We are moving tomorrow! PTL! I cannot wait to get out of this moldy apartment and into our new home. I know this is a strange thing to post in the middle of moving, but I do have this message fresh in my heart and mind…so I want to write down and share with you. This is kind of a vulnerable post.
Yesterday, I was running errands for some random things before the move. I walked into this one store to look for a plastic bin for my Christmas decorations (they have been sitting in a bag under our bed). But when I walked into this one store, the employee kind of under his breath, but loud enough for me to hear said “No Chinese people” (in the local language). To be honest, it took me about 5 steps into the store for it to translate what he said in my head and realize he was referring to ME! What triggered me to even think twice about his words was when the other store employee obnoxiously burst into laughter at his “joke.”
Of course after it registered in my head, I walked out because I suddenly lost my motivation to shop. As I was walking out he politely asked me, “Oh there is nothing you need here?” I ignored him.
I was so annoyed.
My first reaction was that I wanted to punch him, but let’s be real, I am not very strong… or at least I wanted to call him a jerk. But I don’t know the word for “jerk” here… #languageproblems 🙄
Well as I walked home, I was repenting to the Lord for my angry response and I keep speaking out forgiveness towards the employee. Honestly, I was feeling conflicted between remorse for my angry reaction and defensiveness in my heart for being made fun of.
(I am not Chinese by the way, but I have a brother-in-law who is Chinese and nieces and a nephew who are 1/2 Chinese and I have tons of Chinese friends that are very dear to me).
Last night, my husband and I rented a movie online called Hidden Figures. It is about these 3 African-American women who worked for NASA in the 1960’s and beyond. This movie is based on a true story and the story is incredible and so inspiring. These women had to break through 2 very thick ceilings because not only were they living in a time when racial segregation was legal but they were also women working in a very male dominated field.
I was deeply touched by the movie. I highly recommend it to everyone! (Disclaimer: There is cursing in it, but the message was so good, I would still let my older kids watch this.)
This morning, I was reading this book by Mike Bickle. He said something about God sometimes allowing us to experience painful things in order to develop humility in us, which in turn will give us compassion for others. He was actually applying this concept in a ministry context. But for whatever reason, I felt like the Lord was highlighting this in my life and why He might have allowed that incident to happen yesterday.
Growing up, I went to a school where I could literally count how many Asian people were in my grade on ONE HAND. I actually don’t need all 5 fingers because I think there were just 3 of us out of about 260 students. I got made fun of often for being Asian pretty much from K-12th grade. God has healed my heart a ton in this area, but I really had to spend a season deeply grieving the pain from my youth regarding racism and I had to intentionally forgive the people who had hurt me before I could really get healed.
As I have gotten older and I don’t live in America anymore, I confess, I have kind of lost touch with what is going on with the racial tensions there.
This morning, I noticed that the incident the happened to me yesterday, plus the movie I watched, deposited a greater compassion in my heart towards African-Americans and the pain they are experiencing, even today.
I am sorry to any of my friends at home who are facing any type of racism or discrimination…big or little. I do not pretend to know your pain. Your pain may be unseen to many, but it is very much seen by God.
This morning, I was also convicted that I need to show my kids more movies like Hidden Figures, so that they can have a visual understanding of how many trials, injustices, and obstacles African-Americans have needed to overcome and are still overcoming in America today.
I do not pretend to know all the answers to this massive racial issue in America, but I do want to raise more awareness, love, and compassion, in myself, my kids, and others.
Isaiah 53:3 says, He was despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief…
I am convinced yet again today that Jesus is the only answer for the world’s injustices. He faced the greatest injustice, an innocent man, being nailed to a shameful cross. He too was despised and rejected by man. He understands your sorrows! He knows your grief!
If you have pain in your heart today from any racial injustice in your life, I urge you to turn to the only one who can truly understand and heal you…Jesus. Allow Him to minister to your hurting heart.
If you read this post today but you have never really had to face discrimination and you don’t really know what I am talking about, I also ask you to turn to Jesus. Ask Him to give you His heart for this issue because I have NO DOUBT that He cares deeply about this. I also encourage you to dialogue in a loving, humble, and open way to your friends who are minorities and take some time to learn from them, if they are willing to share.
Another thing that was so inspiring about Hidden Figures was the unrelenting courage in these 3 women. They faced tremendous discrimination, yet they refused to back down. They persevered through discouragement. They did not grow bitter. They had faith that things could change and because they did not give up, things actually did change!
Whatever challenges you are facing today, I encourage you to not give up. Do not let bitterness overtake you. Forgive and bless your enemies…and as you do this, I have full confidence that God will give you healing. (FYI- I am also preaching to myself…)
Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.”
And he who was seated on the throne said, “Behold, I am making all things new.” Also he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.” Revelation 21:1-5