|Christopher G. Green|
I had lunch with a very dear friend and brother. He and his wife have been instrumental in connecting us with the faith community in this region, bringing us into the confidence of many church leaders. We've been in fellowship, friendship and covenant relationship with them for more than 10 years, now.
For both of us, this lunch was a time to reconnect and get brought up to speed. In the midst of our conversation he asked some very sensitive questions, of which he felt that I was the only person he could direct them to and get honest answers, without being offended. He's White. I'm Black. We are worlds apart in life's experiences and therefore, our views can be vastly different.
He asked if it was true that the police stop and pull over African Americans for no reason.
I responded, "O' YES! I've been stopped by the cops just about all of my life. It's just a normal part of life where I grew up."
I gave him that response even as I recalled being stopped as early as 8 years old for merely walking down the street. All through my teenage years, young adult years, and right up until we moved to Harrisburg, being stopped by the police was just a normal part of life in St. Louis, Missouri.
I watched my dear friend's eyes become filled with tears as he observed the casual, matter-of-fact manner in which I answered him. In that moment, I knew why providence had brought our lives together. My friend and brother was genuinely touched by the experiences of my life. He did not minimize my experience. He did not rationalize it away. He did not dismiss it with over-spiritualization. He did not try to offer any answers, reasons, or excuses. He simply absorbed my life's experience into himself and he was visibly moved by it.
He asked a couple of more questions, based upon my first answer, but those were matters of statistics and trends that neither of us could explain or substantiate. The key moment had already come upon us, though. I felt it was another one of those historical moments that happens in an obscure setting.
Across this state, many are calling for racial unity events across Pennsylvania. Well, this conversation was a manifestation of how that desire is going to be answered.
I once wrote in one of our blogs about the need for various ethnic and cross-cultural efforts to be unified in purpose and how coming together had to be much more than big corporate gatherings that yield no fruit or change in our hearts and homes. Little did I know that I'd be sitting in a restaurant, experiencing another personal connection that could make a tangible impact on race relations.
I will forever be deeply touched by the look in my brother's eyes as I answered his sincere questions. What happened between us, in that moment, was the level of dialogue and understanding, I know, is going to be a vital part of what must happen to bring racial unity all across this region and state.
So, I encourage you today, to not only look to the huge politically-correct gatherings to experience these kind of moments, but allow these type of unexpected questions to invade your conversation with a co-worker or friend. The strained climate in America today is going to set up countless one-on-one meetings like this, that we can use to break down barriers and flood our hearts, homes and communities. When it comes to interracial conversations, you and I must choose to treat others the way we want to be treated. You never know who needs to drink from the overflow of your golden-ruled life.
Article written by: Golden Rule Ambassador Christopher G. Green
World Peace Ambassador, Dr. Clyde Rivers calls Chris and Carol Green the leading skilled experts in rebuilding, restoring and renewing hearts and homes. The Green are certified master life coaches who founded the Fruitful Life Network, Inc. an innovative community care and coaching outreach. They are international columnist/writers with the award winning team of Dr. Clyde Rivers and iChange Nations Social Media News™.