My heart goes out to the families affected by recent events.

Racism is real. Just as real as slavery, and human and sex trafficking–modern day oppression…

I think this is a really good time to ask the question Joe (our local church pastor) asked on Sunday. “Are we living our lives to create a better life, or a better world?” From my vantage point, more people, including Americans, have been choosing the better life. Whenever we care more about ourselves then those around us—then we have been choosing selfishly.

Everyday we we make small and big decisions regarding what we believe and what we value, regarding ourselves and others. All our decisions add up and shape who we are.

I believe our nation is where it is, because as a collective, we have been choosing “us vs. them”—ourselves verses everyone else. When we value our own comforts more then what God values-the orphan, the widow, the captive, the weak and oppressed-then eventually, our actions will catch up to us. God never pushes Himself on us, but He does desire we choose His way over our own. If we choose to go our own way, then He will continue to love us—all the same—but His values and His love will not be evident because He will leave us to our own ways.

Each day, we get to decide if it is really worth waking up and claiming our day for just ourselves, or also for those around us, locally and globally. This doesn’t mean we all leave our day jobs, however, it does mean that we don’t just look inward. For those of us that desire cultural change, we must also look upward (to God’s truth) and outward (to what is going on around us). We take notice of where we are, and we lead from there.

“… ‘If you do away with the yoke of oppression, with the pointing finger and malicious talk, and if you would spend yourselves in behalf of the hungry and satisfy the needs of the oppressed, then your light will rise in the darkness, and your night will become like the noonday.’” – Isaiah 58:9

We have to do more then talk about what oppression looks like, and who is to blame. If we all have been the center of our own attention, then maybe there are more at fault then those who make the news… Change will come when we take selfless action to do away with the oppression.

Sadly, the positive actions toward change will not heal the recently broken hearts. but prayerfully, will play a role in the healing process that God desires to play in their lives, and in our own.