Page 132 - Cityview Magazine - July/August 2017
P. 132

got to have some real conversations. And you were like, “No, I don’t.”
B: I remember saying, “I can just keep doing what I’m doing; they don’t have to know a thing.”
H: The reason I wanted you to have the conversations was because I knew that leaving the box had nothing to do with leaving them. You needed to take them out of the box. You needed to take your limited belief about their capacity for
love and destroy that, so you could see how much they really love and support you. And that’s when you were really surprised because I said, “did you talk to your mother, did you talk to your broth- ers, did you talk to your family, did you talk to your church?” Finally, you did, and you were so blown away because you had them in a box as much as you thought they had you in a box.
B: The unthinkable happened. They all accepted me. We all began to grow. We all stepped outside of that box and we now see love in a different way, in a different light. We don’t place any limits on it, and we don’t place any boundaries on it.
H: So now, at the time of this interview, we go back to Lakeshore. The last time we were there, the chapel was there, and it was all walled in. Now, they’ve turned it into a public space, and they took the walls down off the church. We did the photo- shoot there, and when I told you what the metaphor was...
B: blew my mind.
H: We were within fifty yards of that same spot.
B: Yes, we were. I want to say God saw what happened that day and said, “you guys are going to now be the testament of the new movement of the church.”
H: Boom—outside the walls. Once we got outside the box, you started coming over
to my house a lot. We started having these conversations about dreams without deadlines, turned into nightmares. Dreams need details and a plan and a deadline. You said, “Well, what do you do?” I said, “First of all, let’s identify the skill sets that you
need.” You identified that you wanted to act, you wanted to do music, you wanted
to speak, that you had all these things that you wanted to do. I said, “you need to start working on your core competencies, on your map. You need to have structure.” To your credit, you started doing that.
B: I did. I knew I wanted to be an actor, so I remember I ran into a friend of mine a couple of years back at an event with Travis, and we began to talk and I said, “I want to work with you; I really have
a passion for acting.” He said, “I teach this class, and it’s going to cost such
and such,” so out of my pocket I began
to spend money on the class. I began
to invest in my future twice a week in acting, out of my pocket.
H: You do know it doesn’t become real, though, until you start investing.
B: Absolutely.
H: You know you believe in something and that you’re committed to something when you are willing to invest time, talent, and treasure. You did the same thing
with dance.
B: My fiancé was in town, and we were at the movies. I started dancing at the end of the movie, and I see this other guy danc- ing. He told me about his dance studio, so I started going to his dance class pretty much every Monday—learning choreog- raphy for an hour, and getting as much knowledge and dance information and wisdom as I possibly could.
H: And you started going to the gym.
B: I did. It started with Travis. Talk about investing—I didn’t have the extra funds to do that. But I would travel thirty minutes away from my home, and I would go to the gym and hang out with Travis. We would lift weights, and I began to gain a knowl- edge of human anatomy. Then I got a gym membership, and I just kept going.
H: I asked you to write music every day. You said, “I don’t have the equipment.” I said, “you have Garage Band.” I pulled up Garage Band on my iPad and made a song, and I said, “use the tools...”
B: “...use the tools that you have to get what you need done.” Through that,
I learned that you don’t have to wait. Why wait?
H: That’s when I knew you were very serious, when I saw you start to structure your life around your dreams. It went from talk to action. Now you have to try. So here comes The Voice.
B: Here it comes. A buddy of mine, Amy Lynn, made mention of The Voice. We would meet every week to write songs. She messaged me saying we couldn’t meet this particular week. She said to me, “I’m going to try out for The Voice; it’s going to be
in Atlanta. You should go try out.” I said, “No, that’s not for me. I’m just going to stay here in Knoxville and just grind, and hopefully somebody will see me some day.” But the funny thing is, the Lord was pulling at my heart to go on to The Voice, to try out. I went to sing at Cokesbury one night, Concord another night, and then another church another night. At each church, I had someone come to me and ask if I’d ever thought about trying out for The Voice. Then my sister called and she said, “Chris, I was praying for you today, and the Lord told me to tell you that you need to try out for The Voice—not American Idol, not America’s Got Talent, not Sunday Best. You need to try out for The Voice.” As she’s telling me this, I had my laptop open, and I said, “Strawberry, you won’t believe it, but I’m actually filling out the form right now.” She said, “Good, I support you a thousand percent.”
H: You called me and said, “I’m going to Atlanta, but my car’s a little sketchy.”
B: It still is. I remember sitting on your porch, and you came out with a set of keys and handed them to me and said, “Here, it’s my truck. Take it.” You reached into your wallet, grabbed a hundred-dollar bill, handed it to me and said, “Make sure you eat.” I will never, ever forget that day because not only was I investing in myself by taking a leap of faith, you helped me start this journey by investing in me. I appreciate that. It changed my life in so many ways.

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