During this pandemic, I have become emotionally exhausted. The unending stories of injustice, police brutality, ineffective government, and the lack of empathy, have been overwhelming. I never watch the news because we are fed bad news over and over again. It is very depressing. As a woman of color and a mother of 2 African American sons, I am always concerned about their well-being. My heart gets heavy every time a mother loses her child to violence. Honestly, I haven’t watched the video of George Floyd losing his life. I can’t. Social media doesn’t make it any better. While scrolling my timeline, I am repeatedly seeing the negativity that shrouds us as a country. When will it end? What do we as people of faith do? How can we navigate such murky waters? During prayer, the Lord whispered in my spirit two words,” Pack Light”. What does it mean to pack light? How is it possible when we are exposed to so much that is unlike God?
1 Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us,
2 Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.
In Hebrews 12:1-2, Paul states that we must “lay aside every weight and the sin that so easily besets us”. What negative mindsets have we allowed to creep in during this time of chaos? What negative words have allowed to seep out our mouths in response to what we see happening around us? Have we spewed words of hatred and fear from our mouths? Are we being peacemakers or are we allowing our political views to divide us as the Body of Christ? I believe we are all guilty to some extent. We aren’t called to be Republican or Democrat. We are called to the body of Christ and the sons/daughters of God. We have a responsibility to let our lights shine amid darkness so that others will come to know the Father. Honestly, I have found myself asking, “Where is the church?” When the NBA is more outspoken about social injustice than the church, there is a problem. Many of us are so busy trying to defend worldly principles and beliefs that we have put the gospel on the back burner.
God is calling us to His truths. Some of us are so blinded by our agendas and ideals that we have willingly turned a deaf ear to the cries of those around us. What are we doing? We need to search our hearts. Jesus came to set the captive free. He came to be the voice of the oppressed and poor. His identify was not political. His identity was defined by His holiness and found in God the Father. Now is the time for us to stand up for what is right, not in the eyes of man but what’s right in the eyes of God. If we fail to do so, then their blood will be on our hands.
Again, I don’t have all of the answers. I have felt helpless as a believer too. However, verse 2 tells us to “look to Jesus who is the author and finisher of our faith”. First, we must ask God to search our hearts. If there is anything in them that is not like Him, we need to repent and ask God to remove it. Secondly, we need to seek the Lord in prayer like never before. We need to ask God to give us wisdom on what we can do to make things better. Once He shows us, we must obey. Third, I believe that He will deliver us and heal us if we are willing and obedient. This is not a skin or political problem. It is a SIN problem. Those of us who say we know the Lord should know that what we are seeing is not of God and know that He is not pleased.
We can no longer hide in the shadows. We have to rise and be who God has called us to be. If we are intercessors, we should be praying. If we are preachers, we should be preaching. If we are teachers of the word, we should be teaching. I will be the first to admit that I have not been doing what I need to do. I have allowed the issues of life to distract me from my spiritual responsibilities. However, I know that God is calling all of us to a greater level of accountability and action.
Beloved, let us pray for one another:
Father, we thank you for who you are. You are sovereign and do all things well. We thank you for your grace and mercy. We come to you with repentant hearts. Forgive us for not being who you have called us to be. Forgive us for our selfish ambitions and agendas. Forgive us for not seeing our brothers and sisters as you see them. In you, there is neither Jew nor Gentile. You came that ALL mean might be saved. Help us to love ALL men as you love them. Lord, show us the weights to aside in our lives and reveal the sin that beset us. Open the eyes of our hearts so we can see you and your ways. Father, heal our nation and let it start with us. These things we ask in your son, Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.
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