This last week has brought so much new awareness that it feels like it has been many weeks instead of just one. My whole life I have tried to see the insides of people when finding and choosing friends. So, I have friends of every orientation, nationality, color, and race. But I have never seen and understood what my friends of color were experiencing that made them unable to experience the same level of peace I do. The news has not covered the unreasonable deaths of those in the Black community until recently. I’m glad they are now.
At first when I heard the phrase “Black Lives Matter,” I didn’t understand what they were talking about. The phrase seemed to be in direct opposition to “police lives matter,” like one or the other had to prevail.
And having had wonderful friends in the police department, and having mourned the passing of at least one dear friend in the line of duty, it was a very confusing battle cry.
There are still those in the extremes who seem to think it means something fanatical. But my Black friend sent me this meme and it perfectly explains to me why it matters that we be involved in helping the black community right now.
Why We Must Take Note
In case you can’t see the image above, this child is holding a sign that says “We said: Black Lives Matter. We never said: ONLY Black lives matter. We know that all lives matter. We just need your help with #BlackLivesMatter for Black lives are in danger…” It’s a powerful and instructive image.
Somehow I missed the point of the Black Lives Matter mindset until this clarification. The lack of media coverage for the great injustices in our country has kept me in the dark. This image, and the stories coming to light, changed how I see this cause. And I feel we are all fundamentally much more on the same page than we ever thought.
Peace is Possible
Let me be clear: I am not saying that we need to take away privileges from anyone else to create a better world. The world that God would have us create is one where everyone is equal; where everyone is treated well and given the peace to grow up in a world of love and peace.
We are all God’s children and He keeps track of us all. He loves us completely and communicates with us in the ways that are most meaningful to each of us individually.
He wouldn’t take that time, put forth that effort, if every last one of us wasn’t vitally important to Him.
President Nelson Speaks Out
Our prophet recently spoke about racism, and it was so uplifting and enlightening. I know he is truly God’s mouthpiece. He said:
We join with many throughout this nation and around the world who are deeply saddened at recent evidences of racism and a blatant disregard for human life. We abhor the reality that some would deny others respect and the most basic of freedoms because of the color of his or her skin.
We are also saddened when these assaults on human dignity lead to escalating violence and unrest.
The Creator of us all calls on each of us to abandon attitudes of prejudice against any group of God’s children. Any of us who has prejudice toward another race needs to repent!
During the Savior’s earthly mission, He constantly ministered to those who were excluded, marginalized, judged, overlooked, abused, and discounted. As His followers, can we do anything less? The answer is no! We believe in freedom, kindness, and fairness for all of God’s children!
Let us be clear. We are brothers and sisters, each of us the child of a loving Father in Heaven. His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, invites all to come unto Him—“black and white, bond and free, male and female,” (2 Nephi 26:33). It behooves each of us to do whatever we can in our spheres of influence to preserve the dignity and respect every son and daughter of God deserves.
President Nelson asks the world to change
President Nelson continued:
Any nation can only be as great as its people. That requires citizens to cultivate a moral compass that helps them distinguish between right and wrong.
Illegal acts such as looting, defacing, or destroying public or private property cannot be tolerated. Never has one wrong been corrected by a second wrong. Evil has never been resolved by more evil.
We need to foster our faith in the Fatherhood of God and the brotherhood of man.
We need to foster a fundamental respect for the human dignity of every human soul, regardless of their color, creed, or cause.
And we need to work tirelessly to build bridges of understanding rather than creating walls of segregation.
I plead with us to work together for peace, for mutual respect, and for an outpouring of love for all of God’s children.
Love and Peace
After reading President Nelson’s words, I was filled with peace. That is exactly what God wants of us right now: He wants us to up our game and live a higher, holier law.
We have come so far from the days of Rosa Parks and Martin Luther King. Their bravery inspires us to this day. But until people of every color are treated with kindness and respect equally in every situation, we still have work to do.
I heard about a candlelight vigil for George Floyd and others killed by police brutality in Provo, Utah. They were chanting “Love and Peace” and carrying signs with the same words on them. The vigil had police and Black men and women gathered together.
Alex Boye spoke and it showed me a unified group of people who truly want change, unity, and peace. That is the answer to our situation. Black lives are in danger, and we can make a difference. We can live in love and peace and bring the same to our fellow man.
Peace is Coming
Violence and breaking laws are not part of God’s way. We need to examine our own hearts, our own prejudices, and refocus on living the Lord’s way. We can show love and kindness to those around us.
And I need to point out that we each wear an invisible pair of glasses that colors our view of the world. Let’s examine our hearts and our invisible paradigm glasses and be sure we are living as God would have us live. Love one another. When we do so, we will all be able to live together in love and peace.
This is such a wonderful time to be alive. Yes, you heard me right. Despite all that 2020 has thrown at us, God put you and I here now because we can change the world. We can teach the future generation just what it looks like to live in love and peace. And we will feel stronger and more peaceful and godly as we go forward in the loving work of bringing peace to ALL mankind.
Abby is capable and caring. She is learning more about Autism and parenthood every day. And even though she is the first to admit she makes a lot of mistakes, she is so grateful to be on this journey. She comes from a family with many autistic members. She invites us to join her, as she shares her adventures. She wishes to emphasize that Autism is a difference not a defect. If you or a family member have autism, Abby wants you to know that this isn't a bad thing. And you or your loved one are not sick or broken. Together we will teach the world this new language.