I Matter Because He Matters
‘Black Lives Matter!’, ‘Black Lives Matter!’, ‘All Lives Matter!’, “All Lives Matter!’ were the shouts and cries of people rallying and standing on opposing sides of the streets of Justice Way and Relevancy Crossroads. I was walking through a DC neighborhood on the way home when these sights and sounds began to pierce the lenses of my senses like sunlight piercing through a rainy cloud.
As a young African-American male, I must confess that in the year 2016 I have struggled to find home, metaphorically speaking, while living in America. Home is the place for me where the foggy questions caressing my brain of- ‘Am I valued or being understood as a human being?’ ‘Does my life or existence matter to anyone?’ meets with the universal reassurance that who I am is just as relevant as what I am and what I am doing for others and myself at this present time.
I have come to the realization that my life is valuable or valued not because a White person says it is to be, not because a Black person says so, not even because a Hispanic or Asian person says so, but because Christ thought I mattered enough to die on the Cross for me even before I came into existence. Jeremiah 1:5 NKJV states that “Before I formed thee in the womb, I knew you …My self-worth does not come from another person’s validation of me- How can I as a sinner tell another sinner that I am above them in some form or another when we both are in need of God’s grace and forgiveness? All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God Romans 3:23 NKJV. But I am so thankful and grateful that He is in love with all of our lives and our precious life canvasses with all of its ups, downs, tribulations, and questionings are “inscribed on the palms of His hands”- Isaiah 49:16 NKJV Christ’s mantra for getting social missions accomplished was selflessness and humility, instead in this current saga of affairs, I have observed selfishness and pride rearing its ugly head which first had its genesis with the “enemy of the brethren”-the Devil.
The truth of the matter is that there is some degree of selfishness and pride shown in both movements and that my friends is not Christ like at all in my opinion. My BLM friends would say that black lives, specifically black males, have been shot down by police at a higher rate. I will leave that discussion or sermon to the “experts”. But how can you say BLM when in Chicago a pregnant African-American female was stabbed to death as all people watched for something not even related to racism? Where are the mentorship and after school programs that are created and funded by BLM to help keep young kids away from gang violence? My All Lives Matter friends will say that all lives matter yet don’t care if another black life is shot down in the street until it is one of their family members. They too assert that this issue is not a “black and white thing” as they pass by another black man gunned down in the streets to head to their gated houses. If ALM then where are they when accountability to lobby police unions to a higher and uniform standard of force and justice for all peoples including African Americans? Where is the ALM people for the alleged gunman whether its police related or not? After all, Christ died for that person too and they might need healing, restoration, and forgiveness too. Where are the ALM people at for the Syrian conflict or Nigerian conflicts?
The media has played an intricate and mind numbing role also in this issue by desensitizing the masses of people to gun violence and violence in all of its forms against humanity in general. They show the shooting footage of these events in graphical detail of men lying in the streets without medical attention or sheets covered over them and people are going to react to that. It’s almost scary to think that if another person was to get shot the first thing someone might do is record and post it to Facebook or other social media instead of getting medical help. It seems that the only thing that “matters” to some of these news organizations are ratings, sensationalism, and profits from a story.
The question for today is this- Does Christ and His sacrifice made on your behalf matter today in your life? In your family life? In your community’s life? In your home, work, school, and recreational life? If we (myself included) have answered this question in the affirmative, then it will be evident to those in the world around us by the way we respect, love, and affirm those not like us. Their concerns, wishes, hopes, fears, and prayers will matter to us in words and in actions to build up our communities physically, mentally, emotionally, and most importantly spiritually. Does your life matter? Yes, it does! Does my life matter? Yes, it matters because He matters in my life and is coming back for me and everyone else who believes in Him to take us to a world where sin and its horrific effects will not matter anymore in the New Earth.