The 116 Life Ep. 5 -Compassion, creativity, and curiosity with the delightful Trip Lee.
There are three things that Trip Lee is passionate about. Compassion, creativity and curiosity.
When asked if he envisioned this almost 17 years after his first release, the Stellar Award winner says, “It’s incredible. I feel very grateful because I don’t know what I thought it was going to be like. I’m not sure even how much I was trying to think very far into the future practically. I just knew that I love hip-hop. I love Jesus. And I’m just trying to make dope music about Jesus.”
The youngest member of the original 116 Clique, loves learning, and advises young people, especially artists, “Posture yourself as a learner. Because not only is it good for your own soul, but when you posture yourself as a learner, you’re not trying to impress the people you’re around…Think about what questions can I ask. How can I learn? Let me ask questions and watch and observe.”
He goes on to say, “If artists can be easily inspired that’s the best thing you can do for yourself as an artist. If you can learn something from anybody, any kind of artist, at any place that’s good. And it should also be a core value for us as believers. Somebody doesn’t have to be more mature than me for me to learn something from them.”
Two weeks after Marcus and Ace broke the internet with the secular Christian collaboration conversation, Trip gently reminds us, “We are made in the image of God. Every single human is made in the image of God. They’ve been made to reflect God. Because we’re sinners that are corrupted, it doesn’t mean that they are not beautiful reflections of who God is in a person.”
Creativity comes from God Trip explains, “For instance, someone is an incredible artist who mirrors God in the way that they create. Songs from nothing, out of their brain. Because there’s corruption in our hearts, we may use that incredible gift and skill, and creativity to say things that are offensive to God. But there’s still this beautiful reflection of who our creator is in the way that we create. So, I can learn from that creativity. In part because God gave them that creativity. They’re reflecting God himself. This is no art in all of creation, that’s ever been made, where God is not the biggest influence on that art!”
Are you familiar with the saying “Curiosity killed the cat”? One of the most interesting pieces of advice Trip Lee gives in this interview is urging us to be curious. “Part of it is the humility to know that there’s so much you don’t know. It’s much easier to interact with the world in a sober-minded way, in a realistic way, and in a compassionate way the more that you understand. Even be curious about the people you spend time with. Your co-worker who always comes in with an attitude, don’t just assume they’re mean. Be curious enough to get to know them. There’s stuff going on in their life.”
He implores us to see curiosity as a posture of our heart. Because we are not all-knowing like God, there is always something more we can understand in any given circumstance that will help us be more like Jesus. “I want to encourage broad curiosity. God made a bunch of stuff. There are things to be grateful for that when we’re too closed off; there are some things that we could be missing out on…I think it honors God to be curious about the world and the people he made in it. and to interact in the world in the most sober, compassionate, faithful way.”
One of the things the rapping pastor enjoys most about learning is the challenge of trying to accomplish something. “It’s part of what makes me ambitious…the joy of learning a new thing. The challenge and the love.” Trip Lee says of learning music production during the pandemic and producing his newest project The End.
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