I have been struggling today to make sense of all the social media posts, news coverage and the like in the wake of the senseless tragedies in Louisiana and Minnesota. Here’s what I’m doing right now. Maybe it will help you.
Mourn. The bible instructs us to mourn with those who mourn (Romans 12.15). There aren’t qualifiers here. It isn’t mourn with people you agree with. It isn’t mourn with people who you share ethnicity with. It is mourn with those who mourn. Men have died. Their families are hurting. There is mourning to be done now. Recognize this for what it is: tragedy. Weep and mourn.
Listen. Believers need to listen quickly, speak slowly, and anger slowly (James 1.19). I talked to several African-American pastor friends today. I expressed my brokenness over all the recent news incidents. I’ve asked what should I do. They all said essentially the same thing: listen. Engage your black friends and do so without bringing your perceptions and conceptions. There is more going on then meets the eye. Listen. Ask questions. Listen some more. Learn hurts, feelings, and pains.
Pray. In all things pray (Philippians 4.6) . Not sure what to do? Pray. Not sure how to respond? Pray. Fearful? Pray. Worried? Pray. It’s the most you can do. Here are some things that we need to pray for:
- Justice to reign (Jeremiah 23:5)
- Unity in the church (Galatians 3:28)
- All things to be made new (Revelation 21:5)
There is certainly more to do. There is certainly more that needs to be done, for now though: mourn, listen, pray.