I don’t have all the answers.
I like to have answers. I know we all do. But I am RELENTLESS until I find the answer or solution to a question or problem. And nothing frustrates me more than when I don’t have an answer after I’ve exhausted all my brain power and Google searches without success
I often find myself frustrated and annoyed in the middle of Aisle 8 at Walmart because OUT OF NOWHERE, without warning, they decide to rearrange the whole ding-dang store! A simple trip for some toilet paper, beef jerky and Nestle cookie dough has now turned into an hour long scavenger hunt filled with blood sweat and tears. I just don’t know where I am, no one can tell me what to do and I have literally no idea where to go from here! Ugh…
I now find myself in such a “WalMart” conundrum whilst reading about and listening to news about Charlottesville, VA. If you don’t know whats going on in Charlottesville, please take time to Google.
In a nutshell, White Nationalists are rallying in what they are calling a “pro-white” demonstration due to confederate symbols being removed from VA.
Monzi Def.- White Nationalist: White people who hate anything with a pigment. Ku Klux Klan (KKK), Neo-nazis, etc.
Known for saying: We don’t talk to *insert non-white race* and they don’t talk to us. Let us stew in our juices.
Yes, it’s 2017.
Yes, racism still exists.
Yes, I can’t even.
Ruffled Feathers…the struggle.
What is happening in Charlottesville is IN-SANE. Part of me is enraged. Another part terrified and others parts flabbergasted. What really has ruffled my feathers is the fact that people around me are so inconsistent- its baffling! I’m at a loss and so disappointed in many people for not seeing the injustices and not speaking up about it!
And here I am again.
Annoyed and frustrated because I don’t know how to navigate these situations as a Christian, Black woman in America. This is a struggle I’ve been dealing with for many years. How do I express myself in a predominantly white community where a good chunk of the people occupying it choose not to care , think its downright sinful to talk about racial injustice or don’t want to mess up their tidy, little, perfect world by trying to understand the messiness that is mine.
I don’t know how I’m supposed to feel or what I’m supposed to do and I hate it! My life is a rearranged Walmart and I don’t where I am, no one can tell me what to do and I have no idea where to go from here.
Passive or Aggressive?
What do I do? How do I live? Right now I am shaking with rage and want to write on every one of my Facebook friends walls: YOU SEE WHAT HAPPENS WHEN YOU VOTE FOR DONALD TRUMP. ((I know this is NOT the answer and DT isn’t fully the cause of this. But I’m just being honest. We all love being in “I told you so” moments, even if its not right… am I right?!))
However, when I think things like that… my heart says: Don’t fuel fire. Too aggressive. And then I think… just ignore it. ((I also know this is NOT the answer and for certain things we cannot sit back and be silent.)) When I think things like this, my brain says: Passivity doesn’t bring peace… it promotes injustice. Great.
So what does a Christian Black woman do in these moments of crazy?
Don’t Cry Out Loud.
Cry. That’s what I did…or am doing. (I can’t tell what my tear ducts are trying to do.) I will say, it wasn’t the first thing I did. I have to admit I acted out of emotion tweeted some things… ((Social Media will be the death of me. )) However, just because I felt a certain way doesn’t mean I was right in my actions. Feelings are fleeting and our hearts and brains make poor choices. Ultimately, our first go to should be Jesus and at my wit’s end, I finally cried and cried out to Him. Just to be as transparent as possible: Here is a little insight into our conversation:
“Why is this happening?”
“Why are people idiots?”
“Why can’t I have a solid answer on how to handle this?”
“Why can’t I just spout out the mouth and not care like everyone else”
“Why are people of color hated SO. MUCH?”
“Why did I have to witness Philando Castile being shot to death on my Facebook?”
“Why did his precious step daughter have to witness his death in person?”
“WHY IS IT ALWAYS PEOPLE OF COLOR?!”
“Why can’t some white people see the blatant inconsistency?!”
“Why doesn’t the church care?”
“Why doesn’t MY church care?”
“Why do my friends think I’m wrong for talking about this?”
“Why do I get judged on caring about people like me?”
“Why do I feel silenced”
“How can people not see the injustices happening?”
“How can anyone just ignore this?!”
“Do people even care about ANYTHING?”
While I didn’t get a direct answer to these things, I did get a revelation from my cries. In all of the questions I asked, God answered one that I didn’t even realize:
“I care.” He said.
If there’s anyone who cares fully about injustice, the vulnerable, or other craziness that stem from sin, ITS GOD! He is hurting for our nation and He, too, is devastated at the way racial and cultural divides are tearing His people apart. But He doesn’t want me to smack people or pretend I’m not effected either. He wants me to go to Him and Him alone. You see, seeing injustices like this breaks a person.
Sin breaks a person.
And if you don’t allow Jesus to save, heal, and restore you from the death sin brings, your heart will become hardened and you will become angry, hateful and bitter. We all need to bring all of our various emotions and feelings to His feet and cry out before Him. He won’t necessarily remove us or change how it effects us… but He will comfort and protect us, teaching us how to face this broken world dead on…His way!
I’ve said it time and time again. The LORD is a loving and intentional God. A loving and intentional God would not ignore racial or any other injustices, but be deliberate in bringing love and life into a situation of hate and death. We are His hands and His feet and His desire is to guide His people in just how to navigate through every area to bring honor and glory to Himself in the process.
Example? …Woman at the well.
The Bible could have just said “There was a woman at the well who Jesus talked to…” But no. The Bible says a SAMARITAN woman came to the well.
Monzi Def- Samaritan: Jews hated the Samaritans and vica versa. One of the longest standing hatreds of our time.
Known for saying: We don’t talk to Jews and they don’t talk to us. Let us stew in our juices!
Here you have Jewish, Jesus– Messiah, Savior King, Son of God– talking to, getting real with and sharing the good news to a SAMARITAN WOMAN!? Why? Jesus cared about specifically restoring the racial divides. Jesus did not shy away from the cultural taboos of His day. If something wasn’t pleasing to the Father, no matter how accepted it was by the people around Him, He confronted it for everyone to see! He did not ignore specific issues, nor did He get up on a platform demonizing people. He restored and challenged the culture around Him in the intentional, orchestrated places the Father placed Him.
Okay, what does this all mean?!
Sorry… rabbit trails! At the end of the day, I have a God, a Father, a Friend, a Savior who cares about the things I care about and wants to change the effects of sin in this world. Jesus broke the chains and effects of sin and death when He shed His blood on the cross and restored our brokenness. Now He wants to use us, His church, His people, to bring that truth and restoration to the world around us.
Being a Christian doesn’t mean I can’t be upset about what is going on. Being Black doesn’t give me permission to ridicule and demonize white people in my tweets. I know, it’s hard not to react out of anger and it’s doubly hard to use self control when others don’t. But the fact of the matter is… in moments of crazy, such as the events in Charlottesville, two things:
- I have to- nay, I NEEEEED to be turning to God. Jesus knows the toll sin takes on the human race and He is the ONLY one Who can hold us together. If I don’t allow Him to restore, challenge and transform me… I will become just as hateful as the people I’m upset with.
- God is the answer. He straight, up created the answers! Unlike WalMart, I don’t need to know where I am. I don’t need another person to tell me what to do. And let’s be honest… I will never know where I’m going. That may sound scary, but it’s an AMAZING place to be because it forces me to take my cues from the Lord so HE can use me as He planned to restore and challenge the culture in the intentional, orchestrated places the Father has placed me. Only under His authority, can true change happen.
So, in conclusion…
I do have answers, I guess. It’s not to meet hate with hate or to pretend like I’m not upset with how broken our world is. It’s not to Facebook, tweet or snap my opinions ((no matter how good it may make me feel!)) The answer is to go to God and let Him be my Lord in every situation. He is my comfort and my peace. He is my shoulder to cry on when I just don’t get it. He is my refuge and ever present help. But best of all, He is my intentional Father who wants to guide me in how to handle myself in times like these in a holy and biblical way… ALL for His glory.
While the things like Charlottesville are shocking and horrible, I can rest knowing that God knows and He is ready to restore His people and lead them into challenging the terrible injustices of our day…just like Jesus did! Our lives are about to be rearranged a lot more than Walmart… but don’t stand in Aisle 8 being frustrated. Let God be your guide.
Until next time,
“Many of the Samaritans from that town believed
in him because of the woman’s testimony,
“He told me everything I ever did.”
So when the Samaritans came to him, t
hey urged him to stay with them, and he stayed two days.
And because of his words many more became believers.
They said to the woman,
“We no longer believe just because of what you said;
now we have heard for ourselves,
and we know that this man really is the Savior of the world.”
~John 4: 39-42