Love Each Other

I don’t know what to say or write. My mind and heart have been all over the place the last week.

The recent murders of innocent people of color are unacceptable and shouldn’t be something that keeps happening. To those of you who are working to enact change, we support you. Things need to change, and recent events are just bringing that to the surface.

Here is a comment from one of my best friends around the murder of George Floyd and everything going on. It offers a perspective that I found very helpful and I want to share it with you because he says it much better than I ever could.

“My initial reaction to seeing this news was anger. Most people know when they’ve gone too far unless 1) they don’t know any better (i.e. a child) or 2) they don’t care about the person they are hurting. This situation clearly showed point 2. I already have a very poor view of cops from things that have happened over the years, and while I know that not all cops are like this, it’s hard to feel safe when I see them around.

But on the other hand, we have to look at this from a bigger perspective. As Ephesians says, the battles we face are not against flesh and blood (i.e. this cop), but against rulers of the dark world. No one is born racist. They are taught to be this way by someone who was not, at that time, being influenced by the love of Christ. So while we want to see justice (which is something we should continue to fight for), we have to do it from a place of love. Just as I’m sure that cop did not consider the background behind the man he was hurting, we must remember to consider what that officer must have gone through/learned/experienced to make him show no remorse for his actions.

At the end of the day, all we want from white people is to show that they care. Don’t be afraid to ask us questions. Don’t assume that conversations like these always lead to us generalizing all white people as racist. Don’t let that fear keep you from learning about someone else. And be willing to admit that you’ve made mistakes and you want to change.

Also, it’s important for you to know that some POC, like myself, will take this opportunity to learn from you. As brothers and sisters in Christ, we obviously need to pick up those who are hurting, but good relationships involve some give and take. And while POC need most of the give right now, I also want to be a giver. The way Jesus lived was truly radical, and I think sometimes we miss that.

All while thinking like this, we must remember to never forget the real family that was hurt and continue to love them however we can.

Hope this helps, and I’d love to continue with any other questions you may have. Mindsets change in close and trusting conversation, and I’m glad you’ve made yourself open to that.”

I know I don’t have exactly the right things to say or the perfect response. I promise to do my part to learn and understand how I am contributing.

All I have to say is: Love each other.

-JP

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