There’s been a lot going on in the world this week. Okay, this month. Well, yeah, maybe this year.
Recently, the civil unrest regarding the longstanding injustices in our nation have been on the forefront of my mind.
If I’m honest, I struggled this last week. Do I post about this on social media and risk my intentions being misunderstood?
If I don’t post about it, will my intentions still be misunderstood?
I wanted to be patient and respond well. I wanted to be proactive and not reactive. I wanted my words and actions to be meaningful and intentional. Some people can collect their thoughts quickly, but I’m not one of those people.
Social media is ONE way for me to speak out against injustice, but I also desire to be LIVING out that life.
I wanted to speak up against the sin of racism, but I didn’t want to fall into the trap of self-glorification.
Trying to show yourself worthy or righteous by your own merit is sin, because it denies your need for God. I did not want to find myself in a place where I was seeking the approval of man.
In the end, it shouldn’t be about what we are posting as much as what we are actually DOING. How are we actually LIVING? Are we getting on our knees in prayer? Are we having the hard conversations and cleansing the filth from our own hearts?
Living in the will of God is the DOING. It is the ACTION. Posting on social media ought to MERELY reflect that.
Speaking out against injustice is something God has called us to do. I seek only the approval of God, but in order to do so I need to lay myself and my own reputation aside.
God knows our hearts. He knows what is really going on behind the scenes; the lives we touch and the love we show. Does that mean we don’t publicly call out sin and wrongdoing? Of course not! But it does mean that simply calling it out can’t be ALL that we do.
I’ve had friends and family unfollow my social media accounts in recent days after I said that “black lives matter”. I am not trying to be political here, I am merely trying to emphatically confirm that this powerful statement is true: yes, black lives DO matter!
And honestly, though I am saddened that those people who I care about have unfollowed me because they clearly don’t understand my heart and who I am, I can’t let that be the determining factor in what I speak out against, or for.
At the end of the day, I aim to seek the things of God, not the things of man. I am not interested in popularity or the approval of men.
Let me be real clear here, too: when I say that black lives matter, I do not condone the idea that all law enforcement officers are evil. To say that would mean that I am being prejudiced against every single police officer, without even knowing them personally.
I have beloved family members and friends who are law enforcement officers and they are wonderful, kind men and women.
I have beloved family members and friends who are people of color and they are wonderful, kind men and women.
We should not be prejudiced against people of color, or law enforcement officers, or Christians, or non-Christians, or women, or men, or democrats or republicans…..the list goes on and on and on. We need to humanize individuals for who they are: human beings made in the image of God.
This is not a war between black and white, left and right…..this is a war between right and wrong. This shouldn’t be political. Let’s not allow it to become so. Politics are not the answer.
Psalm 146:3 says, “Do not put your trust in princes, in mortal man, who cannot save.”
Psalm 118:9 says, “It is better to take refuge in the LORD than to trust in man.”
Jeremiah 17:5 says, “This is what the LORD says: ‘Cursed is the man who trusts in mankind, who makes the flesh his strength and turns his heart from the LORD.'”
I cite those verses because they bring me to the biggest lesson I am learning during this time: the wisdom of the world is not the answer.
If we as Christians stand for justice right now and forget to mention that God is the original source of true justice, then we are doing it wrong.
If we miss this time to share Jesus with a broken world, then we are doing it wrong.
If we miss the opportunity to bring the glory of reconciliation and healing to God, then we are doing it wrong.
We need to live and love and lead like Jesus. Not as the world would have us do, but as God would have us do.
Let us not allow this movement towards justice leave us hating or rejecting anything but sin and evil.
Let us allow this movement towards justice leave us understanding that we are all made in the image of God, all in need of a Savior and ALL falling short!
Jesus is the answer to it all. I believe that he is asking us to dissolve our spiritual blindness. I believe he is asking us to put on new eyes and a new heart. I believe he is asking us to be listening to the Holy Spirit louder than we are listening to the world.
What does that look like? Here is an example:
Micah 6:8 says:
8 He has told you, O man, what is good;
and what does the Lord require of you
but to do justice, and to love kindness,[a]
and to walk humbly with your God.
Romans 12:9 says, “Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good.”
What is evil? Sin. Racism is born out of sin, but sin is at the root of all evil. We cannot hate even our enemy, or we are no worse than the enemy themselves. Can we hate the harmful actions of our enemy? Yes. Because those harmful actions are sin.
Let us not lose sight of what matters. If we are looking for answers, which the world is currently doing, let those answers point to nothing but Jesus.
He is always the answer.
Proverbs 3:5-6 says, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.”
I often lean on my own understanding, I admit. I often lean on the understanding of others. I repent for it almost daily and ask God to transform my thinking and bring me his discernment and wisdom.
It is a transformative and humbling journey I’m on and it will not end until the day I am perfected through death, in Christ.
I read the other day a quote from a pastor that said, ”we need to be leaning and moving forward right now not with sociology, but with theology.” Our theology ought to define our sociology, not the other way around.
Sociology is the study of people, society, societal problems. Theology is the study of God. We ought to be concerned with how God would like us to respond in this time, not in how the world and people would have us respond in this time.
The Bible says that the sheep know the voice of their shepherd. A wise friend of mine said recently, “Right now, especially, we ought to stop listening to all the voices and listen to THE VOICE.”
I understand that in the world right now, it seems there is a lot of bad news.
But there is also some very GOOD NEWS.
The Bible tells us that Jesus already defeated injustice.
Injustice is born out of sin. Christ’s death on the cross defeated ALL SIN.
So then why does injustice still exist?
Because sin still exists.
So then why does sin still exist?
Well, the Bible tells us that the enemy (Satan) and his ploys (sin and evil) won’t be completely defeated until Jesus returns.
We can be a part of the gradual and life long pursuit of defeating sin in our own lives through the redemption and salvation provided by Christ.
True change begins with us as individuals. We must live and breathe and walk according to the Word of God and according to the Holy Spirit.
And even then, there will always be suffering and evil and sin on Earth until Jesus returns.
But just listen to this:
John 16:33 says, “I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.”
Jesus will overcome.
In the meantime, let us go to war against the sin our own lives.
In the meantime, let us go to war against injustice.
In the meantime, let us bring people to HIM.
In the meantime, let us reflect HIS love to hurting people.
In the meantime, let us bring HIS truth to a hurting world.