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Different Americas

January 7, 2021

by Mike Couchman

About 24 hours ago (as I type this), news of the breached Capitol in Washington D.C. was all over our phones (and the world). As divided as America seems, many of us agreed that we saw injustice on our screens. The agreement quickly splintered though. 2021 gonna 2020 I guess.

The injustice most of us seem to be together on is the injustice against our democracy. But then there’s how differently yesterday’s protesters were treated by authorities vs. last year’s BLM protestors. This injustice matters to some more than others. There are folks who don’t see the two as connected issues; others are like “how can you miss the way these things are intertwined?”

I’m reminded of the Martin Luther King Jr. quote: “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.” (Any chance we can all still agree with Dr. King?)

I sooooo badly want people who don’t see the same injustices as me to care enough to at least consider trying. It feels like yelling in the wind. Trying to push a wave back. Banging my head into a wall.

As I chewed on this today, it hit me that all of this is a heart thing. I don’t have the power to change a heart. Sway a mind? Maybe. But only God can change hearts.

He did invite us into that process though. Not by arguing people over to our point of view. Not by forcing our will on them. God gave us one central command: love our neighbors as ourselves. Love our enemies even. Today it may seem like that’s the same person.

God promised to set things straight. He’s going to wipe away the injustices my friends of color face. He will right the wrongs that have threatened our democracy. While He does, my job (and maybe yours) is to be a peacemaker. It’s on God from there. I trusted Him with my eternity, so I can trust Him in this moment too.

“Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.” (Matthew 5:9)

“But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you.” (Matthew 5:44)