If you live in Minnesota like I do, Spring is a wonderful time of year. The snow is gone, the grass and the leaves are almost here, and our minds are filled with all of the wonderful ways we are going to spend our weekends this summer. Yet why is it that I woke up today with a heavy heart? Maybe it is because once again, the politics of the world is going to drastically effect those summer nights for a second year in a row.
The media has made it clear that we are in a season where those who choose to do evil are treated as victims while those who seek to do good are treated as villains. And not just the media, more and more companies are taking political sides as “being woke” is now the latest corporate trend in marketing. I was literally shocked to see companies like Ben and Jerry’s make such bold and far-reaching statements suggesting that people who are killed while resisting arrest are now considered murdered solely because of the color of their skin.
And then it hit me. The scriptures have told us about times like this; times of great evil. The prophet Isaiah lived during one of these times. He wrote, 20 Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter! … 23 Which justify the wicked for reward, and take away the righteousness of the righteous from him! Isaiah 5:20,23
It is hard to picture that a world can be so blinded by darkness that it glorifies those who loot and rob while they attack those who strive to serve and protect others. It baffles me that people claiming to be helping the poor like the leaders of BLM are lifted up as they boldly make lavish personal purchases with those funds raised. And it angers me that a political system can so manipulate and control minority groups in such a way to keep those groups oppressed yet use them as political pawns to do their bidding.
The new woke Minnesota is one where racism once again takes front and center stage. And that means that all Minnesotans will be limited in how much they can really enjoy their summer. For the days of large concerts, professional sports, taking trips downtown, or even enjoying our summer nights during state issued curfews seem to be something that will have to wait at least another year.
And what do we think all of this propaganda will do to our state and country? I hear more and more children speaking against other races than I ever have before. I see them building walls around their hearts as they are filled with fear and mistrust. Being woke is creating racism, and the damage being done for political gain this year may have horrific effects in the years to come as America once again has to find friends they can trust and have their backs. Sadly, many of those friends will share the same color of skin because of this new fear. Racism is learned, and our country is teaching us all at a college level.
As Christians, we need to remember that we gave up our nationality and our race when we made the decision to become children of God. As He is our Father and Christ our Husband, it matters not what color or gender we claim to be for we gave it all up to be what He wants us to be. Paul does a great job to show that those who are filled with the Spirit of God no longer need to concern themselves with racism in their hearts, for those in Christ surrender their worldly identity to take on His identity of holiness. It matters not who a person is or what flag their ancestors flew generations before. We are called to love all; even those who do not deserve it. He writes, 27 For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ. 28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus. Gal. 3:27-28
There is a lot of propaganda trying to convince the world that we need to put up walls and fight against each other because of race, color, and religious convictions. Yet as Christians we need to remember that we are called to walk a different path. We are called to love. We are called to turn the other cheek and pray for those who persecute us. And yes, in these evil times, those who seek to do good will be made out to be the villain, but that is because of the brokenness of the world and therefore we should not be shocked by it.
I do hope that we will find some time to enjoy the beautiful creation that the Lord will be putting on display for us this summer in Minnesota. And I do pray that we can have faith enough to allow God to carry the heavy burdens of this world in order that we can find rest and peace with Him. It is Ok to shake our heads in disbelief as we see how the brokenness of the world views love, but let it not strip us of our hope and joy as Christ leads us to still waters as we walk through the valley of the shadow of death.