by Kirk Franklin, seven-time Grammy award winning artist
The greatest Giver of all has given you a pre≠cious giftóyour life. And in order for that gift to be truly valu≠able to you, you need a blueprint.
Because of my background and everything Iíve been through (which youíll hear more about later), I am very passionate about being honest, straight up, and transparent about my struggles as a black man, my lack of education, my frustrations with the church that I am so proudly part of, and my failings, first as a man, then as a boyfriend, and then again as a husband and family man. Although I donít have a masterís or a PhD, Iím going to share with you every lesson Iíve learned from a life filled with hard knocks. The street corner was my classroom. The hood was my Harvard. And fourteen years of marriage, four kids, a blended family, and a ministry that has allowed me to travel the world have become my laboratory for life.
ďWhat I have to offer isnít perfection; itís experience.Ē
What I have to offer isnít perfection; itís experience. Iíve lived through what many of you are experiencingóYou see, I didnít have any blueprint when I was coming up, any kind of instruction manual on how to be a man. All you have to do is look at any city corner to know that my education was flawed. And so was my behavior. Many of us had either no blue≠print or a bad one.
I am here to tell you that there is a blueprint for how to handle everything that life throws at you. And itís not Kirk Franklinís blueprint. Itís the blueprint thatís been passed from generation to generation, from Moses on down. Itís been time-tested. And I know that whenever I went against it, I was slapped down and was lovingly forced to come correct.
Here is the heartbeat of this book: We have to deal with real≠ity if weíre going to come up with a blueprint for our lives. And you are definitely going to get slices of reality in this book, a real≠ity that hopefully will set you and those you love on the right road.
Iím letting you know now, the road is going to get a whole lot uglier before it gets better. But that ugliness is there for a purpose. That purpose is to provide you, your spouse, your family, your kids with a spiritual blueprint, one that will help you pass through the ugliness and into hope. If this lost boy forced to be a man can do it, with Godís grace, thereís hope for everybody. We are all fighting for our lives right now. And Iím right there with you. Together weíre going to destroy the walls of frustration and self-doubt, despair, and fear. With hammers in both handsóweíll call them hope and faithóweíll build those walls back up on a solid foundation. The blueprint. Godís blueprint.
Copyright © 2010 by Kirk Franklin. From The Blueprint, published by Penguin Putnam. Printed by permission.