There are numerous instances in my life where things (an event, musical piece, relationship, school paper, work situation, a basketball game) seem to be spinning of out control. Chalk it up to things like unknown variables, high emotions and tempers, fears or concerns, or multiple voices.
Whatever it is, I feel like I’m spinning. Usually, it takes a shift in perspective, a friend, or colleague to help me get back to a place of truth and wholeness; a mindset and heart posture that help me create a great musical moment or a word of forgiveness. Or maybe a missed free throw to win the game but a redemptive 3-pointer made in overtime because of a team members’ encouragement.
My heart and mind have been spinning this week because of what’s happening in our country. To see a wave of protests calling out for change is historical.
Talking to friends and others about racial issues and justice seem like topics we shouldn’t have to defend. But here we are trying to explain why a prophetic phrase like #blacklivesmatter is part of the Gospel story, not a political one.
Today’s liturgical readings mention the God who upholds the cause of the oppressed, sets prisoners free, and gives sight to the blind. This is where we get our theology to uphold justice and come alongside a group of people who are experiencing suffering.
All four passages (Job 38:1-11,42:1-5, Revelation 19:4-16, John 1:29-34, Psalm 146, 147) have a recurring theme which John the Revelator summaries quite well:
“On his robe and on his thigh he has a name inscribed, ‘King of kings and Lord of lords’.”
The truth that Our God Reigns has been the shift in spirituality this week. When I’ve listened to a black friend share his bewilderment and pain, or when I’ve talked to an employee about a family member having cancer, or praying for an executive to lead an initiative, some of it can leave me spinning.
But when Christina and I are talking and sharing our laments, we were given the reminder that “OUR GOD REIGNS”.
Why does that change things for us?Why does it matter that we believe and confess something that seems obvious or trivial to some?What kind of difference does it make that we say, trust, and surrender to these words and reality?
Because the Story of God is the main narrative that frames how we engage injustice, racism, marriage woes, corporate culture, parenting, and my own sins and hopes.
We can share our protests to God and as Christ Followers, this is what we do! We cry out to the God who reigns with justice. To the God who liberates the oppressed and the oppressor. We can cry out to God and confess that we are in need of a power greater than ours.
For as much as we protest and do the work of justice in public and civil ways, we are just as much crying out for God to reign. Because when God reigns, there is justice, peace, and joy.