GET OFF YOUR HIGH HORSE AND GET IN THE RIVER
Melanie’s brother and his wife Bob and Mary Holland have a ministry in Jamaica called New Beginnings. They have been loving on the children there for 40 years. They adopted a 2 year old boy from Jamaica in 2002 who is presently living in PA with Bob and Mary’s biological son Brice. His name is Kimarley Holland (Kimmy).
The other day Melanie and Kimmy had been grocery shopping and were at the check-out. After scanning a few items the person at the register looked up at Kimmy and asked him what he was doing in line? Caught off guard Kimmy shyly replied, “I’m with her” and gestured toward Melanie. Again the cashier questioned Kimmy, “You’re with her?” At that point Melanie interrupted the conversation and said, “Yes, he is my nephew and he’s with me.” The young man continued to scan Melanie’s purchases while at the same time his eyes darted back and forth from Melanie to Kimmy with that same questioning demeanor. Kimmy knew he was being questioned because he was black and Melanie isn’t.
Being black in Jamaica is kinda par for the course, 92% are. However not so in US where 13% are Black/African American and 61% white. This is not the first time Kimarly has experienced this type of profiling since coming to the States. To top it all off, the cashier was black also. Duhh, black on black profiling how bad can it get? I wish I could rap my head around this American quagmire BUT I’m having a slight brain cramp. But I’m gonna try.
A few weeks ago at church Pastor Sam was speaking on Courageous Faith. At one point he spoke of Naaman. Naaman was Commander of Armies and was seen as a great man in the sight of his master and highly regarded. He was a valiant servant but had leprosy. Naaman had heard of the great prophet Elisha and that Elisha could heal him of his leprosy. He went with his horses and chariots and stopped at the door of Elisha’s house. Elisha sent out his servant to say to him: “Go wash yourself seven times in the Jordan and your flesh will be cleansed and restored.”
Naaman was infuriated and said, “I thought he would surely come out to me and call on the name of the Lord his God, wave his hand over me and cure me. Are not the rivers of my Damascus better than the rivers of Israel?” Naaman turned and went off in a rage. His servant beseeched him to follow what Elisha had said. As he relented and did as the servant had told him, his flesh was restored and became as clean as a young boys.
The point, Naamans’ arrogance almost cost him a blessing and a healing.
THAT’S IT. It’s arrogance. Arrogance: “An overwhelming exaggeration of one’s importance. Marked by an inflated ego and distain for what one considers inferior.” As a people as a nation WE MUST do as Melanie did, speak up and say, “He’s with me, He’s part of my family”.
An old Wayne Watson song says it best; “We are The People of God, called by His name, called from the dark and delivered from shame. ONE HOLY RACE, saints EVERYONE Because of the blood of Christ Jesus, the Son.”
I often say, “We cannot be so repulsed by sin that we reject the sinner.” This constant bantering, arguing and blatant disregard and hatred towards others isn’t even about sin. People can be so egotistical about skin pigment, education, wealth, accent, country of origin, what neighborhood we live in, what church we go to, physical appearance, and mental capacity. We’re so narcissistic.
It seems so obvious that the arrogance of a person or a nation will surely disqualify them from a healing and a blessing from the Lord our God. You see denigrating someone else only disqualifies us from the blessings not them.
Arrogance, personally or as a group or a Nation, WILL steal blessings and healings. It comes in many shapes. By race, by gender, by faith/religion or lack thereof. Arrogance entwines political, financial, educational and employment status. Where we live or were born, our mental or physical capabilities, each of these can deceive us in feeling superior to others. 2 Chronicles says; If my people who are called by my name shall humble themselves, Pray, Seek My Face, and Turn From Their Wicked Ways I will hear from heaven and Heal their land.”
It’s really not that hard, just be like Naaman. Admit to your foolishness, get down off your High Horse and get in the river. Instant healing. Can I Get an Amen?
Oh, by the way; Kimmy doesn’t have an arrogant bone in his body.