In light of the recent tragedy of the Charleston shootings, the discussion about the ethics concerning the Confederate flag, President Obama’s visit to Charleston, and the Supreme Court’s ruling for same-sex marriage, there are many things that could be touched on at this time, many avenues to walk down, and many conversations that could be opened. However, maybe it’s not so much the discussion that should take place, or acting on the urges to open fire at opposition, but rather take an authentic moment of real, raw self-reflection and speak your thoughts and words to yourself for the sake of clarity and maintaining a level head. Proverbs 4:7 says, “Wisdom is the principal thing: therefore, get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding,” (KJV).
Briefly, wisdom is having the power of right judgement, right speech, right thoughts, and right actions before God and man. Granted, there are varying levels of wisdom among individuals which brings different consequences in life- some good and some bad. Thus, your future depends on your degree of wisdom. In addition to gaining wisdom, we should seek out understanding. Understanding is linked with wisdom; however, it involves refining one’s discernment about situations, ideas or events transpiring, and grasping with what causes the wheel to turn, so to say. Without these principal things operating in one’s life, the ability to make sound judgments and produce fruitfulness not only in your life, but in the lives of others is in vain.
After many hours of browsing through the social media posts, tuning in to different news channels, and listening to conversations from friends, peers, and acquaintances over the weekend, it was quite evident that many people were still responding to and deeply shaken by the murders of nine innocent victims in the Emmanuel AME church. And, as events transpired, there continued to be adamant support from protesters for the removal of the Confederate flag from the grounds of the State House after the footage seen from the murderer’s pictures and depicted racist and obscene views towards the African American community. Last but not least, the Supreme Court’s decision in favor of same-sex marriage was for some people a long-held breath final exhaled, and for others it was a shaky breath inhaled. It seems that America is being sifted and people are discovering where the chips are falling.
So, what should a Christian think and how should we respond to all of these events? To what extent is it acceptable to advocate for truth and righteousness? Well, what would Jesus do? As followers of Jesus Christ, we are called to love God with all of our heart, soul, and mind, and secondly, our neighbors. We are called to spread Christ’s message to as many as will hear and accept God’s word. We are compelled to persuade others with the Truth through love. One cannot lead another where they have not been – so get Wisdom, and get Understanding before trying to make others “see” your perspective.