Lentz Suggests Some Practicals
It would be helpful, said Lentz, if believers fought racism with some of the principles we are using to fight COVID-19. For example, we should act as though we were all racist, just as we have been acting as though we all might have the virus. “The reality is you could be more racist than you think,” he said. “I don’t think I’m a racist man. I don’t want to be, but I love you enough as my brother to go look at it again.”
It does not help to compare ourselves to others and to comfort ourselves by thinking that at least we are not as racist as other people are. What we should do is compare ourselves to God and whether we measure up to his love for justice. In the Old Testament, we see that God wants “oceans of it.”
“So unless I’m part of the oceans of justice team, I’m not doing enough,” said Lentz. “I’m a part of the problem.” When George Floyd was murdered, the pastor asked himself if he was contributing to the problem more than he was to the solution. He concluded the answer was yes and started making some practical changes.
These include taking teaching moments with his children, as well as marching in protests. Acho asked the pastor what he would say to a white person reluctant to march with a group of black people in a protest because it feels disingenuous. “Welcome to being black in America,” said Lentz, “to being the only person who doesn’t really know if you fit in.” The fact that a white person even has the option to choose not to participate is in itself an example of racism.
Both Lentz and Acho offered calls to action at the end of their conversation. Lentz encouraged viewers, “Don’t be intimidated and do not minimize what you have.” It does not matter who you are or where you live in the country. We all have something to contribute to the fight against racial injustice. “I think there are a lot more good people out there that want to help, but they feel overwhelmed,” he said. “Don’t buy that lie. The hope of the world is the individual that cares.”
Acho closed by mentioning Jesus’ parable of the Good Samaritan. When the priest passed by the man beaten and left for dead, the priest was likely thinking, “If I stop, what will happen to me?” The Levite who passed by probably thought the same. But the Good Samaritan asked himself, “If I don’t help this man, what will happen to him?”
“So,” said Acho, “I encourage you to be like the Good Samaritan and ask yourself, ‘If I don’t help the oppressed, what will happen to them?’”