A Christian Response To Racial Tension
I have hesitated to write on this topic, but I received a request to address the issue. Please read this with an open mind and heart because that is really the only way racial reconciliation can occur.
First off, I am a minority. I was raised in a primarily wealthy white community. I had racial slurs thrown my way and judgment tossed in my direction.
The sad part is, I often received the most racial hatred from people of my own race.
I was called names by people who felt I wasn’t Mexican enough. Well, yeah, I was born and raised in California in my family with Mexican descent. I had other individuals, not of my race, lump me in a group due to my heritage. I really couldn’t win.
I had friends from all races and ethnicities. I don’t think I ever walked with a chip on my shoulder over the racial ignorance, but I also wasn’t a person who celebrated my heritage either. Although, I loved Taco Tuesdays and my grandma’s tamales.
Although, just because I never experienced it, doesn’t mean it didn’t happen to others.
I think that’s what I want to address in this post. I cannot begin to understand the full level of racial inequality that exists, but I would be horribly wrong to believe it doesn’t.
Too many people try to brush off the racial divide because they have never experienced it personally or witnessed it. When that happens, the empathy needed to address the issue has been eradicated.
People are hurting all over the nation, actually the world, due to social class structures and cultural/racial division. In our country, the United States of America, we are witnessing people finally feeling that they have their voice to create change.
Now, the reality is, the way many people (according to the media) are expressing their frustration is not the correct way of creating change. However, it is catching the attention of the world.
We must recognize that there is more than what the media is showing.
I know of young people who have been rising to the top of their situations and speaking for change. I have seen it in action. I have watched young people step onto the steps of Capitol Hill with a mission. They didn’t need to be armed with anything but their voices, minds, and hearts. They spoke truth into the matters and mad ate most of their opportunities to create change in their communities.
There are groups of people who stand for “Black Lives Matter” without clenched fists, but opened hands. They want reconciliation, they want peace, and they want to restore hope into a broken system and nation. They are not getting the publicity because they do not make a “sexy”story.
We will see what we want to see. We can choose to ignore the true story or rest in the narrative being painted.
From a Christian perspective, this shouldn’t be an issue at all. We should be embracing the stories.
We have a God who stepped into the mess of humanity. He walked with the tension of culture. He saw the needs of His need of His creation and became flesh to be with them in the world.
Now for us, as followers of Jesus, we are called to do what He did. We are called to interact with the tension. We are meant to be people who deliver the message of reconciliation and hope.
We recognize our connection to all people through Christ. We are all apart of creation.
When we ignore the cry of others, we ignore the cry of our brothers and sisters.
The tension is real. The division is present. Our hearts must move to bring people together for the glory of their Creator.
Let us not walk in the narrative created by media, but be a part of the true story of Christ.
May we be moving into peace with others. May we honor the stories of pain and brokenness of people. May we be the change agents in our communities, nation, and world. May we shine a light in the chasm that has been created.
Peace and blessings friends.