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3 Leadership Lessons the SBC Can Learn From Starbucks, Roseanne and ABC

3. Reconciliation does not happen without repentance and reparations. 

Within the SBC we are quick to speak about longing for reconciliation, yet slow to repent and dismissive of any solutions that would rebuild and repair what has been broken. Resolutions are not reparations. This is an intrinsically biblical concept. When Zacchaeus was convicted over his thievery in tax collecting, he didn’t stand in the town square and issue a public apology and draft a resolution to promise never to steal again. His repentance was coupled with reparations. He apologized by repaying what was taken. Here’s the lesson: Words are important, but they do nothing to repair what has been damaged.

A monumental and historical approach for the SBC would be this: Kick off the 2018 SBC Convention by issuing a full-throated apology to women, people of color and the LGBT community for all the many ways over the years we have spoken damaging words and excluded them from important conversations that could produce Gospel-centered human flourishing within the convention. Then, let’s take a portion of our convention time to have minority leaders speak to pastors and convention leaders on how to lead our churches in fighting for a whole-life pro-life ethic, ensuring that our people fight for every minority human flourishing within our church walls. This would be words and actions. Repentance and reparations are what produce reconciliation.  

This is an unlikely move that our convention will take this year, but as leaders we cannot miss or dismiss these cultural moments, particularly when movements like #metoo surface within our own walls. We can’t change how leaders across the country respond to certain issues, but we can certainly affect how we serve and shepherd our own people to healing, reconciliation and flourishing for the beauty of the proclamation of the Gospel.

This article originally appeared here.