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Helpful Gospel-Centered Resources on Racial Reconciliation and Justice:

This is a page of resources regarding gospel-centered racial justice.  We believe that racism is wrong.  That is not a complex issue.  But dealing with and confronting racism and how we heal from racism is much more complex.  Especially coming from a primarily Asian-American perspective, it’s important that we are active in our duty, loving in our actions, and humble with our hearts and minds.  Walking with God through this issue will require reading, watching, and listening well.  Here you’ll find a list of videos and movies to watch, books and articles to listen to, and ministries to follow and learn from.

Videos to Watch:

Preston Perry – New Woke Christian (lightly edited transcript)

To the Christian: there is nothing wrong with being woke. In fact I believe when we care about injustice heaven smiles with the grin of a thousand horizons. The angels begin to dance and they like joy singing with their whole bodies. Alright now praise, thankful that we are evidence that God is a just God but on the other hand, my soul shivers into a upwards prayer for some of you. I see how Satan has used the anger of black grief to snuff the love out of some of our hearts in the name of black awakening.  So here is a series of seven questions for the New Woke Christian.
One
Are you really woke or was it hard to rest because America has made you cold and uncomfortable? I see your loveless tweets on Twitter still trying to masquerade themselves as godly correction and I often wonder how long will you lie to yourself.
Two
Is being woke only a trend for some of you like high top phase and ripped jeans will it one day go out of style? Are you riding the walk trained to fit in towards your heart really in love with justice? Be honest some of y’all ain’t woke for real, y’all just fighting sleeping fear that you might miss out on the next hashtag controversy.
Three
Have you mistaken being woke with hatred because they’re not the same. I must admit with Sandra Bland’s body mysteriously was beaten to a ghost in jail and her murder became a question mark on CNN news, it made me look at white people with the side eye for a minute too. My flesh rolls like an angry revolution and begged me to cling to my people like we all we got while treating all white pigment invisible. But surely after I thought about God and how he made a heaven for me and possibly the white lady in my apartment building who becomes unsure of us. While every time I get on the elevator she tries to shrink into a gnat hoping I don’t see her or rob her or kill her.  You know I don’t really know for sure, but what I do know is that because of Christ I owe her our love in full.
Four
Has your heritage and culture become your functional savior? If so the only difference between you and a black Hebrew Israelite is that you claim you believe Jesus is Lord while still putting black people on the throne.  I believe God used cell phone camera lynchings as a light to expose how far dark races America has not come, but could it be Satan has used our anger to make it seem like God ain’t really fighting for us for real? Making us as adoptees we be the original people religions. I’m soaking sad seeing so many of my people slowly Million Man Marching themselves away from the faith but the truth is some of you put your hope in American Christianity and not the guy we saw saw seeing half to leave Israel to a land to leave Israel to a land where slavery knew not their names and freedom sung them into a clear sky, please hear my heart. This is not an attack on our blackness but a cry for my black brothers and sisters not to walk away from our father.
Five
Do you think I’m saying Christians should not be woke? If so you missed the point of the poem so far. I’m only saying if woke Christians lack balance we would fall for the first man with the snake tongue exalting the black race over the cross. Men who men who claim Christianity be the white man religion tell them to go to heaven.  Speak to our slave ancestors who risk their limbs sneaking away in the black of midnight to teach each other the scriptures in context.  They didn’t try to become their own God to fight against oppression but trusted the mighty hand of God to do the fighting for them. Christ came to cover them from amongst the bloody Mississippi poplar trees. He was their living water in the cotton fields as the August heat tried to stroke their bodies into a dishonorable grave. He was that song that the Mr. Men clothed in unrighteous hatred attempted to slay the imago dei out of them. In fact, slave masters teachings couldn’t find their way instead of their rejuvenated hearts because the Holy Spirit already made a home there it was comfortable too – ain’t it amazing, ain’t it amazing how they woke up every morning and served the same men who enslaved them with joy because they knew God Himself lived inside of that chest. They were oppressed while still loving a more blatant enemy and none of us can ever be more woke than they were.
Six
Are you hurting? Not fake hurting but for real hurting. It’s hard to do Church when it feels like black murders get swept under the pulpit. Are you terrified of hugging someone who voted for Trump on Sunday mornings? Singing songs of praise with saints who never learned the melody of “Black Boy Blues”, who think we riot for fun?  Treat our pain invisible, forget to mourn with us after Bible study. I know how much it stings but some of our churches were fly to Africa to do missions but won’t launch for Trayvon in Florida.  With some church folk told you to be Christian but not black, when all lives matter sounds like get over it. Why do black people always have to hurt so loud?  Let’s believe God sees our frustrations, but blind men not sharing our tears should not make us treat the church like it’s not the bride of the God who made black lives matter.
Seven
Did y’all know Christ was woke Jew from Galilee? Who hated racism with all of his deeds, he beloved fire-and-brimstone out of racist men who could see past his brown skin to worship him as God? If we think he won’t bring justice for Mike Brown, Tamir Rice, Freddy Gray, Sean Bell and all the other brown bodies America did not sing the national anthem for, maybe we should stop studying our history just for a moment and scan the Scriptures for his resume. Ain’t no way, ain’t no way God don’t see us when he sits on the throne that high. You can’t tell me if we cry for help he will teach us how to fight and love at the same time. Fox News can’t convince God that men made in His image deserve bullets for selling loose cigarettes or reaching for his wallet or wearing a hoodie in the wrong neighborhood. Don’t let no lie tell you Christ ain’t for black folk when for centuries he thought so much of us that he allowed us to share in his sufferings? Please believe our roots being plucked from the shores of Africa in 1619, our grandparents being raised in the Ku Klux Klan itself, with West African features, and black bodies still becoming steel, its blood bought pavement today by the hands of cops, has been our way of relating to the pain of our Savior. Don’t let Satan trick you, make you think the cross we bear as a people ain’t beautiful. Like God ain’t got no crowns waiting for black craniums after we endure to the end.  The day is coming when Jesus will come and swoon over the true woke Christian all white, and rescue him from all injustice and on that day we will complete the old Negro spiritual song about ancestors. When they looked to the hills and sang: “We shall overcome.” And on that day, we will be glad we did. Like the child who waited patiently for the storm to pass to play beneath the Sun and the woke Christian, tired but yet righteous, will finally get his chance to rest in the sovereignty of his Savior.

The time of Covid-19 has forced a long-standing inter-minority conflict between Asian American and African American communities to resurface within the public eye. Tracing its history from the 1800s through the present, these two racial groups have held racial biases and prejudices against the other, which has led to violent and traumatic events. “Interconnect: Confronting Racial Prejudices between Asian American and African American Communities,” is an AAPI heritage Month Panel Series which maps out the history of inter-minority conflict between Asian Americans and African Americans; it addresses the problem of racial biases from a biblical perspective; and finally, it considers paths of healing and solidarity moving forward. Our aim is to educate, equip, and empower African American and Asian American Christians to think historically, biblically and humbly about their relationships with each other, and for these truths to open up new pathways for conversations, bridge building, and discipleship. A reflection guide will also accompany the series to be used for personal and group study.

Interconnected Part 1:

This conversation with Ray Chang, Jane Hong, Christina Edmondson, and Dominique Gilliard will be recorded as part 1/3 in our series “Interconnected: Confronting Racial Prejudices between Asian American and Black Communities.”

Interconnected Part 2:

This conversation with Michelle, Ekemini, Jeff, and Esau will be recorded as part 2/3 of the series “Interconnected: Confronting Racial Prejudice between Asian American and Black Communities.”

Interconnected Part 3:

This conversation with Tasha, Soong-Chan, Sheila, and Vivian will be recorded as part 3/3 of the series. Panel 3: Pursuing Healing and Solidarity for Asian American and African American Communities.

The Gospel Coalition’s MLK50 Conference:

On April 3-4, 2018 in Memphis, TN The Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission and The Gospel Coalition hosted a special event titled “MLK50: Gospel Reflections from the Mountaintop,” to reflect on the 50th anniversary of King’s trafic death marked an opportunity for Christians to reflect on the state of racial unity in the church and the culture. It created the occasion to reflect on where Christians have been and look ahead to where we must go as we pursue racial unity in the midst of tremendous tension.

Key speakers include Charlie Dates, Matt Chandler, Jackie Hill Perry, Eric Mason, Russell Moore, Trip Lee, John Piper, Benjamin Watson, and many others.

Stories & Movies:

Just Mercy

Selma

Harriet

12 Years a Slave

Books to Read

Woke Church

Eric Mason

Between the Christianity of this land, and the Christianity of Christ, I recognize the widest possible difference.” – Frederick Douglass, 1845

The prophets of old were not easy to listen to because they did not flatter. They did not cajole. They spoke hard words that often chafed and unsettled their listeners. Like the Old Testament prophets, and more recent prophetic voices like Frederick Douglass, Dr. Eric Mason calls the evangelical church to a much-needed reckoning. In a time when many feel confused, complacent, or even angry, he challenges the church to:

Be Aware – to understand that the issue of justice is not a black issue, it’s a kingdom issue. To learn how the history of racism in American and in the church has tainted our witness to a watching world.

Be Redemptive – to grieve and lament what we have lost and to regain our prophetic voice, calling the church to remember our gospel imperative to promote justice and mercy.

Be Active – to move beyond polite, safe conversations about reconciliation and begin to set things aright for our soon-coming King, who will be looking for a WOKE CHURCH.

Be the Bridge

Latasha Morrison founder of https://bethebridge.com

ECPA BESTSELLER

WINNER OF CHRISTIANITY TODAY BOOK AWARD

A leading advocate for racial reconiliation offers a clarion call for Christians to move toward relationship and deeper understanding in the midst of a divisive culture.

With racial tensions as high within the church as outside the church, it is time for Christians to become the leaders in the conversation on racial reconciliation. This power-packed guide helps readers deepen their understanding of historical factors and present realities, equipping them to participate in the ongoing dialogue and to serve as catalysts for righteousness, justice, healing, transformation, and reconciliation.

Beyond Colorblind

Sarah Shin

For a generation or so, society has tried to be colorblind. People say they don’t see race. But this approach has limitations. In our broken world, ethnicity and racial identity are often points of pain and injustice. We can’t ignore that God created us with our ethnic identities. We bring all of who we are, including our ethnicity and cultural background, to our identity and work as God’s ambassadors. Ethnicity and evangelism specialist Sarah Shin reveals how our brokenness around ethnicity can be restored and redeemed, for our own wholeness and also for the good of others. When we experience internal transformation in our ethnic journeys, God propels us outward in a reconciling witness to the world. Ethnic healing can demonstrate God’s power and goodness and bring good news to others. Showing us how to make space for God’s healing of our ethnic stories, Shin helps us grow in our crosscultural skills, manage crosscultural conflict, pursue reconciliation and justice, and share the gospel as ethnicity-aware Christians. Jesus offers hope for healing, both for ourselves and for society. Discover how your ethnic story can be transformed for compelling witness and mission.

Healing Racial Trauma: The Road to Resilience

Sheila Wise Rowe

“People of color have endured traumatic histories and almost daily assaults on our dignity. We have prayed about racism, been in denial, or acted out in anger, but we have not known how to individually or collectively pursue healing from the racial trauma.”

As a child, Sheila Wise Rowe was bused across town to a majority white school, and she experienced the racist lie that one group is superior to all others. We experience ongoing racial trauma as this lie is perpetuated by the action or inaction of the government, media, viral videos, churches, and within families of origin. In contrast, Scripture decalres that we are all fearfully and wonderfully made. Professional counselor Rowe exposes the symptoms of racial trauma to lead readers to a place of freedom from the past and new life for the future. In each chapter, she includes an interview with a person of color to explore how we experience and resolve racial trauma. With Rowe as a reliable guide who has both been on the journey and shown others the way forward, you will find a safe pathway to resilience.

The Color of Compromise: The Truth about the American Church’s Complicity in Racism

Jemar Tisby

An acclaimed, timely narrative of how people of faith have historically – -up to the present day — worked against racial justice. And a call for urgent action by all Christians today in response.

The Color of Compromise is both enlightening and compelling, telling a history we either ignore or just don’t know. Equal parts painful and inspirational, it details how the American church has helped create and maintain racist ideas and practices. You will be guided in thinking through concrete solutions for improved race relations and a racially inclusive church.

The Color of Compromise is not a call to shame or a platform to blame white evangelical Christians. It is a call from a place of love and desire to fight for a more racially unified church that no longer compromises what the Bible teaches about human dignity and equality. A call that challenges black and white Christians alike to standup now and begin implementing the concrete ways Tisby outlines, all for a more equitable and inclusive environment among God’s people.

White Awake: An Honest Look at What It Means to be White

Daniel Hill

Daniel Hill will never forget the day he heard these words: “Daniel, you may be white, but don’t let that lull you into thinking you have no culture. White culture is ver real. In fact, when white culture comes in contact with other cultures, it almost always wins. So it would be a really good idea for you to learn about your culture.” Confused and unsettled by this encounter, Hill began a journey of understanding his own white identity. Today he is an active participant in addressing and confronting racial and systemic injustices. And in this compelling and timely book, he shows you the seven stages to expect on your own path to cultural awakening. It’s crucial to understand both personal and social realities in the areas of race, culture, and identity. This book will give you a new perspective on begin white and also empower you to be an agent of reconciliation in our increasingly diverse and divided world.

Articles & Podcast:

TALKING ABOUT RACE, RACISM, AND THE CHURCH WITH PASTOR BRYAN LORITTS AND DR. ALEXANDER JUN

(MUST LISTEN / READ)

 

Botham Jean’s Brother’s Offer of Forgiveness Went Viral. His Mother’s Calls for Justice Should Too.

We Need to Be Uncomfortable

Learning from Jesus on Justice

 

The Final Call of John Perkins

John Perkins Testimony Video

Prophets of Culture: Reflections on Black Lives

Unmasking Racism, Starting with Me

Ministries to become familiar with:

https://bethebridge.com

Our vision is that people and organizations are aware and responding to the racial brokenness and systemic injustice in our world. People are no longer conditioned by a racialized society but grounded in truth. All are equipped to flourish.

https://brownicity.com

The word and the work provides space to live in the tension of restoring one human family that has been fractured by the lies and injustice of race/ism.

We are dedicated to advocacy, education, and support for racial healing and antiracism.

https://legacydisciple.org

Legacy exsists to create a culture of disciple-making that transforms cities.

We encourage, equip and empower primarily urban Christian laity to make disciples of Christ in their neighborhoods and the nations.

https://andcampaign.org

Urban Christians are determined to assert ourselves into America’s political & cultural arena. We refuse to settle for civic & community engagement that forces us to either neglect our compassion or surrender our convictions. From mass incarceration to the right to life, it’s time to engage in advocacy that better reflects the love & truth of the Gospel.

As Christians, we are called to civic and community engagement. We have a duty to impact culture in a manner that reflects the truth (&) love of Jesus Christ. This commission includes participation in the political arena, wherein actions or inaction can have a profound effect on all aspects of society. Life, freedom and the general well-being of all citizens can be significantly enhanced or diminished by political dynamics.

Urban Christians have a unique and powerful sociopolitical perspective that is not fully represented by either of the two predominant political ideologies. It is a Gospel-centered worldview that is committed to redemptive justice (&) values-based policy. However, we have allowed the urban political class to abandon the latter.

A lack of organization and a poorly maintained platform has left us in a situation where we are exploited for votes, but command little policy influence. Urban Christians must find innovative ways to be critical, yet constructive participants in the marketplace of ideas. We must rebuild our sociopolitical platform and infrastructure, while demonstrating that our faith is more important than our politics.

We do not have the luxury of either focusing on social justice or values-based issues; both affect the foundation of our communities and are inseparably tied together. A new generation fo urban Christians must address today’s dilemmas with courage, kindness and an unshakeable faith. We must speak truth with compassion (&) conviction. We must echo the good news in prayer and public witness for the common good.

https://jude3project.org

The vision of the Ministry encompasses apologetics that address current issues and the intellectual struggles of Christians of African descent in the Uninted States and abroad. We are committed to equipping the local Church that the mandate of Jude 1:3 might be fulfilled – content for the faith that was once for all entrusted to God’s holy people.

The Ministry’s objectives are accomplished through:

  • Lectures and Seminars
  • Training in Apologetics
  • Podcasts
  • Blogs

https://thewitnessbbc.com/about/

The Witness is a black Christian collective that engages issues of religion, race, justice, and culture from a biblical perspective. We are changing the way Christians engage the church and the world by challenging them to think and act according to the holistic message of Christ. We consciously draw on the expansive black church tradition to address matters of personal faith while also speaking to issues of public righteousness. We believe that the Christian message applies not only to our eternity but also to our present-day circumstances and lived reality.

https://www.truthstable.com/about-truths-table

Welcome to Truth’s table with Michelle Higgins, Christian Edmondson, and Ekemini Uwan. We are Black Christian women who love truth and seek it out wherever it leads us. We have unique perspectives on race, politics, gender, current events, and pop culture that are filtered through our Christian faith. So pull up a chair and have a seat at the table with us. Listen to Truth’s Table Podcast on Apple Podcasts, SoundCloud, Satchel Podcast Player, and Google Play.

https://www.asianamericanchristiancollaborative.com

The Asian American Christian Collabroative (AACC) seeks to encourage, equip, and empower Asian American Christians and friends of our community to follow Christ holistically. We are committed to amplifying the voices, issues, and histories of Asian Americans in the church and society at large. While the Asian American (Asian Pacific Islander Desi American) community is extremely diverse and we cannot speak for every individual, we aim to spotlight and celebrate the Asian American community as inclusively as possible.

https://reformedmargins.com

Reformed Margins exists to celebrate the glory of God and exalt the person and work of Jesus Christ among the nations. We pray that this site provides a platform for Reformed Christian thinkers from various ethnic minority backgrounds to join in the broader Reformed and Evangelical conversations.

 

https://sola.network

SOLA Network exists to influence the emerging generation with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. It serves as a digital platform for evangelical leaders, writers, speakers, and bloggers who share the same values of faith to provide Gospel-centered resources.

We believe in the Trinitarian God of the Bible who is working out a redemptive Kingdom plan through the local church for the glory of Jesus Christ. SOLA Netwrok is in alignment with the Confessional Statement of The Gospel Coalition.  

Praying Through Racial Reconciliation as an Asian-American

May 31st, 2020 

As you’re more than well aware, 2020 is clearly God’s call for the church to pray.  If nothing else, 2020 has proven to us that we’re not in control of anything, and that the unthinkable is our reality.  The coronavirus pandemic has utterly transformed how we live and think about our interactions with others, and now we’re once again at the brink of racial breakdown.  The ’92 LA Riots were nearly 30 years ago, and for many of us, the images we’re seeing from the rioting in LA is causing us anxiety as we recall and remember the terror of those weeks. 

But how we respond now will mark the younger generation for years to come.  How we respond to what is happening in our city and what is happening to the Black-American community is crucial to show how we understand that the gospel is for every aspect of our life.  Let me say it plainly – racism is wrong, and what happened to George Floyd and countless others is evil and wicked.  Although most of the protestors were peaceful and truly sought non-violent means for change, we’re not living in normal circumstances.  There have been 3 back-to-back cases of unjust Black-American deaths in the last month, and with the global pandemic, the pressure that has been boiling and building up in the hearts of so many is now pouring out into the streets.  And the same goes for our own Asian-American community.  We’ve all become very aware of our own “otherness” in the last few months because of racism against Asians as the “source” of COVID-19.  This too, has been building in our hearts over the last few months, and I believe that many of us are also at a boiling point; we see the looting and the rioting and it makes us want to take action, or say things that are filled with disappointment, hatred, anger, and racism towards others.   

Personally, this was what I experienced after the ’92 LA Riots.  I don’t blame them for this, but many of our 1st generation parents responded as the rioters and protestors of Rodney King’s brutality did – with anger and bitterness towards the Black-American rioters, and the White police officers who did not step in until the rioting reached the White, wealthy Beverly Hills districts.  The fear and hatred caused tensions to run deep and I heard it in passing comments all the time.  I grew up in the valley, in Northridge and Granada Hills – and for the latter parts of my elementary and middle school years, I was bullied by Black-Americans bussed into our schools from the inner-city.  This brewed racism in my own heart, and I was able to easily justify it because of the memories of what they had done to me personally, and what they had done to my people.  But our passion as Korean-Americans wasn’t just expressed in racism, as it brought together the community to rebirth Koreatown into the soft power cultural destination that it is now.  This is what makes this week’s rioting even more heartbreaking.  What will all that be for if it goes in flames again? 

But here we must pause – because if we don’t, the cycle of hatred and anger will simply start all over again.  My youngest son, Ian, turns 4 years old today.  I don’t want him to grow up with the kind of fear and hatred that I did.  I don’t want any of my children to harbor bitterness towards any kind of people group.  Instead, I want to impart to them how the gospel shapes our response to the evil in our hearts and the evil in the streets.  

Let’s take a moment to read Romans 12:9-21.  Mark or underline everything the Bible commands us to do: 

  • Abhor what is evil
  • Hold fast to what is good
  • Love one another with brotherly affection
  • Outdo one another in showing honor
  • Don’t be slothful
  • Be fervent in spirit
  • Serve the Lord
  • Rejoice in Hope
  • Be patient in tribulation
  • Be constant in prayer
  • Contribute to the needs of the saints
  • Show hospitality
  • Bless those who persecute you
  • Do not curse them
  • Rejoice with those who rejoice
  • Weep with those who weep
  • Live in harmony with one another
  • Don’t be proud
  • Associate with the lowly
  • Never be wise in your own sight
  • Do not repay evil for evil
  • Do what is honorable for everyone
  • As much as possible, live peaceably with all
  • Never avenge ourselves; leave that to God’s wrath
  • Love our enemies; trust that God will judge
  • Do not be overcome by evil
  • Overcome evil with good 

This is a LONG list of things that show us how we respond.  Biblical justice is framed by love towards others.  Take a few moments and process through what these things mean in light of the police brutality, the systemic racism against Black-Americans, the racism that we’ve faced as Asian-Americans, and the rioting in LA.  

Once we pause and take a step back, we see the wisdom in God’s Word.  He doesn’t call us to frustration – but to humbly mourn with those who mourn, and to respond with kindness and generosity to those who seek to hurt us.  All of our actions are rooted in God’s sovereignty, that we should place our faith and trust that his justice will balance the scales of right and wrong.  Christian justice requires love, otherwise it’s no different than the world’s response.  Jesus says in John 8:44 that Satan is “a murderer from the beginning and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him.”  In 1 John 3:15 it says, “Everyone who hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him.” 

Let’s pause again… in my heart, who is my response shaped by?  Is it shaped by Jesus who calls me to bless those who persecute me and not to curse them?  Or is it shaped by Satan, who desires for hatred and anger to boil into murder?  

So what do we do?  Where do we take our anger?  

We spill it out in front of God and we beg him to change our hearts.  We pick up the Psalms and we read and we weep.  We cry for our friends and family who have lost their businesses because of the looting and rioting.  We cry for the racism that we’ve faced as Asian-Americans and the shame we’ve endured.  We cry for the Black-American community who keep losing their children to unjust murder.  We cry for the family of police officers who grow more and more fearful of the nature of their jobs.  We cry for justice to be brought upon evildoers.  We cry in frustration for the pandemic and our sense of helplessness right now.  We cry because we’re worried, anxious and sad.  We don’t know what the future holds.  We cry because we know we’re not in control and only God can heal our land and heal our hearts.  We cry because inside of our hearts is a deep longing for heaven, and this earthly existence is filled with pain and suffering.

These two Psalms can be helpful in expressing our personal and communal lament before God. Psalm 27 (personal lament) and Psalm 79 (communal lament).  We can pray through these Psalms by reading each couplet of poetry, and praying through the things that come up as we read it.

Lastly, let’s remember the goal.  As Christians, we are looking forward to this day, as shown us in Revelation 7:9-10 – 

“[9] After this I looked, and behold, a great multitude that no one could number, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, with palm branches in their hands, [10] and crying out with a loud voice, “Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!” 

This is our great hope.  This is why dealing with racism in our hearts and in our communities is crucial.  It’s the clearest version of heaven we can have on this side.  Let’s fight sin in our heart and in our world by keeping this vision in front of us.