Since I wrote the previous article on Healthy Conversations on race, I’ve found more resources that are so helpful for understanding racism, it’s historical roots, and the attitudes that allow racism to continue. I’ll be honest, these resources have helped me understand the struggles of the modern African-American community, and it’s given me a greater sense of compassion for my friends who are a part of the majority culture. My eyes have been opened to the racism that still exists today. There have been some tears shed. Like many of you, I believed the lie that the schools fed me. I thought the civil rights movement got rid of most legal racism. I knew it didn’t stop people from being racist, but I didn’t realize that racism still existed in legal forms, but in disguise.Continue Reading
This is a creative writing that was originally written in 2009. At the time I was struggling with how the mainstream evangelical church treats those who are not apart of the dominant culture. To be honest, I was weary of being taught that we must live for others, and yet also hearing that we must cater to the majority. My family and I have attended a large predominantly white church for over 16 years, and we missed the soul-stirring worship of a black church. More than that, we were weary of always having to be the one to sacrifice in order to make others more comfortable. Of course, we could always go back to a black church, but that would simply perpetuate the problem. Churches are still very segregated. I believe God has much more for us than segregated churches.
My hope in republishing this writing is to give you a small window into our world.
I was recently listening to a podcast called Around the Table. They discussed an interesting question.
What are you willing to struggle for?
I thought it was an interesting question because I believe it reveals alot about what’s in our hearts. It also reveals the truth about what we really value verses what we say we value.
Because it is a natural human response to avoid pain and hardship, when one chooses the path that brings pain–especially when there is an easier alternative, it reveals alot. No one chooses pain, unless it results in some great motivation or reward.
Jesus endured the cross, scorning its shame, because of the joy to come.
The writer of Hebrews teaches that we should not despise discipline because the pain of discipline will produce righteousness and peace if will cooperate with the training process. James teaches that we should consider it a joy when we endure all kinds of hardship because of the lasting good it produces in us.
Lasting Joy, and peace are things worth suffering for.
Have we ever considered that our standards for beauty and health could be wrong? What if they aren’t realistic? What if the reason they require so much time, attention and energy is because, our expectations are so high?
In the past, and in other cultures what has been considered healthy? What has been considered beautiful? Has that changed over the years? Does it change from culture to culture?
Does this obsession with health and beauty come from God, or is it a scheme by the enemy to keep us self-focused? As we keep our minds cluttered with thoughts of weight, BMIs, bikini-ready bodies, superfoods, calories, and so forth, do we miss out on connecting with God and people. Ultimately, we miss out on the “life” we’re really craving.
Do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life MORE than food and body MORE important that clothes? For pagans frun after these things and your Heavenly Father knows you need them. But seek first the kingdom and His righteousness, and ALL these things will be given to you as well. Matthew 6:25,32-33
Could this also be said of how our body looks and our obsession with losing weight and being healthy? Continue Reading