Like many people I am disturbed, but not surprised by what is happening in Missouri. Growing up in Houston, Texas I understood that there were certain rules that I had to follow when engaging the police.
The rules applied to me, a poor African-American adolescent male, but they did not apply to some of my fair-skinned friends. Their perception of the police was quite different. Don’t get me wrong, I knew and respected many police officers. I even admired them, but I also had a healthy fear of them. If every confronted by the police I had a game plan: say yes sir/ma’am; don’t move; and if I had to move clearly communicate each action to avoid two in the head.
What is happening in Ferguson, Missouri is a tragic: multiple killings of young black males, lootings, and martial law. The other tragedy is what brings situations like this to pass. It is not just about race and skin color, but it is about whom and what influences our children.
Not to discount the damning effects of chattel slavery, but we (particularly in the African-American culture) have glorified the gangsta hip-hop life style. Fathers are absent from our homes, and some churches are more interested in being mega than being relevant. We no longer understand what is real and what our true mission is on this earth.
You can’t tell the difference between some pastors and the latest reality TV stars, e.g. Preachers of LA.
2 Think about the things of heaven, not the things of earth. 3 For you died to this life, and your real life is hidden with Christ in God. 4 And when Christ, who is your life, is revealed to the whole world, you will share in all his glory. (Colossians 3:2-5)
Colossians 3 gives us some insight of what “keeping it real,” truly means. If we, starting in our own homes, learn how to emphasize the love of Christ, this world would be a much better place. Instead of illustrating violence for our children we should demonstrate grace, mercy, and forgiveness.
In fact many people of all races are murdered daily. The stories don’t always make the news, but these deaths are no less important. The gospel of Jesus, not pop-culture should be preeminent in our lives. Instead of giving our time, talent, and treasure to AAU, we should spend more time with J-E-S-U-S.
Churches need to minister to entire familes and get the entire community engaged in ministry to our youth and young adults.
Instead of raising our hands in protest I pray we can raise our hands in unity. I pray we can raise our hands to celebrate the achievements of our children.
I pray we can raise our hands to lift up a fellow brother or sister in need and I pray we can lift our hands in worship to God.