In recent weeks the world has taken notice of the long-standing injustice of racism perpetrated against people of color. Many companies, organizations and countries have responded to the brutal killing of an African American in police custody.
Protesters of different races, backgrounds, ages and beliefs are demonstrating their lack of tolerance for this behavior by law enforcement. There must be a remedy to this deep-seated evil that plagues us.
Our convention leaders have spoken out condemning the behavior and practice of racism. Together our voice is clear, but have we done enough?
It is not enough to simply say, “I don’t condone racism or participate in racism.” We must do what we can to be part of the solution. Scripture tells us in 1 John 4 that God loved us and we ought to love others. In fact, if we don’t love others, then the love of God is not in us.
So what does this mean for you and me? I have never protested and don’t see myself doing that in my future. I can’t change legislature and write policies abolishing racism. Yet, I also cannot call myself a Christian and stand by watching the evil, only to hide it under a “bush.”
What I can do is unveil this evil when it occurs around me. I can and should “… Love thy neighbor as thyself” (Mark 12:31).
We can begin by getting to know someone that we don’t know today. It is difficult to hate or mistreat someone with whom you have developed a relationship. We can practice “intentional neighboring.” The root of the problem is sin. Christ’s love is the answer to sin in the world.
We can and should take these issues to the Lord in prayer. He has given us the assurance that we can ask anything in His name and He will do it.
We can know something needs to be done and be a part of the action to expose sinful behavior. We can love like Jesus loved to change the lives of the people around us. It’s time to stop excusing bad behavior and to expose bad behavior.
Since racism still exists in our world, we are not done. We need one more person to take action where God has given us the opportunity. We need one more act of kindness in our neighborhoods. We need one more person to step up as a leader to be an example, through the God-given gifts and talents we have, using them to His glory and honor.
Silence is not being a part of the solution. Saying you are not the problem is not being a participant in racial justice and equality.
We need one more person to do their part. Is that person you?
(EDITOR’S NOTE – Nate Jones is chair of the Biblical Recorder’s board of directors. He is a member of Cross Culture Church in Raleigh, N.C.)