the beds we’ve made


Believe me; this is not an argument for reparations. I just thought that while some are talking about Politics, why not throw in some religion:
I looked down an email list to see who all was receiving it, and I felt safe in saying that most of the recipients are my Christian brothers and sisters, whose names I recognized. I knew also that there was at least one on this list who was not a professing believer in Christ. After reading their racist remarks and links to internet statistics on horrific black america (in complete hatred toward Obama and the thought of having to pay reparations), these are my thoughts. (The emails were only forwarded to me, so I didn’t respond to them personally.)
——
If you have ever considered yourselves rescued from something that so gripped you in a way that you could never have been released without God Himself coming after you, then I have a question about the good samaritan
Do you think he knew the statistics? Had he piddled over the letter of the law rather than the Spirit of the law, do you think he would have stopped to help the hurting man? Was he acting out of guilt – or was he acting out of responsibility toward mankind in view of the Spirit of the Law, in view of his own poorness of spirit? 
If we want a small government, dare say it is up to us to change things, the statistics, but also dare say that it would take compassion and a heaven’s worth of self-sacrifice to do it. Right or wrong, many will vote for Obama because he is compassionate. 
If it’s missing in the people, then a leader has the responsibility to explore ways to initiate change. This is also what our missionaries do. If we take global statistics and apply any sort of you-made-your-bed-now-lie-in-it kind of thinking, then we negate The Great Commission, then we profess to believe what the great American Deist, Benjamin Franklin, believed and penned: “God helps those who help themselves.” What a false statement.

When I was suffering, before I believed, had God made me lie in the bed I made, I would already be dead. So when people (the whole of Africa) seem to have been born into a sick-bed, a bed they probably didn’t make, one from which they couldn’t rise if they even knew how, we as The Redeemed must take on compassion and let it filter, yes, even our political perspective, unless we realize after a brutal beating, that we were forgiven an un-payable debt and yet couldn’t lift a hint of compassion toward those who needed a small hand-out (Matthew 18).   
The true injustice would be the white Christian making an argument that he had worked for everything that he has. The true injustice would be the white Christian pounding a fist for less government before sitting in his air conditioned house on a Sunday after church and a family lunch and grandma’s home-made apple pie. Small government doesn’t grant such blessings and neither does a large one.  

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amberhaines
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12 Comments

Amber
Reply August 1, 2008

Again, let me say that me and reparations, we don't see eye to eye, BUT you should have witnessed these emails. Not that I am any less wicked than their writers, but when a band publicly finds a common enemy in a skin color,(in Jesus' name, no less) it makes me want to run so far from its perspective that I'd sign up to pay whatever was asked of me so as not to associate with it.

I really thought things were different.

I'm starting to think that people don't read blogs for this kind of stuff. I guess it has overwhelmed me today.

Nicole
Reply August 1, 2008

AMEN. Well said.

Kimberly
Reply August 1, 2008

Good words, Amber.

Seth
Reply August 1, 2008

And i will go a step further and be more explicit, not only was the sick-bed in Africa not made by them (in large part) it was made by the colonizers who raped their women and pillaged their fields. Any parallels?

the hamster
Reply August 1, 2008

good stuff, amber. although it's been a hard day with seeing those statements and linking them to people who profess Christ ("... many on that day will say 'Lord, Lord, didn't we do the good stuff?' and I will say, "Depart from Me.'...."), i think you've had a rare day of feeling the Father's heart - not only towards the poor, but towards the prideful. bless you. bless you and bless you for exploring this and sharing it with others. the Father's heart is evident in your concerns. please keep us thinking.

The Baker
Reply August 1, 2008

the next few statements are from my heart as i consider you both dear friends.

after reading your statements this time, and for some reason this feels different, i have a really strong feeling that i am left with.

have you thought about and prayed about, recently i mean, what part you two as individuals and as a married unit are supposed to do about this. I hear africa in most of what both of you write these days, whether it is overt or subtle.
I can't help but feel like there is something in this not for you, but from you. With the people you know there now, and the talents both of you have...
Mission work is crazy in a way i do not know, yet people make it their lives...

I hear your hearts through these words, and if your heart is there....
perhaps i have said too much, but you are correct in what you both say.
I will only say that i think most people believe that change can happen, but that it would take many people of the same mind to work at the same time for the same reason to actually inact change.

Nobody really believes this is possible, and so many just don't try. I encourage you to think more on this together, because you are in the right place. People like you would try, will try. This is what others need.

Amber
Reply August 2, 2008

Thank you, Matt.

It's scary to feel like you're supposed to do something but to not know what that something is. It's scary to not have anything substantial to offer.

Craig and Cindy
Reply August 3, 2008

Amber, great post although I don't know what emails you're referring to. This may be a mite off topic, but if you haven't already, I implore you to read "There is No Me Without You" - in terms of Africa, Adoption, Ethiopia. Not only will it reaffirm what you and Seth told me you decided on undertaking, but it is full of eye-opening stuff and to boot it's an amazing piece of work.

Check it out online:
http://www.thereisnomewithoutyou.com/

Cindy

Amber
Reply August 3, 2008

Cindy, I will read it. Thank you.

The emails ares still going actually. One of Seth's oldest friends started sending Obama hate articles to her closest 30 friends, and Seth got on the list. It spiraled out of control. I really feel like it has changed my life.

Craig and Cindy
Reply August 3, 2008

Amber, wow something life changing from Obama hate emails? Hopefully we can chat about it - I will see you guys this Friday - SO excited.

Cindy

Sarah
Reply August 4, 2008

I'm thankful I didn't read the emails. Stuff like that makes me madder than a hornet. If anyone thinks they themselves or their race or their country are where they are b/c of something they've done, then they are sorely mistaken and are in for a rude awakening.
Reason # 5,395,097 why I rarely agree with the Religious Right.
And sometimes I hate that I have to love the people that email this trash out.

MEGAN
Reply August 6, 2008

Amber, just know, you rock!

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