distinctions that destroy

just in case someone is checking this space daily with the hope of finding something inspirational and beneficial (pardon me while i fantasize), i apologize for my recent inconsistency.  it’s kind of a combination of things: my days have been unusually busy lately, my family has needed me, and i am not overcome with something profound to say.  if there’s something that you, my bloggy buddies, would like to talk about, just let me know.  i’ll be grateful for the input.

we talked about racism at our bible study last wednesday night.  in this part of the world (oklahoma), racism is prevalent.  for the most part, people are aware of the problem (even christian people), but are disinclined to deal with it.

is racism a problem where you live?

in my mind, the problem of racism shares a significant similarity with the problem of legalism.  if i’m not very careful, i sometimes default to my comfortable ol’ works-based faith.  you know, the feeling that god likes me more when i’m good…when i follow the rules (what an intimacy killer!).  the problem (and here’s the correlation between racism and legalism) is that it’s hard for me to differentiate between the truth and my upbringing.  my pastors and sunday school teachers all meant well, but they taught me a lot of things that were not biblical.  they called things “sin” that scripture doesn’t.  they defined christianity on the basis of negatives (“christians don’t do that and don’t go there”).  but those people loved me and i loved them.  and the things they taught me “felt” right.

so now i’m messed up.  i have to work very, very hard to separate the truth of teh bible from the “truth” of my upbringing.

people that suffer from racism are dealing with generations of prejudice.  they heard/saw people they love and respect categorize people based on those prejudices: “they’re all lazy” or “you can’t trust them” or “they make better ball players.”  those types of attitudes barely hide the hate just under the surface.  and those types of generalities simply don’t work in the kingdom.  paul wrote:

In Christ’s family there can be no division into Jew and non-Jew, slave and free, male and female. Among us you are all equal. That is, we are all in a common relationship with Jesus Christ. Also, since you are Christ’s family, then you are Abraham’s famous “descendant,” heirs according to the covenant promises. (galatians 3:28-29)

the distinctions we’ve worked hard to establish and maintain all these years…it’s time for them to go.

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2 thoughts on “distinctions that destroy

  1. Agreed. There is nothing much worse than racism. We all tend to prejudge people that are different than us, of this I am sure. But I am always amazed at how some “Christians” can justify out-and-out racism. Upbringing is no excuse. If you cannot say something around a certain race of people, but have no problem saying it around your race of people…you probablly shouldn’t say it all.

  2. Before I say anything, let me state clearly that I oppose racism on any level.

    Now I might get in trouble for this, but does anyone else feel the tide of reverse discrimination/racism? From affirmative action to impending Caucasian minority status, there sometimes seems to be an unfair standard. Maybe I’m just jaded, but I get tired of having to be politically correct while newscasters increasingly over-pronounce their last name to show their ethnic background and every other month is such and such appreciation month. I guess what I’m saying is, why isn’t equal simply equal?

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