I have had an expereince somewhat similar to this a few different times in my life. Not exactly the same, but I can relate to it. Watch it and let me know what you think, I think it is good for us as a nation to continue to dialogue around the subject of race and diversity. Freestyle with me…
It’s the same old story, nothing new. White woman (Bonnie Sweeten) and her daughter (Julia) head south from Bucks County PA to Florida. Of course not before Bonnie claims that two black men abducted her and her daughter throwing her in the back of the trunk. Aside the fact that we already know that she was lying and has been found fine with her daughter in Florida… I am troubled (not surprised) that the same old stereotype was used. Any time you through in that black men did anything to a white woman it becomes instant national news. Had it been 2 white men blamed, we might not have even heard about it other than solely on local news. Why did she have to go there? I mean really, as a black man I got enough stares, looks and instant mistrust in certain neighborhoods already, I don’t need people thinking I possibly have abducted a white woman and her child as well. Ya see when blacks are believed to have committed a crime, they will grill any brotha within a 10 mile radius. But if she said white men, or just “men” without having to get racial, it would not have provoked any already sensitive stereotype. At the end we have not moved that far from the 1931 Scottsboro boys case.
Check this Korean praise team out and let me know what ya think!
Freestyle with me…
If someone didn’t pick it up from reading the bible, all one would need to do is look around (or inward) to see that we are comprehensively cracked and broken people. We are so distant and apathetic toward God, that it is embarrassing. Then of course, there a many of us who disregard God’s existence and imprint on all creation all together.
Our relationships with others is fractured as well. We lie, steal, commit adultery, become jealous, divide, hate, and kill one another. For those that do not commit those more outwardly vicious acts, let it play out inwardly with their thoughts and emotions. The damage we do to one another is clear evidence of our broken state.
Of course, we do not only do things to others, but we also have things done to us as well. We are betrayed, picked on, lied to, abused, mistrusted, and manipulated by others, leaving us even more damaged than we already were. Not to mention the harm that we do to ourselves as well, self hatred and self deceit, insecurities and fear, pride and ego, laziness, gluttony, and the list can go on and on. In the end we are left like a self contained island of disaster.
I would be wrong to ignore how we relate communally and globally as well. Because as messed up people, we make decisions that affect whole communities and other people groups all around the world. We are greedy, hoarding for ourselves and leaving little to nothing for others, we are apathetic towards others sufferings, we step on the powerless for our own gain. We stereotype others into villains, so that we might justify our actions against them, and we make distinctions from our own group, so that some can receive special privileges. All of this leaves our society systemically and structurally impaired.
We are comprehensively cracked and broken in every possible way and dimension. This is not a Calvinist piece on our total depravity, so we can sit around in a circle and dis on ourselves as a form of religious piety. Rather, I wonder how many places there are available for cracked and broken people to come together. My experience is that sadly the church is the last place where people can come together honestly and authentically, sharing their vulnerabilities and weak points. In church, we would rather put on a show as though we are perfect and deal with every situation with ease and grace because we are too blessed to be stressed.
How might we begin creating space where people can be transparent and authentic with one another in our brokenness. How might we lead others into cracked community, so that healing might take place? Freestyle with me…
“This, then, is how you should pray,
‘Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name,
your kingdom come,
your will be done
on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us today our daily bread.
Forgive us our debts,
as we also have forgiven our debtors.
And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from the evil one.”
One day Jesus was praying in a certain place. When he finished, one of his disciples said to him, “Lord, teach us to pray, just as John taught his disciples.” (Luke 11:1)
There are so many things we could learn from the Master. We could learn how to love, to die to oneself, to show mercy, to offer restoration, and much more from our Teacher. However when the disciples pulled up their desks, grabbed the notebooks from their backpacks, as well as some #4 pencils, they decided to enroll in Jesus’ School of Prayer 101. They did not ask how to turn water in to wine, how to do that feeding the five thousand trick, no they wanted Jesus to teach them how to pray. Are you enrolled in Jesus’ School of Prayer? And if so what are you learning? Freestyle with me…