by Joni Eareckson Tada
It’s been a tumultuous season in the streets of America. The scourge of coronavirus almost pales in comparison to the widespread rioting and looting, all of it sparked by the brutal actions of a rogue police officer that resulted in the death of George Floyd.
Like me, you could easily say, “I have seen violence and strife in the city” We are witnessing America’s “dividing wall of hostility”.
Racism has long been systemic, but now frustrations have led us to a breaking point. We are grieving the loss of life, the rage that resulted, and the untold damage to lives and to our communities. For years, the U.S. has tried to legislate away racism with landmark civil rights laws, but federal statutes do not uproot prejudice from the heart.
Nehemiah faced the same problem. When he saw his beautiful Jerusalem in shambles, its walls torn down and its people murdered in the streets, he said, “I sat down and wept and mourned for days” (Neh. 1:4).
But how many of us do what Nehemiah does next? He fasts and prays for his nation. But he doesn’t leave his prayer in God's hands; he does something. He offers himself as God's agent of change. Nehemiah was no community-organizer; he was merely “a cupbearer to the king.” But he knew he was God’s man for the job of rebuilding and reconciliation.
Jesus says in Matt. 5:9, “Blessed are the peacemakers.” pray for revival. Legislation will not transform hearts, but the gospel message of Jesus Christ will. When we live out the Good News in word and deed, when we become salt in our communities and win people to the side of our Savior, we will experience the blessing of being a peacemaker.cultural change starts with me… and you, Because God is not looking for people with degrees in criminal justice or social policy─he’s just looking for cupbearers like us.
"just between us"
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