November, 24, 2014. December, 3, 2014. The events of those dates have occupied my brain. I am married to a black man. I have black sons. My father is a black man. My brother is a black man. Many of my friends have black sons. I directly felt the injustice.
In the days following, more tragic cases have surfaced involving similar injustices as Mike Brown and Eric Garner. It could have been any man; any black man specifically. Chrystal Evans Hurst wrote a timely post. It was published February of this year but is eerily relevant in light of recent events. Benjamin Watson really summed up my feelings about it all. My emotional nerve endings have been super sensitive since November, 24 and only increased in their sensitivity.
But something happened today.
There is a woman at our homeschool group who, from off-color things she has said, strikes me as someone who prefers not to associate with black people. Our homeschool group is mixed but the black families make up about 50%-60% of the group. I have pulled back from having some normal interactions with this woman because I don’t want her to slip up on the wrong day and I be present. (The verbal licking I could give her would not be holy). Today, I was hoping that she not share her side or opinion with me, regardless of what it might be, because if the layer of onion was pulled back far enough to reveal ugly thoughts about my skin color, the skin color of which my child has and this woman is one of her teachers….and that is where I caught the thought.
Praise God, I was able to overcome this thought train of destruction with Philippians 4:8-9. After that, I had another open heart talk with Jesus and I told Him all about my hatred for injustice, any injustice. It was then I was reminded that injustice happens everywhere and, unfortunately, all the time.
“Injustice anywhere affects everyone” – said someone but I don’t remember who so I can’t give them credit.
Was it unjust for Nero to throw Christians in the arena with lions? Yes. Was it unjust for Jews to be murdered when Hitler had power? Yes. Was American Slavery unjust? Yes. Is human trafficking unjust? Yes. Was it unjust for Filipinos to be discriminated against? Yes.
Injustice is rampant. The amount of press a particular unjust act gets is the only reason we are made aware of unjust acts that we are not personally involved in.
Once I refocused on Christ, only then could I find peace in the midst of this wave of emotions. I thought about all the injustice that has occurred and still occurs. Injustice isn’t new but it is just as horrendous.
The entire book of 1 Peter is written to “pilgrims of the Dispersion” aka Jews who left Jerusalem due to the persecution they experienced because they followed the Way (Acts 9:2). Peter divinely inscribed how Christians are to live amidst all of the unjust things that were happening around them and to them.
It is no different from now. Now is just as tragic as ANYTHING that has happened before. That statement is not to minimize or trivialize any unjust act that has occurred at any time. It is, however, a statement of fact that sin is rampant and will not let up until Christ returns.
Speaking of return, once I mediated on God and His word, my nerve endings are not waiting for a reason to go off. Now that I am refocused on Christ, I just remembered. His birthday is coming up!