This #FanGirlFriday is a little different than the others. Most Fridays, I'm sharing a product, a company, a brand or another entity that I'm fond of. Last night when I want to bed, I thought today would be about one of those kinds of things. Turns out, I'll save that for another Friday.
Today, I am a fan of PEACE. I am a fan of LOVE. I am a fan of COMMUNITY. I am a fan of FRIENDSHIP. I am a fan of FAMILY. I am a fan of JESUS CHRIST.
On Monday, we celebrated Independence Day and Freedom and our Country. The next day, a man was killed by police in Baton Rouge. The day after that, another man was killed by police in Minneapolis. The day after that, at a peaceful protest, five police officers were killed and seven other officers and two civilians were wounded by snipers in Dallas. None of this seems like Independence or Freedom to me.
I can't stop thinking about this. I listened to a little radio, but I cannot watch television coverage. It makes my heart hurt and makes me sick to my stomach. I keep thinking about the families of all the people involved, and how easy it will be for them to let hatred creep into their hearts. Hatred for the police. Hatred for the shooter(s) in Dallas. Hatred for one another. Hatred for blacks. Hatred for whites. Hatred for those who are different, in whatever way. Hate. Hate. Hate.
We live in the greatest country in the world, yet we are still a nation divided. We're divided along political lines, socio-economic lines, ethnicity lines. All the strides toward narrowing that division we thought we might have been making over the past few decades are really just a drop in the bucket. We don't have segregated bathrooms, and we don't have different water fountains, and anyone can sit where they want to on the bus. But we also don't have unity, and we don't have common ground, and we don't have peace. It seems we are no closer to being a nation united today than we were fifty years ago. Division brings fear. Fear brings hatred. Hatred brings death.
I know people who are afraid for their children right now. People who are afraid that their black sons and daughters will be targeted solely because of the color of their skin. My heart breaks for those parents.
I know people who are afraid for their children right now. People who are afraid that their police officer sons and daughters will be targeted solely because of their chosen profession. My heart breaks for those parents.
Right now, I am afraid of the chaos and anarchy and lawlessness that seems to be looming around every corner. I am afraid for all our children. My heart breaks for us all. But, I will not allow that fear to take over and fill my broken heart with hate.
To stop the hate, we must stop the fear. To stop the fear, we must stop preaching division and start preaching love. And, I'm not talking about religion. Religion can make people crazy. We see that every day with those who preach hate and intolerance, and with those who seek to destroy us. I'm talking about following Jesus, and preaching and teaching love. Followers of Jesus love one another, because Jesus taught us love. Jesus said more than once that we are to love one another. It is a commandment second only to loving God with all your heart, soul and mind. It's pretty important. When we love with our whole heart and with our soul, there is no room for hate. I wish you love.