We are missing the mark with reparations
Let me start by saying that I am soberly aware of the profoundly heavy, gut-wrenching, heart-breaking, and polarizing nature of this topic. And even in stating this, I am confident that my awareness and appreciation for the veracity, agony, complexity of this issue, and what it invokes, is sorely lacking and belies its due diligence.
Nevertheless, I feel compelled to speak on this weighty matter, after having my conscience pricked, and wrestling with it for many months. As a man, I often try to seek God’s heart on matters big and small; albeit, not always with success. I try to put aside my own fallible and faulty fleshly unctions and self-righteous indignations that I truly have no legitimate claim to, and rise above the weeds of opinions of others for less than altruistic purposes.
It’s not easy, but it is necessary toward the needed healing, restoration, and reconciliation that is, what I believe, the remedy for this atrocity that has never been properly acknowledged. This is the real root of the issue: the opening of one of the most heinous and hideous doors in the history of our great nation (and yes, this is a great nation) that has never been shut. We need to address the root issue which opened this door, so that we can properly close this shameful and lingering chapter that has left a great stain and an open self-inflicted wound on this majestic country. Reparations are merely a symptom with which to woefully and inadequately apply a band aid on something so deep and stench-filled.
To recommend, subscribe to, and support reparations is to dismiss, dilute, cheapen, and silence the blood of those, denigrated and destroyed by these carnages, that cries out from the soil of this nation’s past. These precious sons and daughters, many of whom were brought here against their will, taken captive, and savagely and mercilessly abused and slaughtered by this nation’s ancestors, deserve better. These previous sons and daughters, their sons and daughters, and their seed deserve better than a band aid.
Please understand that I love my country, this One Great Nation Under God. I do and will forever stand for the flag, and kneel for the cross. This, in my opinion, is the greatest nation on earth, and I count myself blessed to live here. Because I think so highly of our great nation, we have an even greater responsibility to right this wrong that has never been dealt with at its core—the root. I am not here to pass blame, as blame-naming is one of the great strategies of the enemy to keep a people, or a nation, from truly stepping into the healing, restoration, and reconciliation needed to be applied for something so seemingly insurmountable as slavery.
This being said, we must acknowledge and accept responsibility that, while this nation was being birthed, its birthing process was contaminated, and the birth defect that resulted and still remains has never been properly dealt with; therefore, it remains unhealed and unfortunately intact.
As a man of God, I try to seek wisdom and direction in His infallible, immutable, sovereign, healing, restoring, and grace-filled Word: “If my people, which are called by My name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land” (2 Chronicles 2:14). This is what I believe we must do, as a people, as a nation, to address the root issue, the root cause of this devastating injustice, to close and heal this wound, this birth defect, and to shut and seal the doors permanently that were opened way back when.
And it must come from the head, the President of the United States. I am not singling out any one president. I have been hopeful for years throughout the succession of US Presidents from either party, for one to stand up during his or her term and make a public acknowledgement, as the highest representative of this nation, to ask forgiveness for this grievous wrong-doing. To truly call a day for this nation to repent so that this wound can be healed, and this door properly closed. And to publicly find a proper representation of living ancestors of slaves, who are willing to forgive on behalf of their ancestors, those who committed these vicious acts of barbarism and sin against them. The president needs to stand in the gap to seek such forgiveness; and these precious souls need to stand in the gap and to forgive what we have done as a nation—past and present.
And then a bipartisan Congress must act, ratifying a day: a national day of repentance to commence each year so we can look back and remember, not the sins of our fathers; but instead, the day that our president stood up, asked for, and received forgiveness on behalf of a nation, on behalf of its citizens (past, present, and future) from the gracious heart of those trodden underfoot in unimaginable ways, which brought the Healing Hand of God to rain down the Balm of Gilead. To record such a great day that our forgiven nation was finally reconciled to its past, restored to its future, set free, and able to move forward anew; no longer mired with this lingering stench or foul residue, stepping into her glorious destiny, with nothing missing, nothing lacking, and no sorrow added.
May God bless us all, and may God continue to bless these great United States of America.
With warmest regards,
(Photo credit: R Wellen Photography on Shutterstock)