I Prayed have prayed
Lord, help us to divest ourselves of every presumption, in order to truly seek to grasp what it is like to live and love, in a substitutionary way for others.

Accept one another, then, just as Christ accepted you, in order to bring praise to God. ~Romans 15:7

In processing the racism and lack of acceptance that remains in the fiber of our nation, which is touted as the “melting pot”, I have contemplated what part I play in bringing forth unity. We all have been jarred with disillusionment to face the reality, once again, that while we thought we had come so far in the area of acceptance, we still have a great distance to traverse.

Romans 15:7 captured my heart in college and has remained a focal point for me as I interact with others. We all are made in the image of God. Every one of us. We are all equally loved, valued and assigned significance, as children of God. The Creator of the Universe is reflected in every single human being. Romans commands us to treat others with the equivalent acceptance we have received from Jesus Christ. The result of our indistinguishable acceptance of others, brings forth praise to God!

Throughout my life and even recently, I have been distraught to acknowledge my own biases and prejudices. Plain and simple, I have presuppositions within my heart that have caused me to judge people with inequity. Judgments I have no right to make. Period. As a white woman living in an affluent area, I have seldom, if ever, endured injustice. Confronting the truth of my own underlying discrimination toward others, even if it feels negligible and is gravely suppressed, feels all the more grievous as I raise my precious son, Ezra, who is from Uganda, Africa.

Ezra is an utter delight. This is a truth held by all who meet him. This is not an overstatement. Adopting our son, without question, is the most profound leap of faith we have ever taken as a family. The richness we have found as a family, due to the addition of Ezra, eclipses every single expectation we ever could have imagined. Ezra is seldom angry and he is undoubtedly one of the kindest and most patient individuals we have ever met. Additionally, he is easy on the eyes… downright adorable.

All of this said, my heart agonizes at the thought of how Ezra will be seen when he has the stature of a man. If his own mother recognizes deep-seated prejudice that she wars against, how will others, who don’t know and adore him, perceive him? How will our community, which is not very racially diverse, receive him, if he asks one of their white daughters to Homecoming or Prom, in a few years? As I think of him driving or walking by himself, as a teen/man, as compared to my older white son, my fears are understandably heightened. With all of our children, we have emphasized the utter disgrace slavery was; the indelible mark it has made on our nation. We have instilled equal acceptance of all individuals, regardless, not only of color, but also of ability, socio-economic status, and the like. Nevertheless, our conversations have been different and I imagine, increasingly moreso as Ezra matures, regarding how he responds to others and is received by others. This feels all the more poignant being that Ezra is raised in a family with five white individuals.

I am currently reading a pivotal book called: J-Curve by Paul E. Miller. I have been overcome and challenged by the notion of substitutionary love. The Bible and the life of Jesus repeatedly demonstrates this reality. Miller exhorts us to “not merely believe the gospel, but to become like the gospel“. Additionally, he compares the difference between many who will seek to “break others” instead of substituting oneself for another, thereby being “broken for others“. It’s the old adage of putting yourself in the shoes of another. Yet, the fact remains, we are incapable of truly putting ourselves in the shoes of most. Therefore, it is pertinent, we look to the God, who created all individuals, to supernaturally infuse us with the ability to literally substitute ourselves for another.

Are we willing to assess the prejudice within each of us? Can we be brutally honest and acknowledge the error of our ways and our thinking? Are we willing to be receptive to difficult conversations or views expressed, by those who are different? Are we able to dig deeper than we ever have before to advance change? Can we divest ourselves of every presumption, in order to truly seek to grasp what it is like to live and love, in a substitutionary way for others? I am persuaded, only in Christ, will we ever experience full acceptance and peace and dispense those virtues to others.

As you move outside your world to engage with a problem, you embrace Jesus’s suffering, the cost of love. ~Paul E. Miller

May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you a spirit of unity among yourselves as you follow Christ Jesus… ~Romans 15:6a

For He Himself is our peace, who has made the two one and has destroyed the barrier, the dividing wall of hostility… ~Ephesians 2:14

Author Susie Smith blogs at HE is trustworthy.

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Kate Roll
June 25, 2020

Here’s the flip side of this article. If I was Black would you think?
I am white to God delight as I was knitted in my mothers womb. Raised inner city by my white
Mother and Puerto Rican step father. I LIVED the riots right smack in the middle. 1967-68. Our three thousand dollars row home was burned down later with the entire block. Well adapted to hardship, we never blinked and never hated. Two days before Thanksgiving we are now living in small hotel room. I was the white kid on the bus during desegregation. The only white kid. I was maliciously harassed and my Father beats me for giving blacks my nickel for lunch everyday. I quickly learn predator instinct and earned a reputation that I am not proud of. To show any weakness made me a target. It wasn’t hatred but pure survival. It wasn’t their color it was the brutality of their actions and I earned a reputation. Parents split and than disappeared. No parents on my own. Worked, quit school at 16 and the bottom fell out. At 16 I quit school, had two job and 5 months later couldn’t survive. Ended up in Buffalo, had good grades, graduated, 17 years old joined the Navy. While on duty at night as a dental technician (United States Naval Academy) told to open the locked door by a black security officer, I was violently attacked . Federal offense, He went to prison. I have been pulled over by police . Police officer informed me “there are no white people here” . My crime was being white in public. To much to write but 4 days before Mothers Day while I was preparing to go to Harrisburg, Pa. to celebrate, I was told via a phone call my mother was murdered. I am only 40 and nothing seemed to change much. The man was black however due to ” lack of evidence” a person she knew, no charges were filed. She was an low income woman and not worth the paperwork. Hate is a choice and one I never made. Consequently, the commandment from Jesus is to love God with all our heart, minds and souls. The second is to love your neighbors (why) so that they know Jesus. This commandment applies TO ALL RACES. No exemptions. Period. Had I not faced mind boggling racism towards me, I would have never been so tested to own LOVE completely. Hardship, injustice,, hunger, no shelter, all profitable for the kingdom. Sheltering children, teenagers although understable, does not prepare them for the reality of the time we live in. The generation now is frightening so emotionally weak that a mere stare or harsh word safe zones are necessary. Prominent in white individuals.
We know face generations raised self absorbed theat all whites and absolutely everything is unjust or racist. Yes, indeed I said it. Decades I lived through produced multi generations of a large percentage of Blacks who truly believe they have entitlement. Approximately 36 years ago while in a black university , I sat through lectures,and spoon feed black injustice while whites became apologetic for being white. Now white privilege rolls of everyone’s lips. The indoctrination so extensive that the poorest in our nation, whites in Appalachia are privileged. Guilty by skin color. This IS NOT of God. I am far from naive. Can anyone see thieves, looters, arsonist, multi cultural Marxism. Where is it written in the Word of God to apologize for the color of anyone’s skin color? I have LIVED my entire life listening and shaking my head to the endless apologies and oppression. Black and yes white, well funded Marxist Organizers finally figured out the psychological handbook to have the whites so apologetic to even breathe air. I have a long history of hearing Satans lies. From elementary school, school protest and I was to scream and clap to free Angela Davis. A terriost . I came from generations of peasants. Therefore, if suddenly I was black and not white my story would be used as evidence of systematic racism. Life is not fair. Being judge, snobby, preconceived, ideals , rejection are valuable God given testing in learning the imperative command. Love your neighbor as yourself. It’s through the Fire and purification of the filthy heart that pure love comes and glorifies God. Demonic people, the lost, those in bondage will NEVER reciprocate. They hate Jesus so why would any born again Christian believe they will be hated as well? Jesus told us , they hated me, they will also hate you. Very simple. No systematic theology necessary. Let all cleanse our hearts daily. ALL means ALL. The church sin of endorsings the culture mandate verse strictly teach the WORD of God. All this, my past, my experiences, lengthy detail. To say this, iIn the name of Jesus, I reject apologizing for my color. I reject passive acceptance of looters, liars, arsonist and those who pervert civil authority as agents of evil. I reject any accepted cultural norms that opposes the Written Word and act accordingly. I reject all agents of evil on assignment to promote wicked ideology. I reject universities who poisoned the young minds with enough truth that tickled their itching ears . Granting permission not by God , to be evil as they stand for social justice utilizing hatred and violence. I reject any church that by omission or commission continue to preaching in lock step with this vile culture. I are groaned in grief for decades the nonsense of appeasement to evil. The forces that oppose our God we failed to take the only knee that bows alone to Our God, maker of Heaven and Earth. I know this is long. Not intended for offense , just consider each sentence. Love overcomes evil and set my feet on the rock. Love is my offering to God so He may be glorified. Do something.

Lisa Plummer
June 25, 2020

I have decided to invite people to talk together about the difficult topic of racial relations.

I suggested that my pastor host a roundtable discussion on a live Facebook session. But then it occurred to me that this hasto be done on a heart to heart, face-to-face, side-by-side level instead of just the leadership level.
It needs to be discussed in micro and macro settings!

I reached out to about 10 people in my workplace and invited them to intentionally discuss race over lunch. They all enthusiastically agreed, sharing some of their experiences as we had our initial conversation.
It’s painful. Listening is a gift to both parties-
They are heard and my self-awareness is elevated.

I thought our church already had these issues settled and was an island of racial harmony in our community. But after I took initiative in my workplace, I saw a sickening rant on FB in my church family page!
I knew I had to do the same thing at church, too.
I started by inviting our church secretary, African-American sister, over to talk. While in the midst of a great conversation, it occurred to me that we could start a small group together! I asked her to pray about hosting a series of movies with strong racial themes, which we could discuss afterwards.
She likes the idea.
My goals:
1. Listen
2. Affirm
3. Enter into the suffering of my brothers and sisters
4. Provide a platform for their gifts, strengths, and God-given talent
5. Affirm their identity in Christ wherever possible
6. Decrease my personal ignorance on what white privilege means and how it covertly operates by moving in the opposite spirit

If you want to further discuss this with me personally and pray about doing something similar, e-mail me. I’d be honored to pray together with you about a blueprint for your sphere of influence.

    June 25, 2020

    Thank you for your courage to undertake this! I pray that your discussions will edify all who participate! Amen!


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