Social problems are nothing new in our society. Urban neighborhoods are known for things such as crime and poverty. Black on black crime has been prevalent for years. Unemployment, the breakdown of family structures, addictions, and a multitude of other issues can lead to despair and hopelessness. The resulting frustration can bubble just below the surface for years. Then, an “opportunity” presents itself to release the frustration and anger in some dramatic ways. The result is chaos and further fragmentation.
The facts of the original incident in Ferguson are still coming to light and we would do well to be informed before passing judgment in either direction. However, I think these last ten days have given Christians something to think about. Are we isolating ourselves from the problems of the world? Do we look at the issues of Iraq, Israel, and the Ukraine as something “over there” and there is little I can do? Do we look at the issues a little closer to home in Ferguson, Missouri and breathe a sigh of relief that it isn’t in my neighborhood?
Quite simply, how are we bringing the love of Christ to our own communities? How do we respond to the needs of the poor and those who are hurting—regardless of their race or religion? Is there consistency between the faith we profess and the way we live our daily lives? Each one of us is either going to be part of the solution or part of the problem. Developing attitudes of apathy and complacency will not serve us well in the long run. Being content with the status quo can result in devastating consequences.
Bottom line for today--Are we building up the Kingdom of God through our “witness of faith, the confidence of hope, and the practice of love?”