How many times have you heard that phrase recently, “God is in charge?” It does give us a feeling of comfort to remind ourselves of the presence of the Holy One in our lives. In this very volatile time in the world, we especially need reassurance that God is with us. By declaring God our Great Defender, however, are we relieving ourselves of responsibility as disciples to help fill the world with God’s love?
Yes, I do believe God is in charge, but we must not forget that we are His hands and arms to be used to care for other’s needs. We are His legs and feet for helping our neighbors as they journey through perilous times. We are His mouth piece to witness His love for all people and His ears for listening to the marginalized.
As one of the “privileged white” I have often declared myself to not be racist or prejudice. I tell myself that I surely do not discriminate against anyone. But is that really true? Am I ready to give up my “whiteness,” “entitlements,” “privilege” and also give up the comfort and safety that I enjoy? Am I ready to discuss “White Supremacy” openly so that it can be dissected, studied, destroyed, and replaced with a culture that values, honors, and celebrates all God’s children.
I feel study and discussion needs to be part of the solution. Are we willing to spend time reading and viewing videos of what it means to be black in our society? Can we openly discuss the issues surrounding our culture of white superiority? Can we call persons of color into our circles and share their history, their stories, their fears, and their hopes? Can persons of color, with patience and love, help us to understand, collaborate, and change our behavior that hurts others?
I challenge each of you, as lay persons in leadership positions, to accept the challenge of study and discussion, and perhaps even actions, to bring our world into a circle of God’s love. My church is using “White Fragility” by Robin Diangelo, but there are many other resources available. Find many possibilities on our conference website or Discipleship Ministries website. We are all pretty comfortable with Zoom now, which makes a discussion group available to many more people. Let us work on being part of the solution. God is in charge but we are His Army, ready, willing and able to transform the world.
Mary Feit, CLSp
Great Plains Conference
Director of Lay Servant Ministries