I’ve been very hesitant to write a full blog about this, but not because it might offend someone. The recent events in our nation: the Orlando shooting, a woman killing her two daughters, the constant, systematic purge of black men and women, the Dallas police officer shooting…those things are offensive. You should already be hurt by them. There is no reason for me to be afraid to hurt someone’s feelings by writing a blog addressing those events.
The reason that I have been so hesitant to write a blog about these things is because I would have to immortalize forever through writing the extreme fear and anxiety I have waking up every morning and going to bed every night. I do not fear for myself. Quite the contrary. I have a black father who, in fact, hung the moon. I have a black brother who, in fact, is the most loving person on the face of the planet. I have black nephews who make me wonder if I should bother having children because I don’t think I could love anyone more than them. I have black cousins who are the hardest, toughest men alive…except when it comes to me. I have black uncles who are crazy about me and I don’t even think I could express how much they mean to me. I have black friends who make me wonder what kind of magical man I am going to marry that they will approve of…or that I will respect as much as my friends. I have gay friends who tell me something about Jesus I didn’t know every time I see them. And the list goes on…
I can’t say much about what’s going on because there are no words to describe it. I can’t say much about what’s going on because what’s going on isn’t a series of events to me; it’s a question: What’s going on?
I have that feeling where I just want my mommy. I have been through an awful lot in life. But this is so different. And the most different part about it is that I wasn shocked and disappointed in so many people I’ve known for years. The lack of grace and compassion has deeply disturbed me. Suddenly Christians no longer believe in grace, but rely on someone’s criminal record or Facebook posts to rationalize why the person was “probably a bad person” because “your past says a lot about you.”
I don’t believe they’re not Christians anymore, I just think it’s time for a Churchwide heart check. A reality moment where we all come to terms with what we believe, about both secular and societal issues.
Mostly, it hurts me because I feel that in friends’ unexplained quests to objective, they’ve overlooked the fact that someone they claim to love (me) is just as black as the person whose murder they are trying to justify. It makes me feel as if they have been purposefully overlooking the fact that I have been black this whole time in order to be friends with me. Suddenly, when I say #blacklivesmatter, they think I am a racist? Since when have things been so cut and dry? Why are people reading things I didn’t type?
I remember in college wanting to get an apartment with a friend. She was white, and told her parents that I was “black, but not black black,” because otherwise her parents wouldn’t approve. I think about that every time something like this happens and people who say they love me have something idiotic or insensitive to say online. Is it because they think it won’t apply to me?
With every tragedy that’s happened, people spark up a gun control debate. Have we become so desensitized to death and grief that our immediate response is to reason out why or why not this is happening? What happened to being sad?
You know how atheists always argue and try to convince people there is no God? For what? At least religious people are trying to save souls. But nothing happens if there is no God and I believed there was my whole life. In the same vein, what’s wrong with being sad that a human life was lost, and that people across the nation are scared for their lives? One of my friends put it best when he said, “You have nothing to lose by acknowledging injustice.” A life was lost. Grieve with those who grieve. It’s almost biblical.
I might seem all over the place with this post. But if I don’t make sense, it’s probably because nothing much else does to me right now. Trusting and believing in God is all I have right now, and I’m praying more than ever for protection for me and my loved ones. Every time, though, that thought just creeps up, “Did the people killed not have someone praying for them?” The most powerful thing I can do – praying – feels the most helpless.
But friends, this is where faith becomes faith, and not just hope. Do we really believe God is in control? Do we really believe that we should be taking care of our neighbor and loving like Someone who died for us when we were criminals? It’s time to act like you believe there is more to this life. If this was the end, if this was all there was to it, then I could see the concern. I could understand why we’re up in arms. But this isn’t real life! This isn’t what our hope is in. Our purpose is beyond this. We’re supposed to be showing people Jesus – not our opinions, not our knowledge of the law. Just Him. He’s the only One that can give us Peace, and the only One who will still be standing when everything else fades.
So what’s it gonna be?