Lives Matter

I don't often go public with posts that I think will offend or upset a particular segment of the population.  While I'd like to think I am being wise and loving, it is more likely that I am just chicken.

But today I will step out.  And what I am posting will probably offend every segment of the US population.

Here's what I want to say:


Our country continues to experience heartbreaking violence that appears to be targeted at certain populations:  black, LGBT, law enforcement, non-Muslims to name just a few of the more recent.  Each time, we recoil in horror and kneejerk to all sorts of options as solutions.

Let me quote Ben Watson here - after the tragedy in Missouri, he said it best: We don't have a SKIN problem, we have a SIN problem.

As long as we attempt to segregate the problem according to ethnicity or religion or sexual orientation, we cannot solve it.  As long as we condone actions as "reactions to hate or discrimination" we cannot stop the violence or the hate.  As long as we pin our hopes on things like politically correct speech or gun control, we will end up hopeless.  As long as we stick our heads in the sand and say "I'm not the problem - someone else is", we will make the problem worse.  As long as we distance ourselves from the issues, blame "the other side" and figure they will have to change first, change will never come.

 I am as angry as anybody that these things are happening. Against whoever is perpetrating them - radical Muslims, prejudiced police officers,  misguided young African-Americans, or abortionists.  ALL lives matter.  Every single one.  We Americans have come to a tragic place in our history where we value our own political views, or convenience or religion or preference more than a person's life.

And this is abhorrently, categorically wrong.


We cannot solve the problem by abdicating personal responsibility.
We cannot undo the wrongs of the past by exacting vengeance on those in the present.
We cannot erase prejudice by continuing to prejudge others and punish those we see as enemies.
We cannot stop violence by taking away tools of violence.
We cannot erase hatred by reacting with our own anger towards some we hold responsible.
We cannot demand that others spread love when we insist on retaining our own selfish views.


We are in this place of hatred and violence because we do not hold fast to the truth that all lives matter regardless of political views or occupation.  Regardless of skin color or religious beliefs.  Regardless of sexual preferences or age.  All lives matter because God gives life.  And every single person to whom He gives life  matters.  Every single one.

Because every single person is created in His image.  It doesn't matter the circumstances or actions of that life - every single person should be treated with dignity and compassion and respect .And every life should be valued.  No, I am not saying wrong-doing should not be punished.  Nor am I clamoring for "tolerance" or universal agreement on controversial issues.  But I am saying that every single person should be viewed as valuable.  Regardless of the sacrifice of our own convenience, political ideals or religious convictions. 


I do not have a three step solution.  I do not know how to fix this.  Honestly, it feels like we are in a state of anarchy.  Hopelessness.  Tragic and terrifying tumult.

All I can offer is that we each one examine our own hearts.  Is there prejudice there?  Of any kind? Do we dislike, distrust, dis-value any group of people?
If we find any wrong there, then let us each one address our own issues.  Let us each one confess that sin and realize that we all are capable of the most egregious of sins.  Apart from the grace of God, every single one of us could be pulling the trigger in any one of these situations.

And after searching our own souls for hatred towards any one, let us resolve to reject it completely.  Let us refuse to harbor resentment and distrust.  We do not have to agree with someone on how to vote or how to live our lives but we do need to agree that


and then resolve to protect ALL LIVES.

And then we have to throw ourselves on the mercy of God, praying : May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope (Romans 15:13)