A Word Of Encouragement:
HOLD THE HOPE
A Word Of Encouragement:
HOLD THE HOPE
Accountability in Action
I’m the first to say I have no clue about what to do when everything needs to be done. I’ve experienced both the protests that are organized and the ones that aren’t. Here’s the difference: Accountability.
And, it makes me think:
Leaders in this country lack accountability.
Leaders in this city lack accountability.
Leaders in our communities lack accountability.
Leaders in our businesses lack accountability.
The whole world is an an uproar because we are lacking accountability.
Cops can murder black people on camera and not be held accountable because of loop holes in laws that are supposed to be used to hold people accountable. The criminal justice system is centered and boosted around mass incarceration and the criminalization of black bodies because there are loop holes in our legal system that make one thing and exceptional offense for white folks and a death sentence for black folks. A “justice” system that is supposed to be used to hold people accountable, has turned into a “just us” system.
An education system that has let money determine who is worthy of quality education has gone unchecked for years because, ultimately, leaders have not been held accountable. Generational poverty has literally gotten worse and worse as the years go along, because the white insurance underwriters use redlining to keep black people from land acquisition by denying them or giving them significantly higher interest rates on home and business loans because they lack accountability.
We’re three months out from #BreonnaTaylor being murdered because those four bastard cops had a #noknockwarrant, obtained through false information and trumped up lies, and have gotten away with it so far, because they have not been held accountable.
That’s what systemic oppression looks like: A lack of accountability.
These are what these protest/resistance approaches are about: Accountability.
So here’s my response to said black men yelling, “Handing out hot dogs and feeding people haven’t gotten us anywhere.”
We need to do things that encourage sustainability. That’s why people are feeding people in the square. That’s why we have people riding in cars and at rest stations during those nightly marches with water and food. We need to have systems that help people keep their foot on the gas because we are fighting for systemic accountability. We are fighting for systemic change. We are fighting for systemic overhaul. The lack of accountability in these systems have created the very systems keeping us oppressed.
Black men, hold black men accountable.
Black women, hold Black women accountable.
White people, hold white people accountable.
Churches, hold other churches accountable.
Organizers, hold other organizers accountable.
Politicians, hold other politicians accountable.
In the last 20 days, with God’s strength:
I’ve grilled hot dogs and hamburgers.
I’ve done groceries drives and food support.
I’ve been tear gassed and inhaled pepper bullets.
I’ve been overwhelmed by the sound of flash bombs and sirens.
I’ve prayed and sang in the parking lot of the grocery store.
I’ve preached mini sermons to folks who needed to be uplifted.
I’ve participated in marches and pray walks.
I’ve cussed and cried, sometimes at the same time.
I’ve prayed for and over people in the middle of the protest.
I’ve been a DJ for young folks who wanted to lament and celebrate Breonna’s life.
I’ve served food in retreat tents.
I’ve became a founding member of the Justice and Freedom Coalition.
I’ve pivoted from studying theology, to studying police tactics and reform.
I’ve poured milk in the eyes of those who were tear gassed.
I’ve stood toe to toe with policemen in riot gear.
I’ve stood between protestors and policemen.
All these things because with God’s grace, and through God’s strength, I’m doing whatever needs to be done to ensure accountability is achieved. Only then will begin to create a just world!
This revolution will be televised. This will be the new normal. No one person goes unchecked. No one person's agenda over the greater goal. Accountability, fam! Accountability in action.
A Word Of Encouragement:
HOLD THE HOPE
You Will Not Die Here
This part of your life has literally felt like death. You cannot seem to get your head above water. It’s been hard to get out of bed and even find the energy or strength to complete daily activities. The pressure of life has taken its toll and you can’t seem to dig yourself out of darkness. You are exhausted as you smile publicly and fall apart privately. You feel defeated under the weight of life. You watch as people who hurt you move on while you are left picking up the pieces. You’ve contemplated giving up more times than people would ever guess. No one has asked what’s going on, and the ones who know peripherally say, “you’ll be fine.” To be honest, you’re not okay and you haven’t found the courage to tell a soul. The usual pick-me-ups aren’t helping. You’ve prayed, and God hasn’t responded; you’ve cried yourself to sleep and the tears haven’t felt healing. You’ve showed up to church, shouted, left and before you get home the weight of life showed back up. You’ve tried every sleeping measure possible— from NyQuil to alcohol and still….nothing.
If this is you, allow me to tell you that this current state will not be the end of you. You have purpose, and what’s happening on the inside is going to unlock something far greater than you have previously imagined. When someone codes in the hospital, the most painful part of revival is CPR and the aftermath. During the process of CPR, your chest is put under tons of pressure- so much so that ribs are cracked and bruised. Your body takes a beating like no other and after you’ve been resuscitated, you must spend time on the ventilator before you are released to breathe on your own. Contrary to what folks think, the process of CPR is painful and can sometimes last for hours. But unless you have signed a DNR, they will continue pushing, pounding, shocking your system, and breathing life into you until the doctor calls it quits or until there is a pulse again (life). What appeared to be the death of you was only a strategic move. Because God is the doctor and He’s not stopping until He feels life re-enter your dreams.
Be advised though, after CPR has been successfully performed and signs of life are present, the pain of the process from death to life is felt while you’re on the ventilator. You feel the cracked ribs and the struggle just to breathe through it at times will feel like you’re suffocating from within. This is when doctors say most patients give up because it is too painful. This is also why they encourage people in recovery to have family present who can hold the hope for them, remind them that this part of the process is temporary, and healing is on the other side if they can just stand to breathe through the pain.
Be encouraged in this— the ventilator is the last step of the resuscitation process. After that, it’s RELEASE. You will feel the pain of CPR while in recovery, but you are about to feel the victory of release if you can hold on. And you won’t feel the same after resuscitated because your body doesn’t go back to its previous state. We have to be okay not being the same because we are not called to perfection; we are called to be wounded healers.
But, I promise you this: YOU WILL NOT DIE HERE.
Today, God help me to find the courage to breathe through the pain and gain the strength in those moments where it is too painful to live. Help me to hold on to this hope: that You are calling the shots and even when it doesn’t feel good, I can trust Your process. God, give me the strength to trust the reason You resuscitated me. Help me to know I still have purpose here. Help me to keep breathing when it hurts, when it doesn’t feel good, when I want to quit. Remind me, God, that even though it isn't easy, it will be worth it.
Hold your Hope-