Obviously the United States is a racial powder keg in the midst of explosion. Many would argue that it has already exploded.
It is quite difficult for me to write about these things. Say something just the wrong way and you will offend someone. Don't say anything, just paint with a vanilla brush ... then what's the point? And certainly that will offend people as well, as it should, since it is much more deserving a topic than that. But mostly it's difficult not just because of how people might react, but because I desire to be faithful to my Lord in all things. Even this one.
The Black Lives Matter movement along with the current racial tensions in this country, especially in regard to law enforcement, has been a national and reoccurring issue of the last many months. This has only been exasperated by the latest in the unfolding national nightmare of an attack on police officers in Dallas, TX in which 5 officers were killed, 7 injured, along with 2 civilians while serving at a peaceful protest. This happened in conjunction with a similar event in Bristol, TN. All of this happening on the heels of another black man being shot after a routine traffic stop in Falcon Heights, MN, while most of the tragedy was streamed via Facebook live. This along with another police shooting of a black man in Baton Rouge, LA this week has made for what seems in the media, and in reality, to be a frequent and recurring issue in our law enforcement and justice departments nation wide.
Due to the violent and graphic nature of these events I am not hyperlinking any of the stories. I'm sure you have undoubtedly heard of them already.
I saw a video of James Blake last year, a national tennis superstar (as well as a cancer surviver and a personal sports hero), being slammed to the ground outside of his hotel for being wrongly identified as a suspect in a crime ... wait for it ... because of the way he looked. The officer was criticized for using excessive force.
"These things are extremely difficult to dialogue about. But dialogue we must. Find solutions we will."
Obviously all of these things are tragic and no one wishes they were happening. They are extremely difficult to dialogue about and find solutions to, as all emotionally charged subject matters are ... but dialogue we must. And find solutions we will.
As a Christian we strain towards what is ahead. Whether you engage politically or not, whether you cry out via social media or not, whether you support the black lives matter movement or not ... whatever you do, do it all in the name of the Lord (Col 3:23). Do it in a way that represents Jesus (Phl 1:27) in a manner worthy of your calling (Eph 4:1). Your calling is a heavenly one (2 Cor 5:2), for your citizenship is not of this world (Phl 3:20), but of a kingdom ruled by a king that transcends this place, this hatred, this division, this violence, this animosity, this strife ... and this suffering. We patiently wait for this kingdom to reign fully.
In the meantime whatever happens, conduct yourselves in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ. Phl 1:27