“Thanks Chasidy– you are brave as usual.” I read this comment and it’s taken me all day to process it. (Maybe that’s because I have the flu and my brain isn’t working 100%).
But, brave. That’s not an adjective that I can ever remember being used to describe me. It’s definitely not something I feel on a regular basis. As a matter of fact, I have, over the last few years, had to constantly remind myself that FEAR does not come from the Lord, and therefore should not motivate my decisions. And since brave is being prepared to face danger or discomfort without fear, it appears I have made a little progress.
I don’t think I am brave. I think I am convicted and passionate about being a voice for the marginalized. Speaking up for the poor, those without families, and those who have been told they are less-than due to the colour of their skin. (Please excuse my spellcheck- my phone thinks I’m British and automatic changes favourite, colour, etc). Often times I am terrified (insert: opposite of brave) to post something that I know without doubt goes against what my family or friends think. But bigger than that fear is the face of that beautiful child with brown skin who should never feel less capable to attend medical school than my own beautiful child with white (heck, lighter shade of brown,skin) based on their skin colour or designated race. They are BOTH beautiful children of God, created in His image, and one no more or less worthy to attend any school they want, play any sport they want, or insert a bazillion other opportunities little kids should have. So I don’t think I lack fear, but I have decided that the passion to speak up for those whose voices are not being heard is way bigger than the fear of what someone else may think.
I feel so unqualified. For starters, I’m very white. From a small town in south Georgia where things are still quite segregated (churches, teams, neighborhoods). I’m not a fan of international travel. I have anxiety about large and dangerous crowds. Yet, I think back to people God used throughout the Bible and they were never qualified. As a matter of fact, some of their lists of unqualifications looked worse than mine. Yet, God used them for really, really big things. They didn’t have to be qualified. They just had to be willing to check their fear at the door, and do what He asked. I don’t think God has chosen me to lead a movement or anything huge. I do believe He has put the burden on my heart to be a part of the movements that stands up to a group of white people and says “I know you don’t think you are racist. But you are. The words you are saying are hurtful and racist. They aren’t welcome.” To be a part of a movement that helps those who don’t know where their next meal will come from. And to stand up for a generation of children, both in our community and overseas, that the world has tossed to the side and deemed unworthy and unimportant.
So, maybe I am brave. I am at least brave enough to tell my fear where to go while I am busy making it known that all of these live among us and they are welcome here and could use our help. I am not a marcher. See above about anxiety around large, potentially dangerous crowds. But I am a sharer. A connector. And an advocator. And I will continue to use these skills and gifts until they really is justice for all.
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