Black Lives Matter Sunday (Dec. 14th)
America is racially divided and needs the Church to heal its divisions. Great strides have been made in civil rights and racial reconciliation over the past century, of course, but America still experiences racial divisions. If the Church of Jesus Christ cannot unite at this hour, how can we expect America to be united, when it has no spiritual foundation for unity?
Because black lives matter, and because America needs the Church to heal its lingering racial divisions, we ask I ask that churches everywhere to join the Church of God in Christ on Sunday, December 14, 2014, and pray for the following things:
- Pray during the service that God would bless the ministries of multicultural churches, enlarging their territory through Spirit-guided influence on the communities where they minister.
- Pray that God would unite the hearts of all Spirit-filled believers, so that together, we would become a Repairer of Broken Walls, Restorer of Streets with Dwellings (Isaiah 58:12) in our nation.
- Pray for law enforcement and judicial officers, especially Spirit-filled believers among them, that they would be servants of justice, reconciliation, and peace in the communities they serve.
Observing Black Lives Matter Sunday may seem controversial to some because of deep disagreement over the Michael Brown and Eric Garner cases. Perhaps we could lay aside personal convictions that would bring further division within the Church or within America. We can find points of unity and cooperation across racial lines by affirming the value of black lives and by praying for unity in our churches and our society this Sunday, December 14.
Let’s join together in observing Black Lives Matter Sunday with our brothers and sisters in Christ. Finally, at this Christmas season, may we take to heart once again the glorious announcement of the angel that the birth of Jesus is good news that will cause great joy for all the people (Luke 2:10, emphasis added)!
Note: The Pentecostal movement, to which both Church of God in Christ and the Assemblies of God belong, traces a large portion of its spiritual genealogy to the Azusa Street Revival in Los Angeles, California, at the start of the twentieth century. In that revival, led by a godly black man named William J. Seymour, the Spirit of Jesus Christ powerfully knit together the hearts of people who attended, regardless of race and ethnicity. For a shining moment at Azusa Street, when the surrounding culture was segregated by color, the color line was washed away in the Blood, as Frank Bartleman famously put it. Unfortunately, the forces of segregation reasserted themselves among white Pentecostals, and for many decades thereafter, they allowed the spirit of Jim Crow into their churches.
(Statement of Assemblies of God General Superintendent George O. Wood)
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