I came across a video through social media this week that made me think. The Guardian recently released a video in their opinion section that makes a very simple point about racism (if you watch the video, I will warn you that there is some course language).
The video’s speaker, in talking about racism, makes a distinction between what he calls “non-racists” and “anti-racists”. A non-racist is described as someone who does not take part in racist activities or endorse racist activity. A non-racist is someone who is content to simply stand back and not be part of the problem. The picture painted of an anti-racist, however, is someone who is actively working against racism. They are someone who is not part of the problem, but they are more than that—they are being part of the solution.
I wonder if this same logic can be applied to our churches in how we approach poverty? When we talk about poverty, especially in churches, many of us are content to state that we believe in alleviating poverty, and that we would never endorse actions that knowingly create poverty. But how many of us are doing something about it? How many of us are actually working to reduce poverty in our world?
This is the idea behind Session 2 of Pov.ology (posted below), titled “Putting Your Money Where Your Mouth Is”. Christianity is not a faith meant only for our minds and hearts, it is also meant for our world. It is meant to transform us and our communities. Its meant to be lived, not only believed. It is a faith that calls us to draw near to heart of God, and then it sends us out as God’s ambassadors with the very presence of God going with us. May we as Christians not just stand there with our beliefs and statements of faith, but may we live them out faithfully. As James 1:22 says, “Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.”
So don’t just stand there.