We are one race, the human race. We had best learn to recognize ourselves in the faces of others. God gave us two commands that He said took precedence over all others.
“Jesus replied: ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.” (Matthew 22:37-40)
Life is a gift, a gift from God – a wonderful, precious, mysterious, sacred, holy gift. Therefore, life matters. And if one life matters, then all lives matter. If we say one life doesn’t matter, then we denigrate all lives. But because life does matter, then all lives matter. Precisely because all lives matter, black lives matter.
Because every life matters, we cannot demean, devalue, diminish, dismiss, destroy nor ignore any life, not even one. Each life is of infinite value to the Creator, Author and Sustainer of all lives, of each and every life. When we diminish another’s life, we diminish our own life in the process.
Because God sees every person as of infinite worth, we are to see them in that same way and to treat them accordingly. Luke 9:48 explains it this way,
“Whoever welcomes this little child in My name welcomes Me; and whoever welcomes Me welcomes the One who sent Me. For he who is least among you all – he is the greatest.”
Furthermore we are to “Seek justice, encourage the oppressed. Defend the cause of the fatherless, plead the case of the widow.” (Isaiah 1:17)
Romans 12:13-19 tells us more about how to treat others. “Share with God’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality. Bless those who persecute you; . . . Live in harmony with one another. . . . Do not repay anyone evil for evil. . . . as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. Do not take revenge, my friends, but leave room for God’s wrath,”
We are to treat others well because God loves them so well. “The King will reply, ‘I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.’ ” (Matthew 25:40)
“So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.” (Matthew 7:12)
A simple solution to the problems of protesting and violence that have plagued our cities for the past month. If each of us would follow the instructions given to us in the words above, we wouldn’t be experiencing the chaos and the destruction that we witness on a daily basis.
Each one of us is a part of this equation. We are either a positive or a negative. We are either part of the problem or we are part of the solution. We are either tearing down or we are building up. We are inflicting harm or we are bringing healing.
The choice is ours to make anew each day. Lord, help me to choose Your way.
sincerely, Grace Day