Thoughts about America and the topic of racism
Today I wrote an editorial that might never reach your television screen.
But I want to share it with you because I truly believe we have an opportunity to repent for the ills of America - not just the vestiges and heritage of racial hatred, but also the hard-hearted approach we've seen from all races and backgrounds. There is work for all of us to do.
I invite you to read this and ponder... and pray.
God bless you.
Our kids are watching.
That is what keeps repeating in my mind about America.
As I sat up late at night praying and watching the events in Downtown Greensboro and thinking about the pain our nation is reliving – as it has so many times before… for generations…
I sought to answer a critical question.
How do we stop this cycle?
How do we keep our children from inheriting a cycle we failed to extinguish?
Monday, I walked South Elm Street in downtown Greensboro with my kids and my wife.
We shook our heads at the boarded windows.
We talked to our young children about our nation’s history and the concept of respect as we stood outside the smashed window at the International Civil Rights Center and Museum.
And it only became clearer.
We simply cannot afford to recycle the piercing images of policing, the anger that follows and the outbursts of violence by a misguided few – who overwhelm the quest for justice with violent distractions.
And we can not return to the apathy and silence that follows the repair of store windows and the renovation of burned buildings.
The ashes might disappear.
But the souls of Americans will still bleed underneath the veneer of a shaky racial unity.
And more lives will hang in the balance.
We cannot continue to recycle the renegade behavior that causes someone to recoil.
Yes, I am talking about the actions of police officers.
And yes, I am referring to the actions of everyone else.
So where do we find a solution?
How do we end the cycle?
I went to the scriptures so many of us hold dear and even teach to our children.
We must love our neighbor as we love ourselves.
Images and messages of hate and offense scroll on our feeds and screens one after another – originating from many angles.
What if we all decided to stop?
What if we just refused to judge?
What if we caught the revelation that when we love our neighbor – we’re also loving ourselves?
What if we decided we should feel hurt because our brother and our sister is hurt?
Our black brother.
Our white sister.
Our Asian brother.
Our native American sister.
Love knows no bounds.
But where hate begins, love ends.
I won’t claim to know what love looks like for you in your neighborhood, at your job or at your barbershop or nail salon.
But I know how it feels.
We all do.
The concept of agape love is used many times in the bible.
The word refers to the outgoing act of sacrificial love.
The giver decides to give something away – with the needs of the recipient in mind.
Think of it this way.
What if we stop just asking police to be sensitive to cultural and racial distinctions…?
And we started to ask ourselves to dig deep within ourselves to love and understand law enforcement as well?
What if people of color began to ask how can I love people who might not understand me?
Even if it makes me uncomfortable.
If we simply decide to look at each other’s pain and expect to find everyone has their fair share… white and black… and Asian and Muslim… everyone…
We will stop this cycle.
If you believe God made us…
Then you can believe He knows how to love us.
And if we love like Him… as an act of sacrifice… we can end a vicious and damaging cycle…
So our kids don’t have to.