In times of racial tension, it’s common to see two “extremes” in White people (although there are definitely more extremes on both ends).
One extreme is unloving, ignores, and says: The problems Black people experience are all their fault and I won’t listen to what they have to say unless it aligns with my viewpoint.
The other extreme is people pleasing and says: I must submit to everything Black people say (even though that’s impossible because not all Black people think the same).
The first extreme exists because of racism and idolization of self. Why does the second exist? The answer is many White people want validation from Black people that they are not racist.
Here’s the truth for White people (and EVERYONE): our validation and approval comes from Christ alone. We don’t have to prove ourselves, and when we do things from a motivation to be accepted, it’s not actually love for our brother or sister.
If anybody reading feels the tendency to ignore and/or blame, I encourage you to read all of Matthew 23. Jesus has some significant words to say for those who desire to make themselves look good and ignore justice, mercy, and faithfulness. (Blaming always elevates ourselves and removes accountability.)
If you are feeling the pressure to prove yourself as not-racist, I encourage you to put that down at the feet of Jesus, listen to what God has to say about you, and then listen to Black brothers and sisters without feeling the need to prove anything. Putting down the need to be seen as without fault will allow us to learn, love in action, and follow God’s leadership.
For my Black and other brothers and sisters of color reading this, I love and appreciate you.
“Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You give a tenth of your spices—mint, dill and cumin. But you have neglected the more important matters of the law—justice, mercy and faithfulness. You should have practiced the latter, without neglecting the former. You blind guides! You strain out a gnat but swallow a camel.Matthew 23:23-26
Am I now trying to win the approval of human beings, or of God? Or am I trying to please people? If I were still trying to please people, I would not be a servant of Christ.Galatians 1:10
No longer will they call you Deserted, or name your land Desolate. But you will be called Hephzibah, and your land Beulah; for the Lord will take delight in you, and your land will be married. As a young man marries a young woman, so will your Builder marry you; as a bridegroom rejoices over his bride so will your God rejoice over you.Isaiah 62:4-5