Thursday, July 14, 2016

The Dallas Police and the Doorway

Last week I was numb from the news—two incidences where black men were stopped for traffic violations and ended up shot dead at the hands of police officers, and then the horrific attack during the protest in Dallas targeting white police officers in retaliation. The events have since sparked a fervor of opinions, emotion, and actions from everyone, whether you have a political or social hat in the ring or not. The climate of the country is clearly leaning toward, “enough is enough.”

But something else spoke to me in regards to that week—something prompting me to look beyond the impulse reactions of anger and political blame. Is there more to see here?

I guess I always have one foot in the Doorway—and in this case, my orb is reflecting a glowing light, alerting me to think again, to rise above, and to see more clearly. And so this post is a reflection of my thoughts tying the Dallas Police to the Doorway back to Forever. This connection is where we begin to heal.

Go with me for a moment with this—put aside politics, blame, social justice, and retaliation. Those are the first reactions we feel when tragedy ensues. First reactions draw attention to the wound, but they don’t offer healing.

Take a deep breath. Now, look at what else happened in Dallas the night of the shooting—heroism. It took several days for the reports to come out, but in two separate instances at least, protesters came forward to testify of experiences which had the effect of softening their hearts toward the very people they were protesting against, the police.

One black woman testified how she had been shot in the leg during the carnage, and white police officers had surrounded her to protect her and her son. She had witnessed two officers get shot. She testified how their acts of heroism saved her and her son—heroism at a time when these heroes were in fact the targets of the shooter.

Another black man commented how he had been at the end of the line in the protest march, purposefully walking slowly to taunt the officers. When the shots rang out, the officers quickly surrounded him and pulled him from the chaotic scene. His life had changed that day, having witnessed how the very people he hated had used themselves as human shields to save him, despite the fact that they were the ones being targeted.

In other protests, blacks have been seen standing in front of the police to protect them from harm. Here we have a breathtaking example of people willing to lay down their lives to protect the officers—true heroes indeed.

“Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.” (John 15:13)

There was also video footage of a Black Lives Matters protest and a counter protest of whites coming together hugging, praying, and inviting the police officers to pray with them. These are the examples we must certainly revere, for they speak to who we are as individuals—sons and daughters of one race, the human race.

“A new commandment I give unto you, that ye love one another as I have loved you.”  (John 13:34)

While some high-profile figures in the news continue to bring up past grievances that had once divided this nation, and while others spout off rhetoric designed to further divide us still, we need to recognize the poison it represents and say, “Enough is enough.” We can then look beyond the Doorway to see more—how individuals rise above hate and embrace each other with love. Example of self-sacrifice and heroism are virtues that flow in abundance beyond the Doorway. It is my hope that more people will explore the Kingdom of Forever to remember these values again, to bring them home, and to share them more abundantly, one moment at a time. 

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