Righteousness and justice are the foundation of your throne; love and faithfulness go before you. (Psalms 89:14)
Recently, World Race: Gap Year hosted OneRace Movement (an Atlanta-based organization that exists to educate, empower and raise up a movement of racial reconciliation and revival) on campus for a week of teaching and activation.
Each day started with (socially-distanced) squad-led worship.
And every teaching was deeply rooted in scripture and prayer.
With humility as our approach, the week of teaching started with a history lesson, “because without knowing our history, it can be difficult to know what needs repairing, what needs reconciling” (Be the Bridge, Latasha Morrison). As OneRace declared, a broken theology led to a church that often chose comfort over constructive conflict. It’s important to consider, how does America’s history inform our present?
The Gospel is our hope for true reconciliation, racial justice, and revival.
Then, the Racers took part in a “privilege walk” to demonstrate the disparity of resources and opportunities. Though an imperfect activity with a profile of factors for fictitious characters, the point was made clearly: “there are factors I never thought of. I never thought about how much my parents and their circumstances affect me and my circumstances, because where you come from has an effect on your trajectory”, said a participant.
This acknowledgement begs the question: wherever we land, how do we work together to glorify God? How do we leverage where we are and what the Lord provided for the greater good of the Body?
Our faith compels us into action because we cannot divorce justice issues from the faith; we champion our cause in word and deed without compromising the Gospel. One participant said, “waging the fight for reconciliation in the church is crucial because if we can’t do it here in America, we certainly can’t do it overseas.” It doesn’t matter whether we are engaging in this work here on campus with Gap Year or overseas at a ministry base because justice and righteousness are embedded in our Kingdom DNA.
We are preparing and challenging Gap Year participants with this: how do we shift our lifestyles to do this here and now? How do we live like Jesus and “let justice roll on like a river, righteousness like a never-failing stream! (Amos 5:24)?”
For God so loved the WORLD, meaning the totality of existence, He sent His only Son. And Jesus hasn’t come to take sides; He has come to bring us onto His side and into His family. He wants to birth us into our full identity as citizens of Heaven. As members of the body of Christ, we are ambassadors of the Kingdom and agents of reconciliation and unity, over any and all cultural, social, political or economic identification or affiliation.
Join us in prayer: Jesus, you are the Author of justice, love and unity. Thank you for sitting with us in the uncomfortable work of uncovering our own bias in a way that produced more love, empathy, strength and courage. Help us to be reconciled to You (Colossians 1:19-20) then reconciled to each other (Galatians 3:28). Take up residence in our hearts as we look more like you every day.