Friday, September 23, 2016
I have a little story to share:
This summer I had sent white Luke and black Mik into the store to run an errand.
Luke was leading the way and they walked in the door where the ATM machine was being serviced. There was an armed guard and a armored truck in position and doing their job. Luke doesn't even notice. Mik takes a WIDE swing to NOT even be NEAR the situation.
They do their errand and get back in the car and Mik says to Luke: Dude!!! Don't ever walk by a situation like that when I am with you.
Luke responds: What are you even talking about?
Mik: No black man should walk by that kind of situation. Did you see the guy that was working on the ATM machine, and the guy guarding the area?
Luke: Oh brother!!! You are paranoid, nobody was even looking at you.
Mik: Shaking his head in discouragement and frustration......ok, whatever you think....
My head was spinning....Everyone was right, and everyone was wrong.
Luke - Doesn't have a racist bone in his body, but is also blind and deaf to what Mik sees and feels and experiences.
Mik - Doing what he is told and learned by living in this world in this time, in his skin:
Don't put yourself in a *sketchy* situation, don't ever give people ANY reason to question WHAT you are up to. NEVER be guilty, even by association. Never walk or dress or speak in a way that raises questions as to what you are doing.
Luke - Unwilling to listen or understand that Mik has to live with a different level of awareness in every situation calls him paranoid.
Mik - Impatient with Luke's "lack of understanding" for the reality that he lives with, Mik feels offended and unheard. He gets bummed and quiet vs. trying to help Luke understand. He just gives up and pushes the anxiety that he just felt near the ATM into a deeper place in his own heart, which only lends itself to more anxiety.
It opened up good conversation. Most people don't get the opportunity to dialogue on it as much as we do. It takes constant conversation and a lot of situations to help us all grow in understanding.
I have been Luke too many times....just because I'm not "racist" doesn't mean I don't have blind spots and an opinion that causes me to lack understanding.
We need to sit across that table from people speak and listen, not with the intention of telling "them" how it is and how it isn't, but with a heart that wants to feel, and a mind that wants to understand, and eyes that want to see and ears that want to hear.
Just because we aren't experiencing things, because of where we live or who we are or how we look, does not mean it is not happening. Part of all this information and communication going on in the world gives us a new level of responsibility.
There is a responsibility to seek the
There is a responsibility to seek the
TRUTH and respond in LOVE!
The only way to uncover the TRUTH, is to get face to face and get real relational. Share experiences. Look across the table and see and feel and hear.
The life and breath of the conversation, maybe even the spit that sprays or the tears that flow in the passion of it all, may blow out and water down the fire that rages.
We may never solve "the issue" or agree on actions, but I promise there will be
a seed planted - a compassion developed - because there is a FACE and a VOICE to the situation, not just a report and a riot.
This isn't a black and white skin issue, it is a red and bloody heart issue.
Jesus bled His pure RED blood to save all our SKINS!
We need to humble ourselves, lay it all out on the table and let Jesus do surgery on our hearts. Once our hearts are beating and flowing with the TRUTH, our eyes will open, our minds will be renewed, our ears will be tuned.
Once we RECEIVE THE TRUTH, THE RESPONSE WILL BE LOVE!