The unjust death of George Floyd calls the world to look in the mirror and see what is truly in our minds and hearts concerning the varieties, aspects, perspectives, and challenges of all people created by God. We are all human beings with different skinsuits, but we all have blood coursing through our veins. We all have the freedom and power to choose what we think, believe, say, and how we act toward one another. However, these privileges can be misguided and twisted, resulting in discrimination and racism.
What Has Created Such Discrimination and Racism?
To get us to the same understanding of discrimination and racism, let’s look at their definitions.
- Discrimination is the unjust or prejudicial treatment of different categories of people or things, especially on the grounds of race, age, or sex.
- Racism is prejudice, discrimination, or antagonism directed against a person or people based on their membership in a particular racial or ethnic group, typically one that is a minority or marginalized.
These definitions indicate that at some point, a person learns or chooses to believe that not everyone is equal. This person also believes that it is normal or okay to treat another person, who is different from them, disrespectfully and with less value. Because we live in a broken world and we are not born with the pure love, wisdom, understanding, grace, and mercy of Jesus Christ, we are unaware that we form devaluing beliefs for many years.
We grow up believing certain words and actions are okay, which is where we learn discrimination, racism, and abusive words and behaviors. What we learn and choose to believe is what drives our thoughts, moral beliefs, words, and actions. Our beliefs direct us in one of two ways.
- Our beliefs can make us racist, full of discriminations, and abusive toward anyone different. We learned and accepted these destructive beliefs are normal and okay from our life experiences.
- Our beliefs can make us the perfect victim of abuse. We learned to accept disrespectful treatment as normal or all that we deserve because of our life experiences.
We will live our life according to who we believe we are or the identity and value we place on ourselves and other people. What we believe determines how we will treat others and how we will let others treat us. Our destructive beliefs are how the enemy sets us up to destroy one another. Our destructive beliefs and actions are the opposite of Christ’s loving example he showed us when he lived on the earth.
Christ’s Followers are Instructed to Love Others
When you choose to be a disciple of Jesus (to be his heart, character, love, and presence), you must know his heart, his unconditional love, and his equality of all people. Jesus died and rose from the dead to give every person the opportunity to be saved from sin and death, despite our differences. Respecting and treating everyone as a priceless masterpiece does not mean you have to conform to their perspectives and beliefs. It means you are willing to look at them and listen to a different view, traditions, and way of life that can bring variety and even new knowledge and understanding to yours.
Jesus focused on loving people where they were and who they were as he shared his loving hope and gospel. He asked people questions and let them choose without trying to change their minds or forcing them to change. Jesus knew that once nonbelievers received him and truly committed to following his heart and ways, they would work together. As Christ’s disciples work with Jesus, he helps them transform their minds, hearts, attitudes, words, and actions into his loving ways and standards.
The committed disciples of Jesus live out the two greatest commandments. “Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself.” (Matt 22:37-39, NIV)
When Christ’s disciples place Jesus as the focus and loving standard for our attitudes, words, and actions, there is no room for the unrighteous and unjust ways of discrimination and racism. If you are a disciple of Jesus Christ, it is time to love others as he first loved you. It’s time to be Christ’s love that the world needs.
Break the Cycle of Discrimination and Racism
The first step to any change is the awareness that something is not right in the eyes of God; it is disrespectful and dishonoring. In your heart, you know these words or acts would not come from Jesus. Therefore, they must not come from you because Christ lives in you. Many Christ-followers have not been aware of their discriminations or racism until now. However, now that you are aware, you will need to break your learned cycles.
To break the learned cycles of discrimination and racism, you must identify and own them. Ask Jesus to reveal any discrimination or racism that you may have learned or developed from your life experiences. Read more about the phrases and signs of discrimination and racism to help you identify them. Next, Christ’s disciples must study God’s truth. Ask him to lead you to verses to help you transform your mind, heart, attitudes, words, and actions to be more like Christ’s exceptional love.
When you study the Bible and Christ’s life, duplicate his loving care, encouragement, generosity, and kindness to everyone you meet during your day. Because Jesus lives in all of his believers, we must put who he is into practice, which naturally eliminates all discrimination and racism. Work with Jesus and let him set you free from these destructive ways.
Christ’s Disciples are Called to Lead the Way
The early disciples of Christ were identified by their love, care, and generosity to all people. The same must be true of his disciples today. No excuse or rationale can ever make discrimination or racism a part of God’s or Christ’s heart, character, or will.
We all have sinned. The sin of one or a few people doesn’t make everyone in that similar group the same. If that were true, being all sinners, there would be no salvation or hope for anyone. If you have discovered discrimination or racism in your mind or heart, repent, and work with Jesus to retrain your treatment of people.
Without creating and following Christ’s standards to love and treat people, you will fall into your old racism and discrimination by default. Jesus can’t wait to help us be more like him and to show others his love. Let’s take his hand and love like Christ and eliminate discrimination and racism now!
“So I give you now a new commandment: Love each other just as much as I have loved you. For when you demonstrate the same love I have for you by loving one another, everyone will know that you’re my true followers.” (John 13:34-45, TPT)
I want to leave you with a link to an encouraging song by Mandisa, We All Bleed the Same.
Ready to discover and eliminate the lies you believe about true love, check out my new book coming soon at Quest for Exceptional Love Book Launch Announcement.