Good folks can get ugly when they take to social media to talk about race. Current politics are charged and ready to explode when it comes to issues of race, color, and discrimination. Some say race will be THE issue of the 2020 election. This powder keg puts Democrats and Republicans at odds, and a dividing wall between good friends can quickly be erected. Race-baiting and click bait about race keep many of us on a non-relational edge. Our opinions about this issue can carry more weight than our hearts for others.

But this cannot be so in Jesus’s Church. The problem is… it has been so. Only 13% of American churches are multiethnic, which means that at least 20% of their congregation is ethnically diverse. This means most white-majority churches choose to remain silent and keep the waters unstirred.

The waters are already stirred. The Church is the only answer.

When people hurt, the Church needs to be the Church. When the past carries present fears and anguish, the Church needs to be the Church. People are hurting. People have fears and great anguish. It’s time to be the Church.

Four hundred years ago, the first enslaved people touched the North American continent. It’s a part of our storied and shared history we need to tell. As Jesus’s Church, it’s a story we should lament and turn (repent) from because the Church failed to rise up as a lover of all souls. Slavery may not have been our fault, but it remains our responsibility to love and understand those who remain hurt and marginalized by its generational effects. The race story is one we need to change because the Gospel has so completely changed us.

Cumberland, we have been blessed and chosen to struggle with all of this. God’s grace has caused our diversity, and His grace will enable our unity. If you’re at Cumberland, God must want you to be engaged in this Gospel fight to love ALL His children. What an incredible privilege to be in a church that is well-positioned to change the story and love better.

This Sunday, as we gather at 9:00 & 11:00 a.m., we’re going to know the story, own the story, and change the story by God’s grace. This will be an exceptional day. This will be a day of remembrance. Let Jesus’s Church BE the Church and tear down any wall that divides – for the glory of the Church and the fame of Jesus. Amen.

See you Sunday.


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