my identity to be completely consumed in Christ. I wanted potential employers to readily accept or reject me because of my alignment with Christ. I can do this with confidence because I have 1000% trust in God’s ability to bless me for my bravado.
Sharlenegreen.net is my Solomon’s temple. It is my church, my burnt offering, my creation to God, where I showcase his infinite glory, indicated with infinite expression, infinite decorations, a curtain there, a new leather couch there. People ask, why do you do this? I say, “why not do this?” “Why not serve God? Why not make him proud?” Why wait to transcribe our memoir? This perilous and romantic walk together? Why not?
This website in its pure creation and pure maintenance is my after death insurance policy. God will never tell me I knew you not. In his right hand is the book of life in his left hand will be my memoir.
God will say give an account of your life and I will respond, from which volume would you like to begin?
We each will be judged for the talents we were given and the work we were instructed to do. My talents will not be buried instead my givens will be doubled and reapportioned according to the measurement of my faith.
People have asked me what’s your end game do you want to minister? Of which I am hereby answer, the end game?!
I bbbbeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeennnnnn, in the game.
Call me the water boy.
Fresh water in the game.
I am beyond the place of taking my cross and go. My back is bruised with the heavy weight of this ministry, I have taken my cross and gone.
Seriously, no I don’t want to be a pastor.
No I don’t want to minister in church.
Nor sit on a pulpit.
I don’t even enjoy public praying.
I’m not here too play games with yall. More importantly, I’m not bout to play myself before God on Judgement Day. God gave me a job to do and I am going to do it and only it.
I have to be accountable to my work lest I be judged for my rebellion.
This site here is more than enough work for me. Many people will never step foot in a church but they will secretly visit this page, they will continue to secretly contact me and I will continue to retain their confidence. Secretly and earnestly praying for them.
That’s a word in itself. Let that speak.
This is who I am. This is why I write.
Who is Sharlene Green?
She is me.
Seek and Find.
Taste and see.