Yes, I am writing about Tupac Shakur. If you are unfamiliar with Tupac Shakur, he was a very famous rapper in the early 90’s until he was fatally shot and killed 1996. He was very good at what he did. He took rap lyrics to a deeper level as he would often include the struggles of life and his deep feelings to communicate a message that he wished to put out to his audience. I can say this with full confidence, if Tupac knew what the secular rappers of today were putting out lyrically, he would be greatly ashamed. But nonetheless, I am not going to write about Tupac Shakur’s life, or his music for that matter. I want to talk about the God of all grace and the God of the Bible that I hope that Tupac knew, but from the outside looking in, he did not know. I want you to read this poem written by Tupac:
Sometimes when I’m alone
Cause I am on my own.
The tears I cry are bitter and warm.
They flow with life but take no form
I Cry because my heart is torn.
I find it difficult to carry on.
If I had an ear to confide in,
I would cry among my treasured friend,
but who do you know that stops that long,
to help another carry on.
The world moves fast and it would rather pass by.
Then to stop and see what makes one cry,
so painful and sad.
and no one cares about why.
This poem communicates deep emotion. It communicates the longing desire to have someone close that will hear the inward struggles of a man and that would be a comfort in time of need. You see, as Tupac began to climb the rap ladder, he had everything. He had money, he had fame, he had girls, mansions, cars, and everything else that our world communicates fame to be. Yet, how can someone who seemingly had everything write something like this? How could a guy that has seemingly gained the whole world, be so broken inside that he has no one close to him that will see him through hard times.
I immediately think of the words of Jesus when I read this poem. Mark 8:36-37, “For what does it profit a man to gain the whole world and forfeit his soul? For what can a man give in return for his soul?” You see, Tupac had gained it all, but seemingly lost his soul. He lost his soul to the point that he even felt alone here on this earth. We can do all that we can do in order to have others view us through the lens of the world, but ultimately what is this result? Loneliness. Loneliness in this life and wrath for eternity. Tupac had people around him all day everyday that would have done many things for him, but were these people around him only because of his status? Were these people around him because he was a famous rapper and had lots of money? Would they have been around him if he was just a regular dude that worked at the convenient store on the corner? I do not know but my guess is probably not.
Let’s look at this from another angle. Maybe you are a believer and you find yourself echoing the same words that Tupac has penned. Maybe you find yourself so lonely and having no one to hear your deepest struggles and to comfort you in your sorrow. I would first begin by asking about your church family. Are you actively involved with the people of God? Do you find yourself gathering with God’s people on a regular basis? If so, are you involved or are you at a distance? Are you trying to pursue relationships with Gods people or are you standing on the outside looking in because you do not want people to know you? One way that believers can avoid such feelings as Tupac’s is to be active with God’s people. During times of heartache, stress, and depression, the people of God can play a tremendous role in a variety of ways in order to minister to you and to those around you. Be involved and build relationships. It is godly relationships that are truly meaningful and that will last.
Also, more importantly than that, know that you have God. If you are a believer you have a direct connection to the God of the universe. Not only do you have the connection through Jesus Christ, but you have a God that knows you intimately and that loves you despite your inadequacies. This Great God has promised not to leave you or forsake you. In Joshua chapter 1 as God Joshua is being set up to lead God’s people into the Promise Land, God gives Joshua some comforting information that is also true for His people today. He tells him in verse 5, “No man shall be able to stand before you all the days of your life. Just as I was with Moses, so I will be with you. I will not leave you or forsake you.” What a comfort this would have been for Joshua as he was given the task of leading God’s people into the Promise Land. What a comfort this is to born-again believer’s as well as they are given the same promise. Along the same lines, Paul writes this in Romans 8:31, “What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?” If you are Christ’s, He is for you. If He is for you, no one can be against you.
I wonder what Tupac’s life would have looked like if he understood these truths. I wonder if he would still be alive? I wonder if his music would have brought glory to God, and in turn, others would have given their lives to Christ. But, the sad reality is, Tupac used his talents for his own personal gain. His own gain which led to a life of seemingly misery and ultimately murder. Believer, if you find yourself struggling with wondering if anyone cares, God cares. His love in infinite, His mercy is sweet, and His grace is everlasting. Proverbs 3:5-6, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.”