An open letter to Pastors on the Racial Divide.

Pastors,

Sometimes there are transformative moments in culture and current events that are so impactful and so important that I hesitate to write on such things, not for fear of adding to the noise but out of patiently awaiting to see what will shake out. There is a lot of trepidation in Christendom right now about being on the “wrong side of history.” As if history was some sort of judge, when in fact the statement is made with the assumption that someone is on the wrong side of morality. This is also not something I am overly concerned with as we are not beholding to history, history is beholding to us.

However I think it is now the proper time and place for me to enter the ring of our race relations in this country. And when I say our, I mean white people. I can not speak for other ethnicities as I have never been one but what I can say is that we have a serious problem.

I also do not believe that this is a problem that can be solved with force, coercion, laws, statutes or legislation. We have tried all of those things and while they are important to our society they are not the cure anymore than chicken soup is the cure for the common cold. Sure it may help more than it hurts, but we want full and total healing in our land and we are all out of sick days.

Of course I am a Christian so I believe (rather supernaturally) that Jesus is the answer. But before we prescribe Jesus as the answer the Church needs to take a good hard look in the mirror and recognize that we are very much a part of this problem.

See, if the police in Ferguson had been worshiping with the very people they were called to serve and protect, the events of that place would have been very different. It is difficult to hate someone you worship with in Church every Sunday.

The segregation of our congregation is leading to our annihilation.

It is the very prayer and heart of Jesus that we would all be “one” as He is one with the Father. We can not do this if we continue to place racial barriers up around our people and call it the Church. How can we be a complete body if we do not represent, reflect and recognize the very people in our immediate surroundings?

There are of course exceptions do to geographical location, but for the most part all black, all white, and all hispanic types of Churches are not healthy.

Pastors, I believe we must unite under this cause which is the very cause of Christ in a tangible and real way. I have a constant vision of Pastors from all over the country, from all different denomination of all different color coming to meet, to pray for our Churches to be places that look more like the Kingdom of God. I have a vision of us meeting together, breaking bread, and talking of all that we can do to see our communities heal the racial divide that is of the devil himself.

I don’t know where to begin, I really don’t.

I do know that without God’s strength we can do nothing, but without our effort we will do nothing.

-In Christ,

Ben Bowman

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