SHIFT <- This word has been following me and finding me for the last few months.
I’ve let go of some things in my life in order to have open hands for others. I’ve never been great at juggling, y’all. Overwhelm is not something I handle well, if at all, and I’ve come to know and accept this about myself. Prioritizing activities and things to which I devote my time and energy has become a way of being for me. It helps me be better for me and for others.
Another shift that’s happened – and is still happening – is in my spiritual life. I’ve come to the hard realization that though I love God, I’m conflicted about what I’ve begun to think of as American Christianity. – And before anyone tries to toss a #notallchristians my way or argue with me that I’m beating up on church people, I kindly but firmly invite you to have a seat. I’m not doing either thing. I do see evidence of those working within the church to move forward in love by admitting to, apologizing for, and, through education, prevent further hate from having a place within their hearts. May it continue. – I have deep reservations about how a huge amount of “Christian” people can be okay with overt hate then turn around and tell those left most vulnerable to be quiet and instead seek unity.
“Good people” being complicit in hate is not a new concept, I know. My personal awakening to the reality of this has left me…lost, angry, hurt, despondent, embarrassed, and ashamed.
Why embarrassed and ashamed?
Because it wasn’t very long ago that I would have agreed with those “good people”. It wasn’t too long ago that I wouldn’t have bothered to look deeper into those calls for unity to see privilege and indifference at work.
It wasn’t too long ago that I wouldn’t have seen and understood that many of those calls for peace were really a call for peace and quiet.
And I would have been one of the mouths spouting and firmly believing this hateful and willfully ignorant rhetoric.
Ignorance, in this case, isn’t bliss. It’s a negligent form of hate.
I don’t want to be ignorant anymore.
I’m in no way trying to share with y’all that I have it all figured out or that I will never make a mistake as I clumsily step forward into this new awareness I have. The opposite is true on both counts.
But I’ll keep stepping (and learning, and listening, and creating, speaking, and sharing…).
Right now I’m feeling a lot of intense emotions and thinking big, heavy thoughts. I’m asking myself questions about what I’m doing to push towards – and have open hands for – a peace founded on justice and, honestly, my answers are letting me know I’ve got a LOT of work to do. I’m weak. The convenience of cloaking myself in white privilege and turning away from facts and from others’ pain is tempting…but love won’t let me.