I feel like a broken record.
Like I have one track and I just keep screaming it out.
Expect this isn’t one of the hits. Something we want on repeat all day every day. It’s the track we skip. Not a secret track for those who remember them, tucked away on a CD. No this it’s one of those songs we hear and say “it’s just not for me” and move.
We go back to the old hits; culture war, standing for truth, the bible says, we need more of a heart of worship, live your best life, name it and claim it, etc.
And maybe it’s some of the old adage, if all you have is a hammer everything looks like a nail. Maybe I’m wandering around the world seeing everything as nails, trying to hammer screws and bolts.
But I don’t apologize for that.
I could not be more ok with it in this instance.
Our desire to maintain our privilege is out of control. Our inability to see the difference between the erosion of privilege and persecution is out of control. Our desire to maintain power in our society is out of control. Our desire to sustain oppression with every means at our disposal is out of control.
We are out of control.
I’m at a bit of a loss to be honest. I feel paralyzed and trapped. Like a puzzle that’s missing pieces I have no idea how to move forward.
I see Christians arguing over Starbucks cups.
I see Christians demanding their right to make a spectacle of their prayer.
I see Christians choosing Merry Christmas as the hill to die on not matter who it alienates.
I see Christians defending an all white conference saying it’s the fault of the people of colour that their voices won’t be heard.
I see Christians choosing a political party over Jesus.
I see Christians calling for violence as the solution to communities we don’t understand.
I see Christians calling those seeking justice to stop acting and return to their place.
I see Christians do all they can to leverage every last bit of power they have, because they are Christian, straight and white, to make sure no one else gets what they were given by birth.
And I just don’t know what to do. It literally brings me to tears.
We have become these arbiters of hate and judgment, not wells of unending grace and hope. Our collective voice used to bring division not unity. To stir up controversy and create martyrs out of the ether.
The fervor of the Christian voices needs to be in our commitment to the marginalized, not the maintenance of our privilege and power. The full force of the church needs to be in the support of those we have far too long oppressed. To long pushed out and feared. To long judged.
We need to listen to the voices we’ve oppressed. We need to hear the voices we’ve silenced. It’s not giving voice to the voiceless, they always had a voice we just muzzled it. Our power let us push those voices to the margins. We tried our best to silence them, to maintain our position of power.
But thank God, He wouldn’t let us.
Gods power is on full display when the force of his church tries to silence hope, grace and love and he says no. When voices we’ve long forgotten and oppressed break through.
But we don’t have ears to listen.
Our hearts are hard.
Our power to corrupting.
Our privilege to alluring.
We have too much to give up to go back to God now. We can’t give it all up for God now.
We’ve been tricked, complicit. Our outrage and grief over what we might lose, rarely over all those we keep hurting.
Because we built the system, we wrote the laws, we refuse to listen.
It’s our heritage and our legacy.
Residential schools are blood on my hands. The oppression of the poor my inheritance. It’s our voice and our actions that have driven hordes from the church, from God.
We built the stigma and I sustain it.
“The privileged want relationship, the oppressed want justice” (Cheryl Talley).
But there will be no justice. There will be no hope. Not as long as we desire our privilege more than justice for the horrors we created.