Racism continues to threaten the lives and happiness of our neighbors. Hatred continues to haunt so many. God’s children are being treated horribly. And by many who call themselves Christians.
This is not right. When we are not showing love, we are not showing Christ. When we are not sharing love, we are not sharing Christ. If we are not following love, simply put, we are not following Christ.
“This is My commandment, that you love one another, just as I have loved you.” – John 15:12
As Christians and as Neighbors, we are called to love. To love God. To love ourselves. And to love our neighbors. And our neighbor is everyone. This means we live for kindness, respect, dignity, honor, acceptance, and love. Racism has no place in this calling.
It may sound funny to some, but this is why I became a pastor. I simply did not want to see people treated poorly. I believe everyone deserves respect and dignity. I believe each of us is special and unique. I believe God is not in hatred, because I believe God is love. And I believe that every person is loved by God.
And I believe Black Lives Matter.
Saying this does not mean that other lives do not matter. No one should feel threatened or neglected by this statement. When someone says to a loved one that they matter, it does not mean the person saying it believes no one else does.
But it does allow us to think about black lives.
Being a white male, I will never know what it is like to grow up with a history of bigotry because of the tone of my skin. I will never know what it is like to be treated as just one trait, and not for the many attributes that make me a unique individual. I will never know what it is like to be born, already having to defend who I am.
But not knowing does not mean I tune it out. It means I listen more. And seeing others mistreated, never means ignoring it.
Witnessing hatred never means joining in.
I encourage us all to pray for people, harmed by hatred. Pray for black lives. Pray and learn how to be an advocate and how to stand up to injustice and racism.
We are all meant to love and to be treated with love. We are meant to share kindness. We are meant to care for and help each other. We are all meant to live as neighbors.
May we all grow more in our love for God, for ourselves, and for each other.