“Whoever claims to love God yet hates a brother or sister is a liar. For whoever does not love their brother and sister, whom they have seen, cannot love God, whom they have not seen.” – 1 John 4:20
A few years ago, I decided to do a 24 hours fast from all things news. So, you can imagine my shock when I turned on the TV only to be bombarded with images of evil, violence, hatred, and racism from the alt-right protests in Charlottesville, VA. Immediately, memories of the 1960s came to mind. And then in May of 2020 with the murder of Ahmaud Arbery and George Floyd setting off looting and violence amidst nationwide protests, we realize that systemic racism is still a huge part of our culture. What we’ve seen through these murders and the violent response has been so distressing.
Will this hatred, polarization, and division ever end? In earthly kingdoms, it will not. Only when Christ returns will there finally be true justice and peace for every race, tribe, tongue, and person. At long last, there will be harmony among mankind. What a glorious day that will be!
In the meantime, how do we as Christians respond to the blatant hatred and racism in our nation?
The first step is asking God to identify any pride and prejudices, big or small, in our own hearts. Why? Because racism is rooted in pride. And the danger with pride is just how quickly it can take root in our lives and without warning, turn into jealousy, bitterness, prejudice, and even racism.
The apostle John put it simply: “Whoever claims to love God yet hates a brother or sister is a liar.” In order to be a part of the solution, we need to ask that God align our hearts and minds with HIS. In a world filled with hate and anger, pray that God’s love will overcome the evil that is racism. Following and loving Jesus is the best place to start.