Wanna know what a frog has to blog about? Read on!
|I am not black but yet I feel the desire to write about Black History Month. I've had a lot of downtimes lately and it has given me plenty of time to think and meditate. How does Black History month affect me, a white southern girl? Does it affect me?
My first experience with people who are black and with the spirit which many are faced with happened in my very own home when I was about eight years old. Mom's first husband was very racist and he taught my three oldest brothers to be as well. My youngest oldest brother is quite older than I am. By the time I was born, all my siblings had graduated high school and had moved out on their own. Mom raised me differently. Well, my oldest brother went through a divorce and moved back home with Mom and me.
As I said, I was about eight and my best friend from school was a little black girl named Kim. We were like peas in a pod and we always did everything together. As kids often do, I asked if she could spend the night. Mom agreed and when my friend showed up I could FEEL something was really wrong. There was a feeling in the house I'd never felt before. Mom and my brother were arguing but trying to keep it from me. I overheard my brother say he was not sleeping in the same house as "that" and I didn't know what he meant. Mom, in a tone I'd never heard her use with any of us reminded him it was HER house and SHE said who could stay or not stay. I remember my brother slammed out of the house and did not return until the next evening and he refused to speak to me. It was a few years later when I understood and learned the whole thing was because I'd brought a black girl into the house!
It made me think twice before I invited friends, any friends over to the house. I felt if my brothers didn't like someone cos they were black, then what else would make them not like someone? I was a social child and had many black friends but also Mexican friends and one Indian friend. For a long time, I was ashamed of my brothers and didn't want my friends to know they were my family.
Now, I have seen the power that love and God can do firsthand. It has been over 20 years since the day my brother slammed out of the house refusing to sleep under the roof as my friend. My brother has gone through a lot of transformation. He gave up drinking, drugs and married his AA sponsor. They bought a small fixer-upper smack in the middle of a predominantly black neighborhood. At first, my brother completely ignored the people around him. But slowly and softly God spoke to his heart. Slowly, my brother started seeing the youth. The kids hanging out on the streets. The bored and dejected look in their eyes. The hurt and rebellion. It is not easy for a person to change their beliefs and break from what they learned as a child.
My brother - MY brother - was touched by those around him and our whole family was quite shocked when we found out he had put up a basket ball net in his driveway and at first, he grudgingly let the kids come play....but they soon touch him and soon he was out there playing ball with them. MY brother!! Eventually, he put not one but two fridges in his garage...one he stocks with sodas and the other he stocks with pop cycles and ice creams and his yard and now home always has neighbor kids popping in and out. About a year or so ago I was sent a picture that nearly caused me to faint. There he was...MY Brother, arm slung around a tall, lanky black teen. Both had smiles ear to ear holding a basketball.
So, you see, I know...without doubt people can change. Hearts can change. At the very core, racism is a spirit of Hatred. The only way to break the hold of a spirit and to send it fleeing is through prayer and fasting and you can't beat it by might or power. You have to fight a spirit in the spiritual realm not the physical realm. The one and the only way to overcome this particular type of spirit is with LOVE. Not the fuzzy rainbows and unicorn mushy love. You need the all-consuming, never-ending, never-failing love of God.
YOU can ONLY change YOURSELF!! That is key and the most important. Stop worrying about everyone else. Stop worrying about all the hate groups and this side or that side...and focus on YOURSELF. What can YOU do in your OWN life to overcome the spirit of racism? It starts with just one changed heart. One changed life and it grows and grows. Take a deep, hard look into your own heart and life. Ask God to reveal any roots any hidden racism-type feelings you have and then work to rid yourself of them.
Until we love one another, unconditionally we can never learn to really love God.