Hey Brother – Is your House in Order? By Kenn Roberts

The year 2020 in American society will be remembered as a pivotal influence on our view of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness for decades to come. There is not one aspect of our existence together that has been removed from disruption. Madness, mayhem and malfeasance in the public square have altered our minds, methods and mannerisms in private settings. I suspect, with only ten weeks to go in this year, what’s ahead of us will make the last ten months pale in comparison. It seems like a cloud of chaos is following us at every turn.  And yet, we press forward with the belief that what we are experiencing now will not always look like this in the future. Trusting that we will find the elusive new normal and regain ahold of our true north.  Until then, we must get ready and be ready. It begs the question, “Is your House in order?”

A House of Leadership

Let’s get really clear from the very beginning. When I ask you if your “House” is in order, I am not referring to a building where people live. I am not talking about how many bedrooms or bathrooms you have. I am not concerned about the size of your lawn or how many cars you can park in your garage. Those are examples of material things. As a man, you have a unique responsibility in the family especially when you are a father and/or husband. It is a position of leadership. And if this time period has taught us anything, at the very least, we have got to realized that it is time for the Black man to reemerge, redefine and reimagine his presence on the American stage. So when I am talking about your “House”, I am referencing your role as a patriarch to your immediate family with deference to your ancestors and honor to your descendants. The “House” of your name. It stops, starts or continues with you. 

A House of People

Getting your “House” in order is about building on generational assets of knowledge, culture and sacrifice. We must stop the destruction caused by self-hate running rampant in our communities.  Instead, we should focus on the history, the names and the places that have become points of light in the shared memory of those who look like us. The person or people in your life that stood up for you when you could not see beyond the pain of the moment. The ones that nurtured your mind, showed you what love looks like and disciplined you when your behaviors fell short of your potential. Remember, the most notable cultures revere their elders and the wisdom that they share. We must learn this as well and give homage. Respect is not a badge demanded by force but yielded to the titans whose lessons allowed us to see more broadly what we could not see initially.

Getting your “House” in order is about leveraging your skills, talents and gifts that define your impact and leave a legacy. Nothing will be the same when the pandemic is over. Schooling, working and socializing will require more effort, creativity and accountability. And technology usage, access and connectivity are not luxury items anymore but essential tools for daily living. Our homes are not just a place of refuge but central hubs of economic, educational and religious development. Your active participation in making this transformation for your “House” must start now. 

A House of Prayer

Getting your “House” in order is about your spiritual journey and your walk with God to understand your purpose. If we are going to be truthful with each other, this step had been my weakest link. I allowed the pursuit of everything else to block the blessings that come from courageously acknowledging God as the source of my success. If it weren’t for the faithfulness of the prayer warriors in my tribe, I would still be a lost soul thinking that being good was good enough to see God. They prayed it forward so that the “House” would be covered. But now, the time has come for us to man up, stand out and lead on bended knee! We have borrowed once too many from these deposits. For our “House” to continue, it is our responsibility to pray it forward for ourselves, our wives and our children.

I would argue that none of what I have shared should be unfamiliar. Matter of fact, it was designed to be this way from the very beginning. And for a variety of different reasons, we lost our way. Let’s not use them as excuses anymore. It’s time to go home, lay claim to our “House” and lead with the purpose God has planned for us. We can do this…together.


Kenn Roberts is the Principal and Lead Consultant of Discover Leadership LLC. With more than three decades in both corporate America and the US military, Kenn has developed a deep understanding of team development and an extensive expertise in advising leaders on how to leverage human resources. As a leader, he has held critical HR roles during major business mergers and acquisitions in industries experiencing uncertainty and turmoil. He has coached leaders on how to assess and strengthen their skills at eliciting peak performance from team members without sacrificing the company’s culture, its values or its mission. Unleashing the power generated when individuals understand their purpose and worth leads to more personal satisfaction, consistent achievement and a commitment to excellence. Kenn has convert these experiences into game changing insights and transformations for individuals, small businesses and non-profit organizations.

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