As the chant, “Black Lives Matter” holds center stage across our nation, there is this growing counter call, “All Lives Matter”. This response derives from those who want to retain their own sense of value and not be excluded from the equation. Does one life hold more value over another life . . . Whose lives matter? This is a question which comes up more often than we may think. We have come to that place where we question the value of a life. Does my life matter more than yours? Does the life of an unborn child matter more than the life of the mother? Does the life of a teenaged Leukemia patient matter more than the life of a cancer-stricken senior? Do Black Lives matter more than All Lives?

In this struggle for self-worth, we contemplate our own value in comparison to others, forgetting the connectedness in our creation. The Bible clearly tells us how we were formed by God, made in His image, and the very essence of our life was breathed into us by our creator.[1] There is only one mold in which all human beings were created from. It has only been through the process of time, locations, and environments that the exterior features of God’s creation have changed into the many shades and shapes we have in our world today. Yet the blood which runs through our veins and the breath of His Spirit which brought forth our very existence remains the same.

As a man of faith, I am troubled and saddened by the pain, hurt, and brokenness I see across our nation. As a man born of a black father and white mother, I live a life constantly burdened by the backlash and attacks generated by this tug of war between black and white. As a man of faith, my hope resides in Christ and is energized by the promises expounded in the Holy Writ. And as a man of faith and color, I stand against the injustices of the past and the systemic failures of a system which continues to place the lives of every black person in jeopardy.

Yes, all lives matter – your life and my life matter. This has never been disputed by a black people who stand up and say their lives matter. The clarion call, “black lives matter”, comes from a people who have been separated from God’s original creation by generational disparities and overt racism. Consider this beautiful illustration of our Father in heaven providing His own response through the Apostle Matthew. The story tells of a shepherd who owns a hundred sheep. This shepherd left the ninety-nine to go after the one who was lost and becomes happier at that moment in finding the one over the ninety and nine who remained safe. You see, God Himself will place a singular focus on the one life in jeopardy over the many who are safe.[2]

Now, let me expound beyond one life to one race; a black community who in this hour are a people in peril. These people, black and brown are connected to every human being through the blood and spirit of our creator. In their anguish from the innumerable injustices and the inequality crippling them, their cry of crisis echoes across the land. As it reverberates from little towns to big cities; from one state to the next, our civil society, our nation as a whole has been jolted to its very core. We stand, some in awe, others in anger. We walk, march, and watch as many question. . . what now?

Well, consider this fact; more than 80% of Americans hold to a faith in God.[3]This brings us back to our united origin. We, a people of faith and conscience are being challenged in this very hour. As the world watches and all of heaven stands in silence, there is an urgency in the spirit, a calling for a renewal, a reawakening if you may, to be reconnected to the Spirit of God.

The need in this hour is to move beyond petty politics and derisive optics. We are being called to march into our houses of worship, to hold vigils in the public square as we bend our knees in prayer. We must pray for our nation, pray for our leaders, and pray for a black people who have been oppressed for years. Let us seek God’s face and repent for our nation and for devaluing the greatest of God’s creation – you and me. The hope and salvation of America depends on the prayers of a people who will see beyond color, ethnicity, age and religion. This mandate from God is the foundational step to our solution:

If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land”. (2 Chronicles 7:14)

[1] Genesis 1:26

[2] Matthew 18:12-14