I had initially thought of keeping the themes for our June Newsletter a little bit lighter; however, given some of the recent developments in our World with the public death of George Floyd at the hands of police and the ensuing protests and riots, I feel it is important to share some thoughts on injustice and our role to respond appropriately, as a community that embraces diversity.
I certainly don’t consider myself an expert on the topic; however, I do feel anger, grief, and shock that we are still witnessing racism and hate in this day and age, all because another human being happens to have a darker shade of skin. I strongly believe that God created each one of us beautifully in His image and, inherently, of utmost and equal value. This means that in God’s kingdom, there ought to be no divide across racial lines, but rather a unity that exemplifies that way we shine our light for Jesus. When Paul writes in Galatians 3, that there is no longer Jew or Gentile, he is essentially saying that our ethnicity or race no longer has any bearing, as we “are one in Christ”.
Due to the fallen world that we live in, there is much division that exists in this world, as is clearly evidenced by what we are hearing on the news. How are we to respond as Christian believers? How are we to show love and support for our black brothers and sisters in our immediate community and larger circles who are mourning and needing our prayers and support? I would like to share ideas from other voices than myself who have given much thought to this.
Former NFL coach Tony Dungy, the first African American head coach to win a Super Bowl with the Indianapolis Colts in 2007 and fellow believer, shared the following:
America is in a very sad place today. We have seen a man die senselessly, at the hands of the very people who are supposed to be protecting our citizens. We have seen people protest this death by destroying property and dreams of people in their own community, the very people they are protesting for. We have many people pointing fingers of blame, painting the opposite side with a broad brush. We have anger and bitterness winning out over logic and reason. We have distrust and prejudice winning out over love and respect.
What happened to George Floyd was inexcusable and it should never happen. Justice needs to be served, but in seeking justice we can’t fall into the trap of prejudging every police officer we see. What started out as peaceful protests have devolved into arson and looting and that should never happen, either. Yes there should be protest. But we do not have license to perform criminal acts because we’re angry.
Today we are a divided country. We’re divided racially, politically, and socio-economically. And Satan is laughing at us because that is exactly what he wants. Dysfunction, mistrust, and hatred help this kingdom flourish.
Well, what is the answer then? I believe it has to start with those of us who claim to be Christians. We have to come to the forefront and demonstrate the qualities of the One we claim to follow, Jesus Christ. We can’t be silent. As Dr. King said many years ago, “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere!” But we can’t go forward with judgmental, bitter, spirits. We need to be proactive, but do it in the spirit of trying to help make things better. And it can’t be just the African American churches. It has to be ALL churches taking a stand and saying “We are going to be on the forefront of meaningful dialogue and meaningful change.” We have to be willing to speak the truth in love but we have to recognize that we are not fighting against other people. We are fighting against Satan and his kingdom of spiritual darkness.
In the words of the Apostle Paul, “Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.” Roman 12:21 NIV
Our own Mrs. McGregor also put together some thoughts along with a spoken word poem that she wrote. Here is a short video that captures her own experiences and challenges us to reflect more deeply on the issue of racism, while providing wisdom and hope.
My hope is that this will spur us on to love each other more deeply, to care for each other more wholly, and to provide an example to the world of the unity that Christ alone can provide to heal brokenness and division.
Click here for my short video update for this week.
J-D Lussier, Principal