“The beginning of wisdom is this: Get wisdom, and whatever you get, get insight. Prize her highly, and she will exalt you; she will honor you if you embrace her.”
Proverbs 4:7-8 English Standard Version
I wandered around my happy place Friday evening. I haven’t been to my happy place in several months due to Covid 19, so when I walked through the doors of Barnes and Nobel and that aroma of brewed coffee greeted me…
I heard music.
I wanted to open my arms and swirl around in the aisle like Maria did on the mountaintop in The Sound of Music, but I was wearing a mask and already having trouble breathing.
I meandered over to the Christian aisle to see what new books had come out. There, a boy around my son’s age looked at the Bibles. He glanced back at me. I thought it was because I had gotten too close. I took a step back to adhere to social distancing. A few minutes later…
“Ma’am, do you know anything about Bibles?” he said. “What is this type called that has the original text side by side with a normal Bible?’
“Oh, that’s a Parallel,” I said. “It’s set up so you can see the exact wording from the original text.”
“I want to find a Bible that doesn’t have man’s interpretation,” he said. “The real thing.”
“The New American Standard and the English Standard Version are considered good literal translations.”
We discussed study Bibles and those with pastor’s notes. He claimed his grandma’s Bible which he’d been reading had Jimmy Swaggort’s commentaries in it.
I laughed. “I don’t know much about Swaggort, but Tony Evans has a good commentary Bible.”
“I don’t know who he is. I’m new at this.”
Later, while checking out, I found him behind me.
“Did you decide on a Bible?” I said.
“Yeah, I decided to get the parallel one. I want to be sure. You know?”
He wanted to be sure.
I’ve been under scrutiny. I suppose you will be when you are a blog writer and put your life out there as much as I do. Several young people have criticized the phrase I posted in a blog post written in 2016 “I chose to stand on the rock of my salvation for all lives matter, no matter what the color.” To be honest, I didn’t even remember it was there, and I’ve since deleted it. I would in no way want for a person to read my post pointing them to my Heavenly Father, and be distracted by one phrase.
But I’ll be honest, it really stung that one line written in 2016 would delete my whole testimony against racism and warrant criticism as if I was a racist myself. Furthermore, the criticisms came from white people.
In 2016 the Black Lives Matter movement exploded on the scene in car fires and looting. According to God’s word we are not to participate in lawlessness. Their message seemed interlaced with hate, and I being married to a black man and raising four bi-racial children steered clear of it and instructed my kids to do the same.
Time has passed and hearts broke when George Floyd begged for air. All hearts.
We need to be seekers of truth. Find it. Hold onto it. Want some truth?
The truth is white lives have always mattered. We as whites have never had to feel as if we don’t measure up because of the color of our skin; and that’s exactly why it infuriates people of color when our response to their message is “all lives matter.” They don’t need our correction on this issue when we’ve never walked in their skin. Besides, they know all lives matter. In order to move towards healing it starts by at least acknowledging the lives that have been treated unfairly matter. We also need to acknowledge the horrific injustices that have been administered to them, and, if we’ve held any hate in our hearts towards anyone of any color, class, or creed to repent of it.
Another truth, we need to stop dissecting people–trying to find something wrong as if we are the racist police. That’s not loving–it’s pride. We could all use a bit of humbling these days.
Another thing, we need to stop allowing the terrible deeds of some bad weeds to set fire to the entire crop.
Not all cops are bad.
Not all white people are racists.
Not all black people hate white people.
And yes, all of us matter to God who created white, black, and everything in between in His image. Maybe if we see ourselves through His eyes we’d treat each other a lot kinder.
How’s that for truth?
I neglected to mention the young man I met Friday evening in my happy place was black. I knew in that moment God plopped this southern blonde right there helping a young black man in which Bible to buy. At the same hour other young people his age protested in the streets, he was on the hunt for truth. He was new at it, but he wanted to be sure he got his hands on it. He was willing to pay his hard-earned $50 for it. He stated that.
We could all learn from him.