“We need a black person over at that table. And this table needs a white person.”
Such sentences were spoken a little over a month ago. 66 of us from the Central Texas Conference were on a Civil Rights Road Trip which took us through Arkansas, Tennessee, Mississippi, Alabama, and back home to Texas over the space of MLK Weekend. The purpose of the trip was to re-connect today’s youth with the Civil Rights Movement and to help them understand that young people carried much of that movement on their shoulders.
Of the 66 of us on the trip, about 25 were black, and about 40 were white.
Even though the focus of the trip clearly involved removing racial barriers, we found that we tended, as a group, to self-segregate. At meals, or on the charter buses that carried us, we found that unless we were intentional about doing otherwise, we sat with, ate with, people the same color as ourselves.
Hence the calls, at one meal later in our trip, for integration.
I don’t know about your life, but mine is still a long ways from integrated. Though I live among a very diverse (racially) population, I still tend to spend most of my time with people who look a lot like me.
In the Kingdom of God, we really don’t get that option. The Kingdom of God is made up of people from every “tribe, language, people, and nation.”
For the rest of this month, would you join me in being intentional about spending time with people who look a little less like you?