Dear Father – Letter #9
July 7, 2016
My heart is really troubled tonight by the endless tragedy that takes place in this world. It’s nothing new, but never have we lived in a time where it was readily available to view at the click of a button. Watching the videos released of these two men being shot is just…heart.breaking. soul.grieving. Seeing the life just leave their eyes…those are the kind of things you can’t unsee. And I don’t want to move on. I don’t want to act like it didn’t happen. I don’t want to keep scrolling. I don’t want to pretend there isn’t a serious problem. I don’t want to see smiling selfies on my newsfeed.
GOD, IT HURTS!
And as I shake my head…back and forth…back and forth. God, is this really the world I live in? Is this the reality of all our lives? You can’t be serious. And I just want to yell, “PLEASE MAKE IT STOP!” This hatred. This evil. This war. It’s just too much to bare. It’s just.too.much. We are fighting down here on this earth and we are so badly losing.
“DO YOU SEE US?!”
You know, I hesitate to open my mouth today. I married a black man and I just can’t fathom color being an issue. I laugh at times because it’s almost like I forget my skin is a different color than his (but every time I get a sunburn I am quickly reminded just how different we are!) And again I shake my head…back and forth…back and forth… There is just no way. Color can not be the issue, right? Seriously…c-o-l-o-r, really?? Someone’s skin looks different so…so what? So my life is easier and theirs is harder? My life is worth more and theirs is worth less? My life is less threatening to others and theirs is more dangerous?
How does everyone — ev.er.y.one. — not understand how ridiculous that sounds???
Shaking my head again…
I know. I do. It’s more than that. This war that plays out before our very eyes is more than color. More than human error. More than unawareness.
And I have to stop there. Because no matter who we blame, or how any of us say it — Father, I am the one who needs forgiveness. I am the one who has said hurtful things to others; I am the one who has held ugliness inside my own heart; I am the one who has judged others; I am the one who struggles to forgive; I am the one who has misrepresented Your name; I am the one who has stayed silent when words were needed.
It’s not: “what does everyone else need to do?”
It’s not: “when will everyone else stop?”
It’s not: “why does everyone else do this?”
It’s not: “what has everyone else done?”
It’s: what can I do to make a difference in this mess of a world?
It’s: where am I when injustice takes place?
It’s: how can I forgive without keeping a record of wrongs?
It’s: how can I represent Your unconditional love?
It’s: When will I start being the change I want to see?
Father, I know you see us today. I know you see our broken hearts and you mourn with us. “Have mercy on us all” continuously flows from my heart and out of my mouth. Father, have mercy on us all. And it is my prayer that we would be covered in your mercy, and would come running to your open arms.
All my love,