3 Action Steps I’m Taking to Examine My Heart
Jacob Gordon |
June 11, 2020
I'm feeling a lot of emotions recently about everything happening in our country and now Cincinnati. Ranging mostly between anger and sadness. I'm sure a lot of you are too.
Being completely honest, these are emotions I've rarely had to feel before towards racial injustice as a white person.
I've had the option to look at it with apathy because I have the privilege to do so. I've had the option to be upset about it but shy away from any sort of action.
Over the past month following the death of Ahmaud Arbery and George Floyd, I've become angry at our country and myself for choosing to wait for something like this to happen before truly entering in. So with that, I want to repent for choosing the easy road.
I hope everyone got the chance to see Beth's conversation with Michael Sickles. They had a very important dialogue. Also, her other video with a very powerful yet simple call to obedience and action.
With those videos, other things I've seen and heard recently, and my own convictions from Jesus, I want to share three simple action steps I'm wanting to take moving forward:
- I want to look around at my circle of people. I need to take a step back and ask myself, "Am I around people of different opinions, upbringings, and skin color?" If not, why is that?
Most people (myself included) always choose to spend time with people similar to us because it's comfortable and has the least resistance in making a connection. It's just human nature and there's no shame in that, but I want to challenge myself to exit my comfort zone and connect with people who are different from me. I have so much to learn through this.
- I want to examine my subconscious instincts. Do I have a tendency to be more "on guard" around people of different skin colors, economic classes, etc.? If so, where did that come from? And how can I work to examine and reverse that?
I grew up in a family of white people, so there are certain tendencies that were instilled on me in my upbringing. Jesus has the power to change our hearts. I need to be honest with myself, with others, and with him. I'm going to enter into this conviction and ask him to align my heart with his. If I ignore the fight against these subconscious instincts I might have, it will breed ignorance and prejudice in my heart.
- I want to ask Jesus how I can be an ally in this situation. Am I ready to do what I can to fight injustice despite the possibility of losing comfort? Am I ready to challenge people around me even if it creates an awkward space? If I am able to weigh these small consequences against the hurt that others have faced in our country, I can choose to act.
In conclusion, we live in a broken world that will someday be restored. But on this side of eternity, I want to challenge you, especially those who look like me, to ask yourselves where your heart truly lies in the racial injustice our country is facing.
Let's challenge ourselves to enter in.
Not because of my call, or anyone else's, but because Jesus wants us to.
Jacob Gordon is the Welcome Team Coordinator serving with Vineyard Kids.