What We Don’t Want to Hear

repentWhen most of us were in school, chewing gum or talking back to the teacher was the great violation. I certainly spent my fair share of time in the principles office and getting much needed paddlings and detention. My classmates and I were certainly not angels by any stretch of the imagination, but murdering children and teachers never entered our mind.

The school shooting which began the recent trend of tragedies in the United States began in Pearl High School in Pearl, Mississippi in 1997. I was less than two miles from the school when it took place. We can look back over the past fifteen years and see the continuation of this type of activity and ask, “Why?” What has happened to our youth? What is happening to our nation? How do we turn this tide of violence?

When I was in school, every morning we had a bible devotion. I even read it one morning in high school. I was more nervous than a long-tailed cat in a room full of rocking chairs. I knew my life was ungodly and I was not right with God, but there was a healthy fear of God which abided upon me and our student body. Part of the reason for this healthy fear of God was because every day we started class with a bible devotion and prayer. Many of our teachers were Christians and they freely discussed the things of the Lord with us. They pointed us constantly to a higher level of accountability and toward a life of honesty, respect and discipline. Continue reading “What We Don’t Want to Hear”

You Might Be A Racist If…

I grew up in the deep south. I’ve seen racism up close and personal. As a 60’s child I lived through the racial uprisings of the civil rights movement. I saw the ugliness, the hatred and the foolishness of racism from a front row seat.

When I became a Christian at the age of 18, I was equally appalled at the racism which existed, and still exists, in much of the Church. It was even uglier and more vile because those spouting it claimed to belong to Jesus Christ…however, their speech and actions betrayed their racist hearts and revealed their true colors. (no pun intended)

Racism is not just a Caucasian or African-American problem…it is a human problem. It exists in all communities and is aimed at those who are different from the personal norm. I am not one to mince words; I leave that for the crooked politicians and phony preachers who seek political correctness. I’m not seeking anyone’s approval. I only desire to be faithful to Christ and His Words…that’s it!

With that, I would like to share some lifelong observations about racism. A litmus test, if you will, to examine our actions and thought processes to determine if there are areas of racism hidden in our heart which we may not be aware of. I’m not concerned with secular Continue reading “You Might Be A Racist If…”

The Gospel – The Answer for Church Diversity

Here in Mississippi, the epicenter of the Civil Rights struggles from the past generation, the Gospel alone proves to be the answer for civil rights and church diversity. No, not the answer which the political pundits and flame throwers promote. But that which is real, eternal and offers change from the inside!

While many still make their living off continually discussing ways to create church diversity, the answer is simple. We don’t need another book, another conference, another Continue reading “The Gospel – The Answer for Church Diversity”

Mississippi Burning – Not Any More!

The movie “Mississippi Burning” was a portrayal of the civil rights struggles in the deep south during the early 1960’s. It focused on the brutal murder of three civil rights workers in Philadelphia, Mississippi. Racism was the accepted norm during those times, and hatred against different ethnic groups was a stance publicly endorsed by politicians and churches alike. Though racism existed against various ethnicities, the dominent thrust was between ‘blacks and whites.’ While Caucasians had the power in society to broadcast their venom, African-Americans usually just had the pulpits to display theirs.

The integration of the schools, teachers, neighborhoods, political offices and the work place were hot beds of racial tension and hostility. I lived through this period as a young boy and grew up only 60 miles from Philadelphia. I saw racism up close and personal as Continue reading “Mississippi Burning – Not Any More!”

Unmasking Racism in the Evangelical Church

Move around among evangelical circles and it becomes obvious that a silent undertow of racism exists. Most congregations are either “Lilly White” or “Midnight Black.” Yep, growing up in the South has been a sharp learning curve of picking up on the silent innuendos of racist behavior. We may rarely hear slanderous terms as honky, cracker, nigger or monkey to attack different ethnic groups. However, the ungodly and non-christian spirits which promote ethnic supremacy have not pulled an “Elvis” and left the building. Instead, they become politically smooth and careful to protect the musings of the heart. While many use words which are smooth as butter, war is still in their heart. (Psalms 55:21)

All genuine Christians hate and loath racism! I was part of planting an ethnically mixed church in a downtown area across from where the KKK members were put on trial for the murder of the three civil rights workers in 1964. (Depicted in the movie, “Mississippi Burning.”) A lot could be Continue reading “Unmasking Racism in the Evangelical Church”