The Blueprint is a transparent approach to talking about issues— from marriage to politics to sex and religion—and it’s from my perspective. Not from a Princeton, mainline, protestant, evangelical or liberal viewpoint, but from a 2009 Christian moderate with swag.” – Kirk Franklin
Kirk took a few minutes out of his busy schedule to provide Elev8 with an exclusive interview regarding his new book “The Blue Print”
OW: Why did you decide now was the time to write a book?
Kirk: “It wasn’t an idea of my own. People in the audience wanted a book at the conference I was speaking at. People would ask for a book. It was time to do one a book. People kept asking for a book in the audiences. My team began saying that it’s time to start the book. The process started and here we are now.
OW: In your book you speak about embracing the Non Sexy You wrote “We never want the lows and only want the highs. How do we deal with that?”
Kirk: “That was just a way to define the blahs. To define the things that is not prime time news. It helps dealing with those everyday things. Those are really divinely ordered things. You don’t go running to those things. There was never a time where you say you are going to just love this. When you see them try to strive to look at them through a Divine lense. To know there is a deeper purpose for them. Recognize that there is a deeper plan for this. plan .See this as an opportunity for character growth. This is an opportunity to practice not being selfish. This is an opportunity to practice sacrifice. We have them all around them we just never get a chance to connect them to a Divine lens. If we took that opportunity to see things to see things in a Divine Plan.”
OW: As a father and a husband what do we tell do we tell our young men and women who are colored by the facets of reality television and are colored by our current world’s thinking?
Kirk: “That is the question of the new Millennium. It is the ability to walk into a room of cigarette smokers and be able to leave out not smelling like cigarettes. I think that will forever be the battle. I don’t think there are couple of just a three steps program. It is ongoing lessons of successes and mistakes and lessons learns. Trying to really glean from other lives and try to learn from them. To be well aware of what it is before we walk into it. It all has to do with mentoring. Older men who share their stories and invest in our young men.”
OW: What is the advice to young married people and relationships?
Kirk: “Premarital counseling or the lessons I learned before I got married. Those things didn’t equip me to be the best husband that I could be. . There were still some experiences that I carried from my old life that I carried into my relationship. I was not taught enough to know that the altar where you get married is not magic. Something doesn’t happen magically when you put the ring on. The problem is that most couples that are about to get married that everything is such a fantasy. It’s a fairytale movie. You think that it’s going to change everything. That day has no power. Two years, three years later it doesn’t change anything. That day has no power to reprogram the mind .That was very disappointing for me. I was really thinking and hoping that this would do some magic and when it didn’t do that I realized I still had the old scars. What transforms us is the changing of our thinking.”
OW: Throughout the entire book you stress honesty. There was a strange backlash from within the African American community. How did you deal with the strange backlash from your telling the truth?
Kirk: “We are a prideful people. It taught me in respective that as a society we are more comfortable watching people fall than we are of people testifying about their failings. Watching them fall we can participate as spectators, when they confess that they fall we can see that we are participators.”
OW: How do we educate our young men and women about sex and marriage?
Kirk: “I think it’s unfair sometimes that we expect something from them that they are not equipped for. It is the responsibility of our council, elders, and pastors in their walk to guide them. We need to make sure that we are not putting those people in the way of life that they are not prepared for. We need to teach them about the high cost of sex. We need to tell them about the high cost of sex. We need explain the consequences that you can’t put a condom on our heart; you can’t put a condom on your soul. “
OW: Do you feel that we have lost ourselves in quick blips of texting, tweeting and face booking?
Kirk: “Have we lost character building opportunities? There are times I see things. Teenage boys coming out the store and they don’t hold the door open for wife. They may bump into her they don’t apologize. There have been times when I’ve seen a guy coming out of the store and he doesn’t even hold the door. When did we lose that? What is that about? When you have character it’s very difficult to be the CEO of a company and you have people that are being laid off and they have no jobs and you take money and re do your office. You will have people standing on unemployment lines and you take money and redo your your carpet. That is a disconnect.”
OW: What were the differences between writing the book and writing a song?
Kirk: “It was mainly intellectual. It was disciplined. One thought has to be a whole. In music you have more emotions. I had to discipline myself. One thought can be a whole chapter.”
OW: What was the most difficult part to revisit?
Kirk: “There were several things whether it was the parents and the parenting. Some of the illustrations I had to use. Dealing with the abandonment issues. Those things are kind of painful. At the same it is also healing to keep getting it out to talk about. I am a work in progress.”
OW: What would you tell a young man who has no support system?
Kirk: “Your spiritual relationship with the Lord is do or die. It cannot be an option. God the Father, God the son are waiting to have an intimate relationship with you. It’s not just about when you are in trouble. It does the father’s heart so much joy. It’s not a call when you are trouble or you need some money.”