WMU of Texas family, thank you for joining us for June’s devotional. It is Tuesday instead of Wednesday, but what I have to say can’t wait another day.
When I started sharing these devotions, our focus was on the pandemic, COVID-19. The devotions were a way for me to connect with you to ensure that you were reminded to connect with the Father.
- To draw your strength from Him
- To look to Him for your peace
- To look to Him for guidance on the steps you should take
- To look to Him as the source to fill your every need.
The goal was for the short devotional time to:
- Challenge you
- Cause you to reflect
- Drive you to pray, and
- To spur you into action in some type of way.
Now, I don’t know everything because I’m not God, but also because I haven’t lived life through your eyes, through your experiences, in your skin.
Just like you have not lived your life through mine.
Today is a challenging day. Even more challenging today than it was yesterday, which was even more challenging than the day before. Because every day, there is something new that happens in our country that causes me to stop. Stop and ask, "What year is it? Is it 1960 or 2020?"
Unless you are fasting from watching television or reading any news, then you are aware of the most recent case of recorded police brutality where an African American man, George Floyd, was killed on video. A video that’s been played over and over again on national television and social media outlets. What I saw caused me to get physically ill, not only because we watched a man be killed on a Minneapolis street, but also because this was not an isolated incident, but one that was captured on video that day.
Now, many of you watching this video know me personally, so you are fully aware that I am an African American female, born in these United States of America. So let me offer to you a perspective... I am not exempt.
- I am not exempt from racial profiling. Sometimes called: driving while black, shopping while black, or most recently, birdwatching while black.
- I am not exempt from being followed around a store…aside from the nervous glances or direct stares…sometimes having it clearly stated that there is nothing for me there.
- I am not exempt from being judged just because of the color of my skin or even because of the way I choose to wear my hair in its natural state.
- I am not exempt from frustration because of seeing example after example of a black or brown person (adult or child) being treated less than human.
- I am not exempt from being tired. Tired of experiencing racism & discrimination. Tired of seeing blatant injustice go unprosecuted. Tired of seeing men and women that look like me be hunted down and killed for what…going for a jog? Tired of waking up many mornings with a scream inside that I don’t feel like I am allowed to let out…so I hold it in…Tired.
Yet, I am challenged today to be unapologetically who God created me to be - a black female. He knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise Him, for I know I am fearfully and wonderfully made.
I am challenged today to speak truth in love.
I am challenged today not just to love in word or talk, but in deed and in truth.
The word of God challenges not just me, but it challenges US - His children, the body of Christ.
- In Mark 12, to love the Lord, your God, with all our heart and with all our soul and with all our mind and with all your strength. The second is this: love your neighbor as yourself. There is no other commandment greater than these.
- God’s word challenges us in Micah 6:8 to do what is good….what is required of the Lord…. To do justice, to love kindness and to walk humbly with your God
- In Matthew 7, judge not, so that you won’t be judged.
- God’s word challenges us, in Proverbs 31:8-9 to speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves; ensure justice for those being crushed. To speak up for the poor and helpless, and see that they get justice.
We may never agree on everything. Politically, we may vote on opposite sides of the aisle for various reasons, but it is very clear that oppression of black and brown people exists in this country - racism exists.
As Christians, we are challenged to...
- Give justice to the poor and the orphan
- Uphold the rights of the oppressed and the destitute.
- Rescue the poor and helpless
- Deliver them from the grasp of evil people.
That is in Psalm 82:3-4.
So today, I hope you feel challenged, as this time of reflection was not meant to make any of us comfortable.
- Challenged to draw your strength from Him, to look to Him for your peace, to look to Him for guidance on the steps you should take, to look to God as the source to fill your every need.
- Challenged to reflect on your relationships, what you’ve seen and who you are in Christ and who He is calling you to be on June 2, 2020.
- Challenged to be bold and to act on whatever God assigns you to do.
We are not ok and it will take all of our voices to silence injustice in this country.
LET US PRAY.
To watch previous devotionals from Executive-Director Tamiko Jones, visit our Facebook page here. New devotionals from Executive Director-Treasurer Tamiko Jones are posted on the first Wednesday of each month.