“Jesus crossed every barrier between people, including the greatest barrier of all- the division between God and humankind. He is our peace, and because of his life, death, resurrection, and coming return, those who believe in Jesus not only have God’s presence with us but in us through the Holy Spirit. Therefore, we have the power, through God, to leave behind the compromised Christianity that makes its peace with racism and to live out Christ’s call to a courageous faith. The time for the American church’s complicity in racism has long past. It is time to cancel compromise. It is time to practice courageous Christianity.”
I can’t sleep because I can’t stop thinking about how George Floyd couldn’t breathe.
I can’t stop thinking about him.
I can’t stop thinking about Jesus, and how His heart was breaking, but He was right there, with George. Whispering to Him “I am Here, I am with you.”
I can’t stop thinking about the embrace of our Loving Father he felt and the words he heard when he entered into eternity, “well done, my good and faithful servant”.
I can’t stop thinking about the day when every white, brown, black, and sunburned knee will bow and every single tongue will confess. Confess that Jesus Christ is Lord and be faced with the reality that He is their creator. The Maker of Heaven and Earth. The Maker of every hair type, skin color, mountain, and sea.
George loved God. He baptized lost people and helped bring them into a relationship with God. George was my brother, and if you believe in the name of Jesus, then he was yours too. I long for the day I step into the threshold of eternity with my brother and experience the same embrace of our Loving Father.
But right now, in this country, it is more apparent to me than ever that we have an enemy. An enemy who has attacked us from the earliest days of our nation. Devising America’s original sin, slavery.
Yes, we have made strides away from this evil, but the adversary is still fighting to hurt us and the implications of slavery are still causing enormous amounts of both pain and fear.
Each time another injustice is recorded or reported I think about the pain and fear that many of my friends, neighbors, classmates, coworkers, and teachers have felt for much of their lives. Pain that is caused by the treatment their communities receive. Fear that this could have happened to them or a loved one.
I think about the 99% white town I grew up in and the 1% who were bullied and isolated because of the color of their skin.
I think about my first visit to South Carolina, and the middle school receptionist who casually stated that “Target and Chick-fil-A are for white people and black people go to Walmart and McDonald’s, that’s just the way it is around here”.
I think about the white boy at the high school party who told me it was okay to call a black boy there the most horrific word I knew of. Only to be met with a hug from the latter boy and the words “it’s okay, I’m used to being called that”.
I think about my former boss and how she legally could not drink from the water fountain at the local park when she was growing up. The same park I used to sunbathe at under the shadow of a statue. A statue of a man who defended slavery, referring to it as a “positive good”.
I can’t stop thinking about the little girl who I used to help with her homework. She witnessed the execution of loved ones. In her own church. Because of the color of their skin.
Each time I run I think of Ahmaud.
Each time I read my Bible I think of the brown baby who was born in a manger to save the world. The WHOLE world.
I’m brought back to the words of that beautiful Child’s Father, “As I live, every knee will bow to me, and every tongue will confess to me”, Romans 14:11.
If you are blind to these injustices, I pray that your eyes will be opened.
If you feel hopeless, I pray that the God of Hope will fill you and comfort you.
The Good News is that the battle has already been won. The enemy IS defeated.
Hear these truths:
If you’re at the end of your rope, Jesus calls you blessed.
The Kingdom of Heaven is yours.
If you are mourn, Jesus calls you blessed.
You will be comforted.
If you are meek, Jesus calls you blessed.
You will inherit the whole earth.
If you hunger and thirst for justice, Jesus calls you blessed.
You will be filled.
If you show mercy, Jesus calls you blessed.
You will be shown mercy.
If your heart is pure, Jesus calls you blessed.
You will see God.
If you are working for peace, Jesus calls you blessed.
You will be called the children of God.
If you are persecuted for doing right, Jesus calls you blessed.
For yours is the kingdom of Heaven.
SLF Class of 19-20
Salt Lake Fellows Collaborative