Hate him or love him, Tyler Perry is a twinkle in many an Atlantan’s eye these days. He’s doing big things in the community and making movies all at the same time. TP sends out personal email blasts to thousands of people with motivational stories and often photos of his personal life. In one of his recent blasts, Perry dropped pictures of his former living situation and detailed his dispair and disappointment during that time.
It touched me more so than ever and made me think of fellow blogger BlogXilla’s situation. He and I have had conversations about this very thing and I recall telling him yesterday that “you are exactly where God wants you to be.” Tyler Perry shared similar experiences in his email:
I was dealing with some foolishness, as we all do from time to time, and I was about to get frustrated and start to complain–but before I could get a negative word out, I caught it. It’s always better to bless than to curse. So I decided to think about all of the blessings in my life. I went for a ride over to 47 Twenty Fifth Street, Apartment 8 here in Atlanta. This was my last apartment; right after being homeless. I lived in it just 10 short years ago.
When I got there I saw that they were going to be tearing it down soon. I asked the new developer if I could get in and take some pictures (I have to show you these pictures). I wasn’t prepared for what happened when I went in. I opened the door and a flood of memories came back to me. The apartment is one room, a bathroom and a wall of cabinets that was the kitchen. I so remember sitting in this place and being so hungry and so unhappy and wondering what my life was worth. Asking questions like, “Should I go on living?” Mad at the world and still behind in the rent. To think that it was only 10 years ago blew my mind. Needless to say, I couldn’t hold it any longer. I sat on the edge of the tub and the tears would not stop.
I remember back then reaching out and nobody would help me. No friend, no family–nobody. I called and asked one friend of mine for $20 so that I could have food for the week. He told me that he was coming to bring it, but it took him six days. I had all of these hopes and dreams but all I could see were those four walls. All I could see was what was right in front of me. Sometimes you start looking at your immediate and forget about the inevitable (if you believe).
I didn’t know how I was going to get there, but something in me would keep telling me, “You’re going to make it. . . hold on!” If you’re hearing that voice then listen to it. THAT’S GOD. Remembering all of this really shook me up. I got so sad but right away I realized where God has brought me from and then I got so happy. And the thing that touched me the most was that in all of that despair and hopelessness, I thought that I was alone, but it was clear to me that GOD WAS THERE EVEN THEN!!! I wish that you could feel what I’m feeling right now. I didn’t know it at the time but now, looking back, I see that He was there all the time.
I know that some of you are tired of hearing this stuff from me, but there are others who need it like they’ve never needed it before. So please, bear with me (smile). Listen to me. Every person that I thought would help me turned their back on me. Don’t get me wrong. I’m not mad or bitter. I’m grateful. I have learned since then that sometimes God will close every door around you so that you will have to look at Him and Him alone to supply all of your needs. I wish that I could bring every one of you into this apartment and show you the miracles that God can and is willing to do for anyone who believes.
God does not require us to be perfect for him to bless us. He rains [blessings] on the just as well as the unjust. But He does require faith for everything from salvation to miracles. I know that these are trying times, but LOOK to GOD–Oh my, LOOK to GOD!! And HOLD ON!!! HOLD ON!! KEEP MOVING. . . just keep moving.
Here are the pictures: