Chapter 11: More Than a Conqueror
Friday, August 27th, 2010
A great crowd stuffed Harmony almost to the point of standing room only on this beautiful Friday night. Among the faces were Darius, Michelle, and Erica. Darius and Erica were on their second ‘date’ and had immensely enjoyed each other. Michelle definitely gave her approval through one of her huge, pretty smiles. She was happy for her two friends.
A little later, Khrystal joined the group on this special open mic night. She was greeted with hugs from the other three as she took her place at the round table. There sat the four friends awaiting the performances of the poets.
Then walked in Jeremiah, with Mrs. Emma’s cane in tow. But he was not alone. He had a guest with him. It was Jerrel, all cleaned up and looking like a brand new young man. They walked over to where the rest of the group was, Jeremiah with a limp since he was still in rehab. The group didn’t notice Jeremiah and Jerrel at first. Jeremiah walked up behind them and cleared his throat loud enough for them to hear. All of them turned around to get Jeremiah and Jerrel in their vision.
Darius was the first to remove himself from the table and gave Jeremiah a big hug. He then moved over to Jerrel and shook his hand, along with a headshake of amazement. He was taken aback by Jerrel’s new look of a clean shave, fresh jeans, button down shirt and brown blazer.
Darius’ greeting was followed by Erica, Khrystal, and finally, Michelle. Yet, Michelle’s was a little different. She went up to Jeremiah and not only gave him a hug, but a small kiss as well. She flashed a bright smile and whispered, “Good to have you back.”
The MC, Big Bryan, came over the sound system. “Let’s welcome back to the stage, a favorite of ours, Mr. Jeremiah Washington!”
The roar of the people was near deafening. Jeremiah gave a smile and walked up on the familiar stage with a slight limp. He had been gone for months, but he had returned home.
Jeremiah gave Big Bryan a hug and stepped up to the mic. “God bless you.” Jeremiah teared up a bit, but continued to speak as he sat on the stool provided. “It’s good to be back home! I’m not one for long introductions, so I want to start this off with something I wrote a while back. This is for you, Jerrel.”
Jeremiah grabbed the tip of his trademark newsboy cap to adjust it. Then he recited the poem “Re|Deemed.”
“Beautiful spirit buried deeply in sin
Tortured by this disease that has overtaken man.
Separation from God has befell him
Only God’s love could redeem him.
See, redeemed is to be revived
Relived through the eyes of Christ.
Reborn to be renewed
Black skies transform to blue.
Trade in the old life for a new mind
Submit to intervention so divine
Much given, much required is true
New man in as the old man flew.
I give myself three-fold
A renewed, living story is told.
Mind, body, spirit to the Lord
Living strictly in His Word.
Redeemed, now I reflect Jesus
Through Him, more power than Greek Zeus.
I walk differently, don’t talk the same
So fresh off the press that I have a new name.
Jesus died that I may have new breath
Picking me up when I had nothing left.
Now I owe Him everything I have
Releasing the iniquity that had me trapped.
Redeemed, deemed to be unfixable
Re, rewind to the future attainable.
Float to newness by God’s grace
Use to see darkness, but now I see His face.
No longer even recognized
By the mere human eyes.
Must look through me with spiritual sense
See the man I’ve become, a better me
Not the man I left behind, the use to be.
Redeemed, it’s a change that feels so good
New growth after the negative flood.
I praise God for who I am now
Redeemed to the point of a new vow.
Rehabed, Renewed, Re|Deemed
Thank God for Him being in me.”
As Jeremiah finished, Jerrel was the first to stand up and give applause. Everyone else subsequently stood up to show approval to Jeremiah’s work.
After it had quieted down, Jeremiah spoke yet again. “God bless you. I would like to do one more. This one means a lot, because it’s the second poem I have written since my incident. But it gives me hope for my future. This one is “More Than a Conqueror.” “ Jeremiah got up from the stool, leaned on the cane, and recited the poem.:
God told me
In his unfailing Word
That I was more than a conqueror.
He said that in me
Was the sound of victory
Because victory is one of His many names
So in me was the same.
I have the confidence
Of the label “winner”
The imposed mantra of victor.
The overcomer of all
That was created for my fall
When they said die
God said, “I give you life.”
More than a conqueror
Through my Heavenly Father
The spiritual battle already won
The future fight already done.
My hands raised in the sky
All negative around decided to die
Now I stand up tall
Has taken a fall.
I give my God praise
While my fist is raised
Because I can do all things
Through Christ, in His name.
He gives me strength and might
To fight the good fight
I shall rise above the faults
And know this battle wasn’t for naught.
So now erect
I scream in my determined dialect
The line each should rehearse to one’s self
Even through hard rain and a flood of mess.
More than a conqueror!
More than a conqueror!
More than a conqueror!
With each new stanza, the tone of Jeremiah’s voice become more boisterous and convincing. There was excitement that voyaged from the depths of Jeremiah’s belly to the creases of his lips.
At the ceasing of the poetic words, the crowd gave one more applause as Jeremiah exited the stage. It was the group of Jeremiah’s close friends who were the most supportive and clapped the loudest. It was one that seemed to last an eternity.
They were exuberant to have Jeremiah back where he belonged. On the stage, rhyming with reason, using the talent God had given him.