Essay #6. The Color of God’s Children
Every evening the nightly news tells America about another major concern. Our politicians are constantly, in their not so secret language, telling Americans how the demographics of America is changing. This is designed to add fear to the lives of people who think people of color are going to steal what rightfully belongs to White people. One of the biggest group of people who live in this fear, are people in the church. Just for the record, this country is more than the demographics of the people who live in it. If we did America correctly, we would feel a spirit of togetherness. Instead, people outside the church, look at people in the church and see no love. It is said that more people in America believe in God, than those who don’t. So, if our country is mostly made up of people who believe in God, why aren’t we a country showing each other the love of God? It can’t be because we don’t know the will of God is for us to love our neighbor as we love ourselves. If you have been a Christian for more than twenty minutes you should know and recognize Chapter 5 of Matthew, ‘The Sermon on the Mount’. It tells us to be peacemakers and that we should hunger for righteousness and we’re not to hide our light under bushel. So, if it isn’t because we don’t understand the love and the will of God, what’s the problem? Could it be that we don’t truly understand the importance of love? Could it be, because of our lack of understanding God’s true love for us and the love He demands we have for each other, we have become more apathetic than apologetic? Are people in church starting to look like people in hate groups?
Do you realize that every unjust, violent, hateful and greedy situation perpetrated in this country ultimately starts with the lack of love and caring? Deep beneath the soil within the roots of the evil doers, there is a search for their promise of riches. We wrongly claim that money is the root of all evil. That’s not what the Bible says. The Bible states in 1 Timothy 6:10, “For the love of money is the root of all evil; which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.” Here’s an example how deadly the love of money can be. Many people think that the color of a man’s skin in this country caused slavery and separation. The root of slavery in this country was about the greed for money. American’s skin color hatred was invented later to justify the evils perpetrated by those who loved money more than people. In fact, many Christians partook and benefited in America’s slavery systems. They too justified it by declaring Africans less than human. Today this same love of money continues to cause a human skin color separation. Notice that I didn’t used the word “race”. That’s because I believe there is only one “race”. It’s called the “Human Race”, made by God.
In Genesis 4:9 God asks Cain about the whereabouts of his brother Abel. Cain answers, “Am I my brother’s keeper?” The answer to that age-old question is, who is my brother? The answer is, we are all brothers and sisters in Christ. The following question deserves to be asked and answered. What is the number one problem in society today? Evangelist Billy Graham said in the Foreword of “Breaking-Down Walls” by Raleigh Washington and Glen Kehrein, “Few issues trouble our world as persistently as the conflict between different races and backgrounds.” He goes on to say, “Of all people, Christians should be concerned about racial strife. And yet all too often, we must confess, we have been content to stand on the sidelines and let others take the lead in racial reconciliation. At times we have even been satisfied with the status quo.” To be honest I trust very few White men, but I trusted Billy Graham. Over the years the man has proven that his walk and his talk live in the same body. That doesn’t mean he is perfect. He has had to apologize for a stupid comment or two in his life. Just for the record, I don’t trust very many Black, Yellow, Red or Brown men either.
Matthew 19:19 says, “Honour thy father and thy mother and thou shall love thy neighbor as thyself.” When asked about which is the greatest commandment in the law Jesus answered in Matthew 22:39, “And the second (commandment) is like unto it. Thou shall love thy neighbor as thyself.” So, why are so many Christians choosing to love only those who look like they look; talk like they talk and live in their neighborhoods?
Attending church, praying a lot, and at the same time doing very little about social problems in America, has become an American Christian ritual. The ritualistic expression of apathy works as an enemy to the work of Christ, and it’s a springboard to allowing racism to exist. It is one of the main reasons why our society is in the shape it is in. Sadly, this Christian apathy causes a veil to drape over the true love of Christ; hiding us from a world torn apart. We need Him dearly. Shamefully, too much of this Christian apathy is being taught by preach-so-they’ll-come-back-next week, type pastors and preachers. It’s impossible for an apathetically filled Christian society to do the work Christ appointed us to do, which is to love. While racism isn’t hate, it is perpetrated because of a lack of love. This lack of love makes racism a Christian and church issue!
The question must be asked: Can God Bless America? If we understood the true nature of God, this question becomes very interesting. God is the God of the universe. This makes God the Father of us all. So, we are all ‘Children of God’. Did not our Father, God, send his Son to die for all His children? Aren’t brown, yellow and black skinned people brought here as slaves, also children of God? Aren’t the red skinned people who lived and hunted in this land, long before the Mayflower arrived, children of God? Aren’t all the people with brown skin and yellow skin who were forced to work on the railroads, children of God? Don’t you think the Father of all these people is upset that His children of color are not being treated equal by His White children? Don’t you think God would be equally upset to see that His Christian family is just as hateful and uncaring as many of those who have not accepted His love? Therefore, I ask again, can God bless America?
Those old enough to remember the tragic events of September 11, 2001, remember how it left us all in shock. Remember how Americans pulled together? I also remember how shocked I was, regarding how quickly our racial attitudes got back to normal. Just for the record, the normal I’m talking about has never truly been right in America. The only people who have gained anything from this tragic event are the people who make American flags.
Christians in America have never shown the world the power of God’s love. What would happen if Christians showed the world that they understood the mistakes we’ve made and are ready to correct them? What if Christians unify and become strong enough to help society rid this country of racism and hate? There’s a song that says, “With God as our Father, brothers all are we. Let me walk with my brother in perfect harmony. Let peace begin with me. Let this be the moment now. With every breath I take. Let this be my solemn vow. To take each moment and live each moment in peace eternally, let there be peace on earth and let it begin with me.” Taking this one action will make this country a stronger place for everyone regardless of skin color.
God must be sick and tired of the church praying for answers He has already given. When will the church do love, rather than just pray about it? When will the church learn to reconcile with people and instead of condemning people? When will the church learn that empathy creates compassion and compassion creates love? When will the church learn love changes people? Love is a tool which can help make America the land of milk, honey and equality.
The other night on television I watched as hateful people taught their children to hate people of color and Jews. At the same time, they worshiped God. Can the One True God bless that? 1 John 4: 20-21 says, “If any man say, I love God and hate his brother, he is a liar: for he that loves not his brother whom he has seen, how can he love God whom he has not seen? And this commandment have we from Him, that he who loves God love his brother also.”
A true follower of God or a true patriot cannot be a racist person. Just as a person who follows God’s word is different than someone who just prays, so is the difference between a racist, a non-racist and an anti-racist.