∼The Middle of the Garden∼

My experiences from walking and talking with Jesus in the middle of life's garden…a blog by Janet Williams

Revelation 14:6 “Then I saw another angel flying in midair, with an eternal Gospel (good news) to tell to the inhabitants of the earth, to every race and tribe and language and people.” AMP

As a Christian I am always trying to take social issues of concern and place them somewhere in the bible. I am looking for some kind of frame of reference or some kind of analogy to Jesus’ life and teachings to see the issue at hand through His eyes.

So, when the phrase, “Black Lives Matter” became popular, I began asking Jesus what He thought of it. (I believe that the Holy Spirit Who dwells within me is the same Spirit that raised Jesus from the dead. So, through the Holy Spirit God can lead my eyes to scriptures that apply and give me His understanding of how they fit.)

I must admit that at first, in my natural human mind, I thought that the phrase “Black Lives Matter” was a bit hypocritical. My mind went to the topic of abortion. I couldn’t help but thinking that if black lives mattered so much as to bring about a national outcry then where was that outcry over black women getting abortions? Don’t these black lives matter too?

Then, my natural, human, mind went to the amount of black children in foster care or are being raised by a single parent or grandparent. They are suffering injustice on a daily basis. Don’t their black lives matter? How can anyone stand up in protest over George Floyd when they’ve not been a daily presence in their own children’s lives?

But, then I allowed my natural mind to take a rest and I felt out the situation with my heart. I looked at the injustice of what is happening with alarming regularity to the black people of America. It is sad that any child has to have a parent coach them through a traffic stop or encounter with the police for fear of their child’s life. That should never have to happen. I know what it is like to feel an injustice has occurred in my life. I do not want to focus in on what I may have done wrong at the time it occurred and I never felt I should have to weigh out wether or not I was perfect in that situation. An injustice stings and it keeps stinging. It set my emotions on fire and all I could think of was getting retribution. It took everything within me to not get revenge. I struggled with off and on for several years. I have forgiven them a thousand times and yet the anger will suddenly well up within me and I am back at square one.

I once heard a quote from Nietzsche who said something like, “Beware, lest in fighting the dragon you become the dragon.” In other words, I needed to keep in mind that I could easily become the one who hoists an injustice onto another after having cried out that an unfair thing was hoisted onto me. It’s like a child who was abused who then grows up and becomes an abuser of children themselves. In suffering abuse through injustice do I cause others to suffer abuse through my actions of injustice?

But, this is what is happening with the protests. Some of those who are protesting the abuses of the police are now hoisting abuse onto the owners of stores. Some are stealing and feeling justified in doing so. Some appear to feel entitled to take whatever they want and do whatever they want.  Some protesters are dragging people out of their cars and beating them. So, the cycle of abuse continues. Some who feel the injustice of George Floyd’s cruel death are now hoisting violence and abuse onto innocent store owners and people driving by. This doesn’t help the cause of “black lives matter”. It doesn’t convince those who are outsiders looking into the cause to get on board and become part of the cause. In fact, it makes reasonable people take a step back because they aren’t interested in fighting a war that is impure in its integrity and motives.

Last night was the funeral of Captain David Dorn. He was a 77 year old retired police officer in St. Louis who was murdered by protesters. I have to ask myself, why is it that George Floyd’s death was an outrage and an injustice of greater proportions than David Dorn’s? Death is death. Murder is murder. Injustice is injustice. The apparent reason is that David Dorn was a black man who was murdered by black men. So, where was the outcry for him? Where were the protesters and the “black lives matter” signs?  How is it that black lives matter when it is white on black crime or blue on black crime but not when it is black on black crime?

Somehow, the purity and the simpleness of the “black lives matter” movement has become lost. Putting a knee on someone’s neck should be outlawed. Treating a person of one race differently on an arrest or confrontation with police than another person of a differing race should be changed. But, when the protestors are acting in the same disregard for disrespecting others due to their race as the white police have to the black people then it sadly shows that human nature is such that we have the desire for OTHERS to be better people but we fail to do so ourselves.

Paul wrote about this in his letter to the Romans. Romans 7:15 (NIV) says, “I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do.” This is the very part of our human nature that no one (except Jesus) has ever conquered. Even this great man of the faith, Paul,  could not overcome this natural human flaw. 

And this is why that EVERYTHING we do has to be Jesus-centered and God ordained. It won’t work if the work comes from human motivation. It won’t work if it is one person or a group of people trying to make a lasting effectual change in another group but the work isn’t through Jesus. It won’t work because human motivation is always flawed. It always has hidden agendas that are not Christ-centered. Human nature is always self serving. It holds just enough truth to make it sound valid but it holds just enough ego to make the cause doomed from the start. It will only work when we grasp that God made us all colors to live together to make up one world.

The way I see it is that this isn’t just a white policeman problem. This is an everybody problem. And the only solution to an everybody problem is the One Who holds the power to change everybody….if they will only turn to Him, yield to Him and surrender their problem to Him.

 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.  For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” Matthew 11:28-30 (NIV)

The value of what Jesus has to offer is immense. Jesus implores us to lay our burdens down at His cross and leave it up to Him to make the changes we need.

I pray we may all find peace.




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