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    Decide today who you will be tomorrow-Purposeful living brings reconciliation.

    Circa 2002, I made the first of several visits to the King Center and Center for Non-Violent Social Change in Atlanta, Georgia. At the time I was a college student and I was highly impacted by Dr. Martin Luther King and his unwavering commitment to justice and peace. I made up my mind then that I wanted to be like Dr. King. I wanted to be courageous and peaceful in the face of evil and committed to loving people with the sacrificial love of Jesus. I have since developed a mantra that has followed me into Christian leadership, “decide now.” When I am speaking with a young lady about sexual…

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    Running the Race of Life

    As Thanksgiving approaches, many of us are gearing up for our favorite running day of the year. Even non-runners love the annual Turkey Trot where young and old alike jog in anticipation of the great feast ahead. Then you can eat all the turkey dinner you want AND have a second helping of dessert guilt-free. Okay, maybe that last part is just my tradition. Unfortunately, I can’t run this year due to a back injury. Doctor’s orders. As I’ve lamented and longed to run again, a new picture has emerged: Life as a race with hurdles and PR’s (personal records). Scripture says: “Since we are surrounded by such a great…

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    Listening: An Antidote to Polarization

    Understand this, my dear brothers and sisters! Let every person be quick to listen, slow to speak, slow to anger. James 1:19 (NET) I visited the National Museum of African American History & Culture last week—I and thousands of other people—and the experience overwhelmed me. The upper floors of the museum celebrate the significant contributions of African Americans to every sector of our culture. But the three-floor basement of the museum documents how the powerful have dominated the powerless in our country. For example, when enslaved people were finally freed in the U.S., compensation was given—but not to the slaves who had put in a lifetime of uncompensated labor. Instead, slave…

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    Three Responses to Charlottesville

    Like many of you, I watched in disbelief as white supremacists spouted bigotry, violence, and KKK rhetoric last weekend at a “Unite the Right” rally in Charlottesville, VA. For a brief summary of the weekend’s events and aftermath, see: https://www.nytimes.com/2017/08/13/us/charlottesville-virginia-overview.html I’ve noted two common responses to the persistent racial and political divide in our country: 1)     Us vs. Them. Whether it’s Democrat vs. Republican, black vs. white, black vs. blue, male vs. female, gays vs. straights, or Cowboys vs. Redskins, a “vs.” in the middle necessarily puts one group in complete opposition to another. Dividing ourselves into ideological categories is a natural way of expressing our identity, heritage, and values.…

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    Advent/Ferguson: 5 Ways to Respond to a Dead Black Teen, Riots and Looting

    “For hate is strong and mocks the song of peace on earth, good-will to men.”— Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day)   Should the Ferguson Protestors Be TIME magazine’s Person of the Year? As of this writing on the magazine’s website 77% say Yes, 23% say No. It’s one more media headline that hung like a dark cloud over my Thanksgiving holiday and the launch of Christmas. Maybe yours too.    I confess I have no idea what it’s like to be Black in America. (Maybe I’ve had just a tiny taste this past year as the prejudice against people who believe in a biblical view…