As a young African American, I am appalled by the insensitivity for human life. George Floyd was a man who lost his life because the color of his skin was dark. What can we as black people do when the skin we’re in is a weapon that people fear? It’s the year 2020 for crying out loud! How did we get catapulted back into the 60’s? The truth is, though, that no one hit the rewind button, but in the words of Will Smith, “Racism isn’t getting worse, it’s getting filmed.”
As believers, what should our stance be and what actions can we take? Are we allowed to be angry, too?
Actually, we should be outraged at the injustices taking place today and angry at those that are past. We should take our righteous indignation to energize and propel us to do something good.
Here are 3 things what we can do to stand for black lives as Christian women:
As believers in Jesus Christ, empathy and prayer should be our first response. Praying to the God who knows all and is in total control. We can trust Him and must lean on Him during times like these.
Racism does not surprise God. It’s okay to ask God, “Why? Why is this happening?”
In the bible, this is called lamenting. The definition of lamenting is to ‘express regret or disappointment over something considered unsatisfactory, unreasonable, or unfair.’ God wants us to come to Him about these things. He is concerned about everything that concerns us. It is good to let Him in on the things stirring in our hearts.
Still, one thing we should not do is blame God. He is a good God and rejoices in giving us good gifts. However, we live in a fallen world where God has given all of us the gift of free will. Some of us use that free will for good and some for evil.
My pastor reminded our church of something this past Sunday. He reminded us that just like coldness exists because there is an absence of heat and darkness exists because of an absence of light, evil exists because there is an absence of God.
God is not present in the hearts of murderers and those who do evil. We should pray for those who do evil because they are lost and deceived by the adversary. We should pray that God send witnesses their way to speak to them about the good news of Jesus Christ. God’s desire is that none would perish, but all be saved.
2. STAND FOR JUSTICE
I’ve seen several social media posts that have said if you remain silent, then you are complicit. I agree with this statement. If people like Martin Luther King Jr. and Rosa Parks remained silent, then the success we have accomplished as black people would have never occurred.
I believe that God raises up certain people of influence to speak on other’s behalf, but I do think that we all have a part to play. The fact of the matter is you don’t have to be a person of influence to do it. We all have a platform and it’s called social media.
Those with white privilege can use their voice to stand up for the minority.
Those with businesses can make a statement against racism.
We can sign petitions, donate for the cause, or participate in peaceful protests.
We can all take a stand.
The black community is asking you to stand for justice, whoever or wherever you are.
3. GET EDUCATED
Let’s educate ourselves! In 2020, there is no excuse—google it.
The murder of George Floyd by Derek Chauvin didn’t just start in the street that day. There had already been 12 police brutality complaints against him, all listed as “closed”, “non-public”, and “no discipline”.
In 2008 he shot an unarmed black 21-year-old man and in 2011 he was put on leave for an inappropriate police shooting of an Alaskan Native American. So, how in the world did this man still have a job? I guess it took his actions being filmed on camera to finally terminate him, which is absolutely ridiculous. My first thought is who was in charge? Who had the authority to end this man’s career before he killed someone? And what can we do to change all this? The answer: We live in America and this is a democracy!
Our voice can be heard through our INFORMED vote. Notice the word informed in all caps. Every year on election days, there are so many people who tell us, “Go vote to make a difference!” But how does our vote make a difference if we’re just hitting random buttons in the voting booth? We know nothing about the candidate’s policies or listed amendments, but vote for them only because we see their billboards driving home, or because our parents told us who to vote for, or because they have a nice name. (Because nice names make great politicians, right? Wrong.)
The people we vote into office are the ones helping to make the big decisions in the world, like firing officers with 12 police brutality complaints. So, before we vote just to post our “I voted” sticker on Facebook and Instagram, let’s get informed about those people who are on the ballet. Find out what policies they stand for and what laws they voted against. I believe that is the next huge step we can take in changing the injustices we are experiencing today.
Also, as an educator myself, I desire to see more faces like mine in places of authority and influence, like owning our own businesses, becoming the leaders of new innovations, or fighting for new reforms in legislation.
There are some of us out there, but we’re still underrepresented. My prayer is that God put a strong desire in this next generation of young black people (or anyone who is for the advancement of our people) to become educators, prolific thinkers, lawyers, prosecutors, judges, governors, house representatives, police officers, and police chiefs just to name a few.
Black Lives Matter and so does your voice. Let’s use prayer, our influence, and education to make a difference. Let’s stand for Jesus AND Justice.