Chloe has hazel eyes. And because she is Chloe, she just abandoned her class for the swings and some animal crackers.
Of course, the rest of the class was outraged. My hazel eyed girl quickly realized that without her brown eyed friends on the playground, there was no one to push her on the swing or to chase her around the park. And eating snack without her blue eyed pals was pretty lonely.
After school she said, "Mommy, those were bad rules. I am glad those did not last."
It was, perhaps, the simplest and most profound explanation of the work of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Chloe's class began to understand how unfair and unjust the world was--and in many ways, continues to be. They felt what it was like to be excluded; and how awful it is to be included when others are suffering without.
King changed the world. He worked endlessly so everyone could simply be together--eating, working, growing and living our lives as one.
I am so glad those bad rules did not last.
There is still work to be done. Which brings me to this week's scripture:
Galatians: 3:28 (NIV): “There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.”
Recognize it? When I read this scripture I hear King's defiant, certain and clear voice ringing out over the National Mall. His voice reverberates and echoes, preaching the deepest truth that we, as fallen beings, so often ignore:
We are one in Christ. We are all the same. God does not see us as human beings with physical identities. He sees us souls--one body in Christ.
There are people, these souls I am one with, that I see everyday at school, in the grocery store, on my street. And I don't even know their names.
I think the work we still have to do is to truly practice our oneness. Too often I socialize with the same people. I avert my eyes at unfamiliar people. I only hold the door half the time for strangers. I rush and avoid and simply make myself too busy to love all.
Last week, I began to integrate real-time prayer into my day. This week I will work to integrate real time love into my day.
Christ was a living example of a man who hung out with anyone and everyone. Richer, poorer, smarter, dumber, criminals, lepers, prostitutes, Samaritans, tax collectors, and other unloved, undesirable members of society.
To live like Christ is to love like Christ.
Martin Luther King Jr. changed the world in a massive, revolutionary way. I think there are small revolutions to be had everyday. Say hello to stranger and make a new friend. Hold a door and change someone's day for a moment. Ask someone you don't know if they need help and in turn, be part of a change.
So this week, I will:
- Approach the world with an open heart and greet friends and strangers with warmth, equality and oneness.
- And I'll hold a door, ask some names and start my own tiny revolution of oneness.
Thank you for loving each of us as equals. Help us to love our community as you love us--without condition, without boundaries and with equality.
This was week 3 of Only One Thing: A Weekly Bible Study for Bad Christians. Wondering what that all means, read more here.
Oh, and I am firm believer that you can never be too late to the party, so catch up on Only One Thing Week 1 and Week 2