As June unfolds before us, most of us thought we’d be focused on getting back to normal and reopening for business and church and life. Instead, we look on our screens and find our nation in the grip of fear and anger, grief, and growing division. Widespread protests after the cruel killing of George Floyd have given voice to pent up indignation and frustration. Violence and looting have marred our cities.

What’s happening to our country? What can we do? As disciples of Jesus Christ, how should we respond? To take a line from the statement linked below, we cannot remain silent. We must not assume that what is happening in our country is someone else’s problem, or ignore it in the hopes it will just blow over soon.

Last night we had the privilege to hear from two of our church members, Sara Sanders and Mawuli Vodi, about their reaction to George Floyd’s death and their experiences as African-American people following Jesus. They joined Vince in leading us in a time of prayer through a psalm of lament, Psalm 13. If you missed it, I urge you to set aside 30 minutes of your time and watch this interview and be affected by the lives and experiences of Sara and Mawuli. You can watch the interview and prayer time here.

Today, I want to pass along to you this “Statement on the Death of George Floyd” that was released by the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) this week. RGC recently voted to affiliate with the SBC and we appreciate their willingness to address this important issue as well as the fact that it was unanimously signed by all SBC officers as well as the executive director of every state convention.

Later this week, the elders of RGC will provide you with our own statement in response to George Floyd’s death.

On Sunday, June 7, the sermon will be from 1 John 4:7-11. We’ll be considering God’s call to us to love one another as we’ve been loved by him, and how that works out in a pandemic as well as in this time of upheaval in response to George Floyd’s death. Wouldn’t it be amazing if, during a time when people have widely divergent views about so many things, from wearing masks to the presence of racism in our country, the church could stick together, united around Christ, and press in to listen, learn from, and love one another?

Finally, if you don’t understand why people insist that racism is still a present problem in our country, or if you don’t agree that it is a problem at all, or if you’d like to grow in your understanding of the experience of black Americans, there are lots of great resources out there. I’m no expert, but I’m committed to listening and learning. Here are links to previous Midweek Musings posts where you’ll find recommended books and movies. And speaking of movies, if you haven’t seen “Just Mercy” (starring Michael B. Jordan and Jamie Foxx), it’s well done and now available to stream for free here. I wrote about the story here (spoiler alert – I tell you what happens!).

Recommended movies.

Recommended books.

Mark Mullery

P.S. Got comments or questions about this post, or ideas for another one? Email me at midweekmusings@rgcfairfax.org.