“I believe that if everyone took a moment to look at themselves as a lesser man, we’d truly be a better people, and a better nation.”
Ok if you know me personally then it should not come as any surprise that the first person I am going to speak about on Motivation Monday… the person that motivates me in regards to humility & positivity is “The Pope” D’Angelo Dinero aka Elijah Burke.
Many know this man as this…
This is his wrestling character, “The Pope” D’Angelo Dinero (formerly of TNA Wrestling).
Now here’s how I know this man
I went to a TNA House Show one time with a sign that said “Hope you had a pimptastic Birthday” for “The Pope” since I had read it was his birthday the day of the show. A few days before that he held an online chat on his website and I joined up just for the chance to speak with him since I had never really spoken to a wrestler in depth. I’ll admit now that it was purely for chauvinistic reasons I wanted to speak to him… and it was chauvinistic reasons why I made the sign for the show. I wanted to be noticed. I wanted to feel special. I had no humility about it. I was in a mostly negative space at the time and needed something to make me feel important.
Then I got to speak to the man behind the character, Elijah Burke.
Without trying… he (along with others known as the FAM) helped change me in to a more positive man. As I mentioned in last week’s Motivation Monday post, it was with this group and Elijah that I came up with the “I Ain’t Evah Gonna Stop” phrase. Through him, I got to see how humble he was. Yes, he is a man who has traveled the world and been on national TV… but to him he is just a man who has been given some amazing opportunities.
Just by watching him, I could see some characteristics that I wanted people to see in me… for one, he was so positive all the time. Even in the darkest of times for me, he helped me find the positive moments. He taught me about “seasons of life” and that some are stormy, but the clouds will part and the sun will come through. As a wrestling fan, he helped teach me the difference between “fan” and “friend” and when to be what… now when I go to shows I have enough confidence before the show to speak to these people as normal people and not be star struck. I speak to them as a “Friend” but once the show is on, it’s time to be a “fan.” I silently thank him each time that I successfully don’t “mark out” when I get the opportunity to speak to a wrestler.
The man is very well read in the scripture. Thanks to him I can now remember Proverbs 27:2 “don’t brag about yourself – let others praise you.” When Michelle and myself were fortunate enough to travel to Florida to spend an evening with him I was asked to pray before one of our meals. I spoke from the heart and he had thanked me for doing so. He even complimented me on what he said was “a very sincere prayer, which is very rare now a days.” I decided to take the chance to brag on myself and say that I “feel every prayer should be heartfelt and sincere” and he held up a hand and quoted Proverbs 27:2 to me. It took some time but I realized what he was saying and now I strive for that.
Recently he started a movement titled P.I.M.P. which stands for “Positive Influence to/in Many People”. So in other words you should always strive to “be a P.I.M.P.” At Christmas time, we made a donation to the P.I.M.P. movement along with others members of the FAM and he took the money and did something nice at Christmas time. We didn’t find out what it was that he had done with the money until recently.
Here’s a video of what he did with the money raised:
It still amazes me that way over 200 people were helped with a free meal by only 14 people. That is a movement that I can stand behind!
(Editor’s Note: you too can help with this movement by making a donation, big or small, at http://www.theelijahexpress.com)
Through it all, he still is just a man. He does not feel or act that he is better than anyone. That is something that I strive for. I still have moments of “over confidence” but I too am just a man and am not perfect. My friend, Elijah, helped me to realize that.
A lot of people have told me that my attitude has changed a lot over the last few years. I thank them for the compliment, but then just say that I came to a few realizations and started my transformation. I then let them know that what I’m doing is nothing special. It’s simply something that all of us can do. You just have to have the will to make the change.
I still try to remain as humble and positive as possible.
And it’s thanks to Elijah for motivating me to make the change.