Protect Your Heart
'Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.'
1 Corinthians 13:4-7
Racism, yes I said it! R A C I S M! Now slow down…please be calm. I am not here to instigate any form of hatred or anger. I am a Christian and the love of Christ dwells in me so there is no vacuum for such. But as a recipient of hatred due to color, I sure have a lot to say (Good and bad of course because not everyone with lighter skin is racist as I have very good friends who are so as well).
Nevertheless, this does not erase the fact that it is out there. So I am writing this to share how I deal with such issues to protect my heart from hatred and anger.
''Hatred stirs up conflict, but love covers over all wrongs. '
START YOUR DAY WITH GOD
For me, daily devotions are a must every morning. Sometimes, they are long other times they are short. I do this not only because It has become a habit but because it helps me start my day calmly, it gives me God’s words to reflect on through the day, it also serves as a source of reminder that there is God and he is watching me. It makes me slower to take action and speak hateful words. So when my emotions betray me, God’s word echoes in my heart and it helps me stay calm.
'remembering without ceasing your work of faith, labor of love, and patience of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ in the sight of our God and Father, knowing, beloved brethren, your election by God. '
I Thessalonians 1:3-4
I was on the train one day, just sitting. Suddenly, a man walked up to me and demanded that I got up for him. I was shocked; I smelled for alcohol but he seemed clean, he wasn’t too old to stand and there were many empty seats. It became clear to me what he was doing. He began hitting my legs with his bags and I remained seated, not saying one word. Just like that, a man in the coach walked up to him and demanded he apologized and spoke to me with respect. Then I responded, “thank you”. He literally “dragged” the man to another seat.
This is one instance of course and doesn’t happen all the time but when such acts are done publicly, in the plain eyes of people, ignoring is the best thing to do. Most of these acts done are meant to portray you as what they think you are…wild, angry, and animalistic. Your silence completely dispels all that and gives you peace within yourself.
'A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.”'
I always confront quietly racist people. This is because I have observed that they only do it this way to avoid being seen or perceived to be racist even though they are. In cases like this, I always confront them. I do this to make them realize I am quite aware of their actions and I call them out and question them loudly for what they did. I don’t hide my feelings towards them and it has worked a lot of times. Over a few occasions, they walked up to me and talked. Some apologized, some didn’t. But one thing is certain, I did not leave there feeling burdened or inferior.
'Let no one despise your youth, but be an example to the believers in word, in conduct, in love, in spirit, in faith, in purity. '
I Timothy 4:12
GO BACK TO GOD
I am also aware that these ideas may not apply to everyone as some have their consciences seared with a hot iron. So regardless of all that may happen or the names you may be called, go back to God in prayer. Pour your heart to Him and cry out. Express how pained you feel and pray for his kingdom to come and his will be done. A kingdom where there are no colors and we are all one.
'He who does not love does not know God, for God is love. '
I John 4:8
Always remember, you are made in God’s Perfect Image!