Without my Father, my vision would have been nearsighted. My hopes unfulfilled. My destiny towards Greatness, never actualized. -Shanna A. Jefferson
I remember the day as if it were yesterday. The words “brain dead” still resonate with me. Certainly, those words weren’t foreign to me as I’ve heard it before but never so directly. The day was Tuesday, October 7, 2008 when I received that call. My father was rushed to the ER upon being found unresponsive at home. The next day upon arriving at the hospital and for the first time in my life, I observed my Father…motionless, helpless…essentially without life. And I felt helpless. I couldn’t fight for my Father as he had so tirelessly done for me, his family, and others.
On Monday, October 13, 2008 my Father was called to his Heavenly Home by the Almighty God. Being my Father’s child, I knew I had to find greater purpose not only in his Homegoing but his life and legacy.
My Father, George Murray Jefferson, (08/10/29-10/13/08) was born in Mayesville, SC to the late William McKinley Jefferson and Julia Dix Jefferson.
He believed in justice and was always ready to fight for people who were unable to fight for themselves. He stood for what was right, even if he had to stand alone.
Believing education is the key to unlocking doors, my Father was a lifelong learner and educator. From the cotton fields of Mayesville, SC to the classrooms of Allendale, SC and to the streets of injustice throughout our Nation, my Father lived a life of Public Service.
My Father was a Member of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc., Allendale Masonic Lodge No.53, and the NAACP. He was a Community Activist, Civil Rights Activist and Political Activist. He believed in justice and was always ready to fight for people who were unable to fight for themselves. He stood for what was right even if he had to stand alone.
We’ve all experienced pain, disappointment, and adversities in life. Perhaps, it was the homegoing of a loved one, medical issues, relationship trauma, abuse, or financial stressors. Please know that your greatest adversities in life can fuel your greatest successes. Nearly 9 years following the Homegoing of my Father, the pain persists albeit to a lesser intensity. And what transcends the pain beyond any other measure is the purpose I have birthed.
One of the greatest ways I have turned the pain of losing my dear Father into purpose is with the establishment of a scholarship fund in his memory. With the blessing of my Father’s twin brother, the late Great Honorable W.M. Jefferson, I announced the scholarship fund on their 85th birthday in the presence of family and friends at Ebeenzer AME Church in Mayesville, SC.
The George M. Jefferson Agent of Change Scholarship Fund has awarded over $2000 to graduating high school seniors engaged in public service. To learn more about the scholarship fund, visit http://www.thedestinationgreatnessfoundation.org.
Turn Your Pain into Purpose
You must utilize the painful experiences of your past to fuel your purpose in life. How have you turned your pain into purpose?
3 Steps to Take Your Power Back
1. Acknowledge the pain-One of the key stages of change is to acknowledge that there is an issue. It is okay to experience pain. Pain is an evitable part of life. However, you have the choice to turn your pain into purpose.
2. Reframe the pain-Don’t get stuck in accepting your pain as a way of life. Instead, shift your mindset and reflect on how you can gain understanding, healing, and spark a greater level of empowerment as a result of your pain.
3. Share your story.-There is power in sharing your story as it contributes to not only healing for you but will serve as inspiration for others.
Turn Your Pain Into Purpose is one of the tools from Shanna’s latest book, The Greatness Toolbox: 33 Tools for Success. To learn more about how to turn your pain into purpose, schedule a 45-minute “Tools for Success” Power Session with Shanna today.