Reconciliation is a Responsibility

A wound, undealt with, in the proper conditions, will become infected and fester.  If tended to, but not delicately enough, the wound will not heal.  The problem will not be solved.

We see this in our inner lives, do we not?  We gloss over pain we have experienced, ignore the hurt, and move on.  But we do not tend the wound.

And so it festers.

Is it not clear, over the last several years, that the pains and wounds of racism and justice in our American society have not been properly tended to?  The anger and frustration and pain of those in Baltimore after Freddie Gray's death last year was hear around the world.  This horrible event threw a spotlight on deep injustices and decades of pain.

Yet, a significant number of white people I know dismissed these events as none of their concern.

I am not satisfied with that.  And the events of the last few weeks deepen that restlessness within me.  Any argument crying "isolated events" is washed away by the torrent of outcry against so many injustices over so many years.

Americans:  If we consider ourselves citizens of a nation based on the idea that all men are created equal, it is necessary to work at removing the barriers that keep the declared truth from being an active reality for our fellow citizens.

Christians: If we consider ourselves citizens of a Kingdom of a God who demands justice for the oppressed, who loves people of every tribe, tongue, and nation, and calls us to follow His lead, it's time to start removing the barriers that keep our fellow men from receiving that justice and love.

We are responsible.

There is very little I know.  I question if I have any authority at all to speak into this national racial divide as a white suburban male.  So I will do my best to listen, and point to the authority of my earthly citizenship and the higher authority of my eternal citizenship.

It is time to listen to one another.  To lay aside defenses and hear the stories of those who have been victims of structural and individual injustices.  To seek reconciliation.

This world is a mess, and we all have some responsibility to set it to rights.  Whether reaching out to your neighbor, leading a vastly influential non-profit, or something in between: own your part.

You are responsible.  Today, you can begin to end an injustice, in the hope that all injustice will end.

 North Baltimore, from above.  February 2014.  A city with much healing still to be done.

North Baltimore, from above.  February 2014.  A city with much healing still to be done.