Wednesday, July 1, 2020

Wait - a BLACK Jesus?

A few years ago, my husband, Dale, and I were the only white couple in attendance at an otherwise all black wedding. In addition, we felt honored to be asked to sit in the “family section” - and did so. (I give Dale all the credit for being such a kind and wonderful friend/boss to the groom. Clearly, Dale meant a lot to this young man.)

At the wedding, I noticed the church had a large piece of artwork prominently displayed on the wall. It was a beautiful rendition of Jesus. 

A black Jesus. 

Yep. It was there. And - it was indeed beautiful. In fact, stunning.
Nope, not EVEN an issue. Actually, not even much thought. It just…was.  

Therefore, we didn’t feel the need to destroy this piece of art because it did not represent our own personal “version” or “interpretation” of Jesus’ skin color. We didn’t instigate a hostile dialog, protest, or riot.  

In fact, we rejoiced – as a BODY of Christ – ONE body – but, with different skin colors. Instead - together – we CELEBRATED the union of this sweet couple’s special day and their love for one another. 

Then what, I have to wonder - is the real contributing factor to today’s complete out-of-control chaos? Granted, horrific things have happened to people due to their (uncontrollable) skin color. No debate needed. But, demolishing a Jesus statue because it personifies Jesus as "white-ish?" Seriously? Just because it doesn't exhibit an artist’s rendition of a notorious all-encompassing skin color preference? It. is. still. Jesus. He's not just "my" Jesus, He exists for "all" people.

Interestingly, we have absolutely NO control over our skin color - and yet some want to destroy others – or at the least - an artist's personal illustration of Jesus’ skin color (whom by the way, specifically created OUR skin color). 

There’s a real news flash here - there is NOTHING - absolutely NOTHING we can do about our skin color. Yet, we fight about it, write about, and riot about it! 

So many battles - everywhere. However, surprisingly - there is one thing that we ALL have in common - a mutual enemy. That enemy – doesn’t care about skin color. Meh. And that enemy – doesn’t care about politics. Meh. Those things are just convenient tools. 

You don’t have to BELIEVE this. You don’t have to AGREE with this. You don’t have to LIKE this. But I can say without hesitation – without a doubt – we share a brutal enemy – and that enemy is Satan. 

He would do anything (and has tried) to keep us (U.S.?) from unity. His goal is – and will continue to be – a constant attempt to Destroy. Our. Lives.

However, there is only one way Satan can win. That’s if – IF – we let him win. If – IF – we fall into his traps - and continue to fight with - and against each other - and refuse to recognize the real problem.

He wins.

We lose.

So, when on earth are we going to stop FIGHTING about every new issue? Perhaps we’re not rioting, but safely behind computer screens I see very few people (and sometimes lifelong friends) who respond respectfully or with civility toward each other – let alone kindness when they disagree. Somehow, the fight and/or hatefully voicing opposing opinions has become more important than the relationship. I hear, “Well, he/she MADE me respond that way because they did…(whatever).” That’s nonsense. We are 100% responsible for our emotions and responses, not anybody else. So, let’s express our differences, while first and foremost - protecting our relationships!

Bottom line – please join me in praying like we’ve never prayed before. We are clearly in one of the biggest battles of our lives. A battle that we can win – if we recognize the real enemy (not our friends and neighbors) - or we’ll get ambushed. Satan can destroy the work of Jesus – when he can destroy the people of Jesus. 

Let’s celebrate our skin color differences and stay focused on what God’s word says - love one another. However, He didn’t clarify – unless it’s difficult.

Is there anyone you need to show love to – or ask forgiveness from – today? Don’t let Satan win! Take action – it’s something YOU can control!