An Apology to Many

This is rather difficult to write. My heart is heavy and my mind is full. This election has tainted the moods of every American in one way or another. There is unrest and anger and hurt and fear. Politics are such a loaded topic. Writing about them, expressing an opinion regarding them can be terrifying. People seem to lose all tact, reason, and kindness during these months. But I pray that the outpouring of my heart will not be misunderstood as hate speech, nor as an easing of conscience, nor even as a farce or glossing over of real trials. Rather, I pray that these words will be as much of a challenge to anyone that reads them as they have been to me.  

Reflecting on the election, I am projecting hope on the future. Through prayer, I am hoping to see this nation unite under God. We were founded upon principles and values that sought to prosper and cultivate the uniting of individuals, most of which immigrated from other countries. While no country is without its faults it seems that the "western white world" has been elevated highly above others by the "non-western white world". Some might say that this is not a misunderstanding of those elevating us because over the years, the western whites have used their privilege and wealth to tread on the backs of our brown, black, and other colored brothers and sisters in this world. To that, I say "I am sorry". 

I am sorry to the Native Americans that were pushed out of their own homes. I am sorry you were mistreated and even killed so that others might create a nation here. I am sorry to the black Africans that were brought here and sold to work as slaves in the homes of those privileged white people. I am sorry to the Japanese and the Vietnamese that we fought against, abused, and imprisoned. You who are different have forever become emblazoned in the history books as "Niggers", "Japs", and "Gooks". My heart is sore over that. Truly it is. I am sorry you have been hated and mistreated by those preceding us. And I am sorry for those that did this. I apologize on their behalf. 

Your life matters. Your "black" life matters. Your "brown" life matters. Your "yellow" life matters. Asians, Africans, Europeans, Australians North and South Americans. . .you all matter and you deserve to be treated with love, honor, and kindness. And I am sorry you have received the wounds of name calling and lesser treatment. You are people and you are valuable. 

I am sorry to the men and women and children born into areas and families that are mistreated because of your social and financial status. I am sorry you have become the butt of "broke jokes". I am sorry you have somehow become the poster children for deadbeat, non-working, welfare scrounging, lazy stereotypes. I am sorry you feel you have to defend yourself so often against those with one job that pays better than yours. I am sorry to those of you in the LGBT community. I am sorry you have been bullied. I am sorry you have become the victims or our sharp words and unkind hands. 

Your life matters. Your struggle matters. Your perspective matters. Your opinion matters. Low class, Middle class, Upper class, and all branches off of it. . .you all matter. Whether you are a single parent trying to raise your kids up the best you know how; whether you are an addict, enslaved by the substances you played around with years ago, not thinking of the harm to come; whether you are working hard or hardly working, you deserve compassion and kindness and grace. I am sorry you have come to expect less. You are people and you are valuable.

I am sorry to those of you out there that "lost" in this recent election. I am sorry to those of you that "won". I am sorry to you still out there trying to determine what "side" you feel you need to chose. I am sorry to those out there hurting with others. 

Your life matters. Your fear matters. You might be a woman, you might be a man, you might be an immigrant, you might be an elderly individual, you might be a small child but you matter! You are afraid for the future because your rights may be "cut off" or "trampled on", I get that. Healthcare may be repealed and you may be concerned how you are going to care for yourself or a family member that was being helped by that system and I am sorry. You might be an immigrant here and are afraid you will be sent "home", back to a land that has provided for you less than what you were receiving here. Your children are afraid and you must stand strong for them and beside them. I am sorry.

Somehow that opinion of the white western world being supreme has not faded. The wounding is deep and no one has told your ancestors nor you that they are sorry. No one has offered to help your wounds heal and no one is making an effort to reconcile the issues of the past with the reality of present and the mystery of the future. I want to do that. Our world is fractured and the little pieces of it raining down on us, are painfully sharp. Rather than helping one another find a shelter from the pain, it seems we are arriving safely and slamming the doors in the faces of others. I am sorry you have been left out. The scars cannot be healed.

It shames me to know that someone could hurt someone else so badly. And it shames me to know that I am not innocent in matters similar to what I have stated. I am not always kind nor am I always right. My words have been razors and my actions worse than knives. I am sorry. America has become synonymous - in many other areas of the world - to Christianity. What an unfortunate fact. Please know that not all Christians are American and not all Americans are Christians. But we are all people, depraved and damaged by sin. But there is hope if we just believe.  

In this time of desperation
When all we know is doubt and fear
There is only one foundation
We believe, we believe
In this broken generation
When all is dark, You help us see
There is only one salvation
We believe, we believe

I believe in God the Father, I believe in Jesus Christ, I believe in the Holy Spirit and I have been given new life. In Him I find my identity and it goes beyond white, American female. I am a child of God and in that I have hope.

There is grace that reaches beyond my understanding and there is compassion in His name.

His power is beyond my imagination and He is control of all things at all times. Surely, I question why He allows evil things to happen but it is within His purpose and plan. What man plans for evil, God will turn into good. God makes abundant the harvest in the famine. God draws streams from the drought. God brings fruit to the barren. He holds it all. 

Now is the time for us to unite.
Americans as a whole ought to be apologetic toward others for the wrongs of the past. It does not hurt you to say "I am sorry" to someone else, even if you personally have not committed the "crime" at hand. We must band together as a nation and keep moving forward in courage. Fight for those that are afraid and fight for those that are unable to defend themselves! 
Christians the same applies for us. We must apologize for the injurious actions of our predecessors. We must band together in prayer and love. This nation is hurting and it needs Jesus! The best way it can find Him, is if we reveal Him in our actions and words. Stand up for the oppressed and the needy. Make the plight of the orphan and widow your own. Stand against injustice and do the right thing. 
Everyone, let those that are hurting grieve. Their fears are valid. Do not belittle them because what they are struggling with has not been real to you. Acknowledge their hardship and let them speak. They have a voice and it is important. Learn from someone else. Keep your rude comments to yourself. Be kind to someone else. Do something nice for a stranger. 

A president is one man. He is supposed to lead. Will we pray that he loves our people? Will we pray that he and his peers make decisions regarding the best interests of this nation? Will we stand up against injustice? Will we make our voices heard? Let us make what we say matter by coming together, listening to the fearful, comforting the hurting, and fighting for the weak and wounded. Let us stop complaining about what is past and begin acting in ways that will shape what is to come.