Last week, I returned to work and during that time we have prepared for when the school partially re-opens. I am not going to lie, it was one strange, hard week. Everything is upside down and the new systems in place to ensure social distancing is comepletely alien to how schools actually function.
I am also a parent and like many parents facing the desicion to send my children back to school has been a tough one. It has been made tougher because, my youngest who is in year 1 can go back but my eldest who is in year 3, cannot. You can imagine the tension this has caused.
We are still in the midst of a pandemic and everyone is trying their up-most to make the best possible decisions they possibly can with the information they have got.
We are also in a state of great change with the protests across the world that are proclaiming Black Lives Matter. I have had the honour and privilege to be interviewed by the leaders of my church on this painful moment in history.
However, before I go into that I want to talk about hope. I have realised that hope isn’t passive it is active. It requires active participation. It means marching, it includes protesting and it includes the hard conversations that need to take place. As I was walking to work one morning, I was listening to worship music and Steffany Gretzinger’s song, Tell Me The Truth started to play. This song really touched my heart, particularly the lyric: ‘tell me the truth, without the self-protection, love can mend what’s broken, in me and you.’
We cannot deny that there are many broken people everywhere and society has fractured and exposed many ugly things. However, this song reminded me of hope. Love can mend what is broken, there are many people who questioning and acknowledging the pain and struggle of others in a great many ways. It was in this that Simon and Sarah Larkin asked me to take part in our online church service to help bring this discussion to our church. I have never been interviewed before like this and certainly not in public on such a personal matter. To listen to the interview click on this link.
I found it hard to articulate the thoughts and feelings that have been swirling around in me since the death of George Floyd, but also my whole life. It was a new experience to speak to my church on this and offer suggestions on how the journey could be done together as well as individually. There is no absolute way through this, no concrete path to follow and the truth is, is that it may take generations for racism to truly be mostly gone from out societies.
Romans 8:23-25 says that hope that is seen is not hope.
25 But if we hope for what we do not see, we eagerly wait for it with perseverance. (NKJV)
Now I know that Paul is directly talking to the early church and to us about the future hope we have in Jesus. However, it helps me to persevere in hope right now that we can and are able to love each more deeply. To be a part of the process of healing needed to take place in our communities, churches and nations to bring out the much needed change that will enrich everyone’s lives.