We continue to witness protests that been used to decry evil, condemn racism, demand policy reform, and communicate seething frustration with some practices. We have also seen people hijack a legitimate reason for protest to justify lawless behavior. We have seen police officers kneel in support of legitimate protesters and forced to defend themselves a few hours later as they enforce the law to protect against destruction and mayhem.
As I watched a report of protests in our city I heard a remark by an organizer that befuddled me. She said: "We do not condone the violence and looting that has occurred but we don't condemn it." Condone is defined as: to regard or treat (something bad or blameworthy) as acceptable, forgivable, or harmless. So they do not regard the violence as acceptable. We are on the same page. To condemn something is defined as: to declare to be reprehensible, wrong, or evil usually after weighing evidence and without reservation. The organizer was saying: "we don't find the violence and looting acceptable, but we are not going to say it is wrong" Therefore, my confusion. I was not sure where she stood.
As Christians, we must strive to avoid such conflicting messages as we represent Jesus Christ. We can't speak of His love while we are shouting. We can't speak of His mercy as we turn our heads to those in need. We can't speak of the need for unity when we fail to practice it. The list goes on and on but I think we have the idea. Just to be clear, I said "when we represent Jesus Christ"; that is every day of our lives since we proclaimed Him Lord and Savior. The Bible teaches us that they will know us by our love. Let that be what they know us for and not mixed messages.
Have a blessed Saturday.