I fasted recently. It’s a part of the Christian walk that I hadn’t embarked on seriously in quite sometime. Yet, I knew I needed to do something. For 4.5 days I cut out meat. The first 1.5 days I drank only water. I prayed. In my individual meditation I didn’t pray for anything or anyone but myself. I know, selfish, but necessary.

My heart, with all going on in the USA was getting harder by the minute. How is that possible? I’m faithful, loving, a minister, I serve people daily in my role. How can my heart get harder or wax cold? Does God still live here, within me, through the Holy Spirit? Jesus, are you there, with me, feeling my internal struggle, to make sense of another African-American murdered at the hands of police? I can’t breathe, my anxiety is growing as I also deal with the murder of a brother at my church, murdered at the hands of a fellow African-American? I can’t understand, comprehend, articulate, express, grasp, or rationalize any of it. It’s perplexing, it’s confusing, it’s frightening, and leaving me petrified and hardened.

I prayed for my heart. The more I watched white Facebook friends call looters animals, post racist statements, defend the murder of George Floyd, say “All Lives Matter”, say “Blue Lives Matter” I was enraged even more. And, still dealing with Chicago’s street violence, gun violence, gang violence, and how it further perpetuates the stereotypes against African-Americans. Listening to the POTUS say crack down on protestors. I watched white people, unarmed, showing us in numbers to march. I’m not talking about the agitators who set fires, and incited riots. I’m talking about the ones I watched get beat with batons and they were unarmed. Wait, who are they? Why now? I watched White Facebooks friends post, “Black Lives Matter. We stand with Floyd. We run with Ahmad. We haven’t forgotten you Breonna Taylor.” Wow, they do care also. I’m confused.

I prayed for my heart even more. In the midst of all this God is still on the throne. Watching, observing, calling people to action. satan is here, watching, observing, calling people to action. The world is protesting? Wait, what??? Amsterdam, Paris, London, Iran, New Zealand, Australia, all standing in humanity against brutality. Wait, why? They’ve been silent for years, why now? Who cares, they are supporting when it truly counts as humanity evolves. I think of a forgotten supporter of Civil Rights. James Reeb was murdered. The men were acquitted. He was murdered along with two African-American brothers. Three brothers were murdered, remove color. Slavery, whites hung us, maimed us. Slavery, whites helped free us through the Underground Railroad. Slavery, Blacks refused to leave the plantation and turned in others who were planning to run away.

I’m confused, ranting, writing with no purpose. Expressing myself. I fasted to pray for my heart and realized that I had to disconnect for a time from social media, from news, from people and simply guard my heart and pray and meditate, and study the Bible. I am troubled but not distressed, I am perplexed but not in despair, I am persecuted but not forsaken, I am cast down but not destroyed.

I fasted and prayed for my heart. I must become a lifestyle to stay at peace within and at peace with God.

Random, writing, expression, hopeful…

God bless you all.