1 Corinthians 9:20-23
20 And unto the Jews I became as a Jew, that I might gain the Jews; to them that are under the law, as under the law, that I might gain them that are under the law;
21 To them that are without law, as without law, (being not without law to God, but under the law to Christ,) that I might gain them that are without law.
22 To the weak became I as weak, that I might gain the weak: I am made all things to all men, that I might by all means save some.
23 And this I do for the gospel's sake, that I might be partaker thereof with you.
Black Lives Matter. These three words, while hardly debatable, have become incredibly divisive in the past year. I will type these words again, proudly. Black Lives Matter.
I don’t say that because I have any affiliation with the group Black Lives Matter. I say these words despite having reservations about the group itself and perhaps the ways it attempts to accomplish its aims.
The issue, however, is this: do you believe the three words? Almost all of us would say yes. If you are a gospel believing Christian, your answer to that question has to be yes. Your answer cannot simply be “Well, all lives matter”. Yes, they do. We agree on that. But the issue with what I am saying and what the group is saying is that specifically, black lives matter.
We live in an incredibly unfortunate era. We no longer communicate with each other about things that matter. Those types of things make us uncomfortable and may rub people the wrong way. Instead, we get almost all of our information from social media or the news media.
The issue, however, is that the 24 hour news cycle has become a monster: bent on pushing their individual political agenda and their ratings. In the words of a good friend, “The media are the war time profiteers of the modern age”.
The media tells us that the racial divide in this country is massive and unfixable. While I agree that racism may be an issue until Christ comes back, I refuse to be told how I feel by someone else.
That is why I have a simple but perhaps groundbreaking suggestion for believers and non-believers alike: talk to each other. If you are reading this, there is a very good chance you do not hate black people. You likely do not hate people of any race.
With that being the case, why not try to better understand what an African American goes through on a daily basis? How is it different from what you experience?
Rather than shouting “All Lives Matter” at the TV screen, why not make friends with a person of a different race and try to become sympathetic to their experiences?
In doing this, we become all things to all people. Rather than adding to the tension of a world already prepared to explode, we get to know each other better. We stop listening to the media and begin listening to each other. When we are sympathetic to someone’s struggles, we become better equipped to share the Gospel and they are more likely to hear it.
Put your pride away for a moment and try to listen to what is being said by a hurting world.
At the end of the day, we agree that black lives do matter. But what are we doing about it? Are we trying to reach people of a different race for Christ? Because if not, we may be trying to fulfill our own Great Commission rather than Christ’s.
If we truly wish to be all things to all people, we have to step outside of our comfort zone and share Christ even when it is someone from a different walk of life.