Daily Devotions
 

Hello Good Shepherd!

During these summer months our Daily Devotions will continue with Good Shepherd’s Pastors along with Jen Jarman and Matthew Petersen each taking turns writing them week by week.  The topics and themes will be as varied as the Staff members themselves!  We hope you will check us out each day as you continue your daily Vine Time with God.  Open yourself to what God is saying to you through this writing, and pray that the Spirit will bring forth fruit from your life for the sake of the world. 

Also, as a way to encourage each other, use the comment box at the end of each day’s devotion to leave a thought, a prayer or a reflection of your own.  

Pastor Heidi Johns

Pastor Alice Connor

Daily Devotion

A white friend of mine recently said, “I had no idea that racism was still as bad as it is. And now I’ve realized that assumption, that not-knowing, is the problem.” This is part of what we mean when we use the word “privilege,” the ability to not even know how bad something is for another person because their experience is different than ours. A lot of folks think the word “privilege” is some sort of insult, a word that should make us feel shame or misery, but it’s really only a description of a way things are. The word simply means that we’re likely to underestimate how bad the problem is by default because we are never personally exposed to that problem. It’s not a moral judgment on how difficult our lives are.

We all struggle, we all feel pain, and, indeed, it’s a true fact that “all lives matter.” Of course they do—our Bible tells us that in the very first story. The problem is that some of our siblings in God’s Creation have lives that have not mattered to the rest of us because of the color of their skin. Some of our siblings have experienced extreme trauma--generational trauma, systemic trauma--because of the color of their skin. And the rest of us have the privilege of not experiencing that trauma. White folk are not by necessity bad or shameful because of this, but once we see it, once we see the history of subjugation and its continued existence, we are obligated to respond with kindness and support and work.

Yeah, I said work. Not in the “we an earn righteousness” way, of course, but as a loving response, as sanctification. And it’s hard. To read history from a black perspective, to notice in ourselves the ways we have not noticed or accidentally contributed to hurt—it’s a lot. But it’s so worthwhile! Seeing privilege, seeing racism for what it is an opportunity for us to do better, to change the world.

What have you noticed about yourself in recent weeks? What is your “next right thing” related to racism in America?

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