By Julia Chin, Contributing Writer
In 1963, Martin Luther King Jr. said, “It is appalling that the most segregated hour of Christian America is at 11 o’clock on Sunday morning.” This statement still holds true today, but there is an even bigger problem: no one is really bothered by it.
We are homogenous beings; we like to be comfortable. Trust me, I know, we are all very different. Our backgrounds, perspectives and personal preferences have a lot to do with the racial division within the church, but scripture calls man to be reconciled to God and to each other.
I think one way we can begin to implement this reconciliation is to unify our churches.
According to the Huffington Post, in 2010, 12.5 percent of all protestant churches and 27.1 percent of Catholic/Orthodox churches had multiracial congregations. While the percentage continues to rise, those numbers are still eerily small.
The book of Revelation talks about how there will be a new heaven and a new earth, one where the former things such as racial tension, discrimination and bias will all be gone. This unification is something the Church should be advocating for and striving towards now. As Christians, we are not called to be comfortable. When we remain in areas or situations with people that are all the same as us we rob ourselves of the chance to reach out to or lean about those who are different. This causes us to become complacent and that is not a mindset that can further the Kingdom of God. Even within our own ethnicities, we are all called to leave our comfort zone and be radicals.
We can begin to implement these changes simply by becoming involved in organizations, activities or clubs in which different kinds of people are participating. That doesn’t have to be racially different, just start doing things that require you to walk out of your comfort zone.
I came from living outside of New York City to attending college in Wilmore, Kentucky. This was a huge change for me. However, I believed God was calling me out of the security I was living in and into this new community. In submitting to His will, I have learned so much about different cultures and a lot about myself as well.
Samuel Perry, a researcher from the University of Chicago said, “Segregated churches breed segregated lives.” I believe God desires an all nations church and to do so we need to take it into our own hands. We need to begin breaking down the barriers between races rather than waiting on society to do so for us.
It is humbling to enter into something new where you can admit that you are not comfortable and you do not really know how to handle the situation, but you let God lead you through it all the same.
“For he himself is our peace, who has made the two groups one and has destroyed the barrier, the dividing wall of hostility, by setting aside in his flesh the law with its commands and regulations. His purpose was to create in himself one new humanity out of the two, thus making peace, and in one body to reconcile both of them to God through the cross, by which he put to death their hostility.” Ephesians 2:14-14.