Posts tagged ‘Black’

September 26, 2012

Celebrity Stupidity

by pastortimfowler

The Freedom of Speech

Everyone loves a celebrity. We seek their autograph, their picture, and if you are running for public office, you seek their endorsement. But this brings to mind the old saying, be careful what you ask for, you just might get it.
Today I read about Madonna, (and I thought that she was a has been but I guess she is still a celebrity), and her endorsement of the president for the upcoming election. OUCH! She called him a black Muslim. She should thank her star on the famous Broadway walk that she is not a Republican who said something like that. Why she would be ran out-of-town. But, she is a not and she can say whatever she wants too and not have much backlash. But let me go on record as saying that I think her remarks are absolutely ridiculous and that she should apologize to the president and to the country. I will wait patiently.
Why does she have to call him black? He is our president. I never refer to any president as white or black or Hispanic or any other ethnicity. Is she a racist? If I were to call him black and criticize him I would be called a racist. Does she think that people are stupid? It is obvious that he is not green or blue. I thought that people were people and the color of their skin did not matter. At least that is how I was raised in my middle-income home with white parents and siblings. FYI…we had a cat that was black.
But, Madonna has said stupid stuff in the past and got away with it and it is her right as an American, even though she is white, to say what ever she wants. Freedom of speech does not limit stupid speech and her speech has been stupid at times. But as a celebrity, when she says something, people listen, even if it is offensive to one group or another.
Would it matter if the president was a Muslim? He says that he is a Christian and that doesn’t seem to be a problem. The Republican candidate says that he is a Mormon and I really don’t care. I want to have a president who stands for all Americans of every race and religion. If the president was a Muslim, he would still be the president that was sworn to uphold the constitution of the USA. Does being a Muslin or a Christian or a Jew or a Mormon, or an atheist change that? I hope not and don’t think so.
So why did Madonna say that the president was a black Muslim? The only conclusion that I can come to is that I can think of is that celebrity stupidity is still a part of free speech and as offensive as it may be and as stupid as it may be, she has a right to say whatever she wants in this great country that has great men who serve as president no matter what color they were born or what religion they follow.
GOD BLESS AMERICA!!!

March 28, 2012

Justice

by pastortimfowler

Justice.jpg

According to dictionary.com, this is the definition of Justice: the quality of being just; righteousness, equitableness, or moral rightness. It does not mean do what you think is right. It does infer that there is a higher authority that determines what is right. I believe that higher authority is God. Otherwise that leaves the whole idea of right and wrong in the hands of mankind, who has the tendency of injecting feelings over facts. I have written about right and wrong and where we get the idea of what they are. It has little to do with feelings, but few will admit it. Justice is a word being tossed around by many in cases like I wrote about yesterday. Justice in America is accomplished through a system of laws and courts and civil authority, not random groups who feel like they have a better way.
Before I go any further I want to respond to one comment from a reader about yesterday’s blog. I said that clergy needed to speak out about the threats of taking the law into your own hands and this person said that there are no black pastors or churches that were not racist or had the guts to speak out. This is one of those times that I would like to slap someone who reads my blog. You could not be more wrong. The only reason I feel that I can speak out on such a sensitive subject and be as bold as I am is because my friends know my heart and know me. They know that the truth sets us free and not our opinions. Many of my friends are black and pastor churches full of people who love God and other people, regardless of race. While I appreciate your opinion, I take offense at your racist comment about my friends and brothers in Christ.
Now back to justice. The goal of justice is to make things just, or right. Right and wrong were never meant to be subject to feelings. They were never meant to be gray areas or ambiguous. There is a difference between and law and right and wrong. A law can be something that is totally based on feelings. For instance, the current health care law is a feeling that everyone has a right to health insurance. I can find no place that ever gives us a clear-cut right or wrong concerning this. If the law remains, it will be wrong not to follow the details of the law, but it is still based on a feeling.
Right and wrong is where there is a clear-cut determination, regardless of feelings. Murder is wrong. Stealing is wrong. Sexual abuse is wrong. These are things that almost every civil society in the world agree on. It is something that comes from the very moral fiber of humanity, which I believe comes from God. It is right to help the poor, but how, is left open for interpretation. It is right to work for what you have and to provide for your family. It is right to love and protect one another.
But justice is the process of taking a wrong and to the best of the ability of the legal system, making it right. That may mean to those who have stolen, that they give back. To those who have hurt another that they lose the ability to hurt again. The process most often takes time, and because of the human element, can sometimes make mistakes. That still does not give anyone the authority to take this into there own hands. We must first give the justice system time to work. In America we are innocent until proven guilty. We are protected from those who would take vengeance into there own hands and given a method to defend ourselves against all accusers.
The bottom line to this whole idea of justice comes down to God. He is the only righteous judge. He is the only one who knows the hearts of man and has promised that no sin will go unpunished. He did not limit those sins to the ones that we feel are worst, but to all sin that has separated us from Him. He made a way for the punishment for sin to be given to another. One who would be our sacrifice and take the wrath of God so that we may receive total forgiveness. Not based on who we are or how good we say we are, but totally based on His love for us and His hatred of sin that causes us to be separated from Him. God can do this because only a righteous judge can bring true justice with no influence from human imperfections. God has done this and will do this for those who repent.
Although His justice is firm and final, He has not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain mercy and forgiveness through Jesus Christ, our advocate, the Savior of humanity. Vengeance is Mine says the Lord. His judgment is true and His mercy is greater. Justice will prevail.

March 27, 2012

Justice or Self-Righteous?

by pastortimfowler

gun

Why is there not an uproar about the New Black Panthers putting a bounty out for the guy in Florida who shot the teen? I know that this is a horrible incident and that many were hurt by it, but what gives these people the right to put a bounty on the head of someone who has not even been charged with breaking a law? In America, we are innocent until proven guilty and in this case the man has not even been accused by law enforcement of breaking a law.
I am not a lawyer and I am not an expert on the particular law that this man is not accused of breaking. I am a legal concealed weapons carrier and in my state there is a similar law on the books that says we can stand our ground and defend ourselves if we feel threatened. It does seem to be a bit strange that we can shoot another person because of a feeling, but that is how the law is written. But by taking the course and legally obtaining and carrying a weapon, I do not automatically support and agree with the law. However, I am covered under that law, regardless of how I feel or others feel. This is not my fault nor is it the fault of the shooter in Florida. So why is he the target of such hatred? Where is the outrage not over those who publicly threaten an innocent man with harm, just because they disagree with a law?
It would be nice if there was not a race issue to be talked about, but only the discussion of whether or not the law was broken and if there is a disagreement with the law, then taking the proper steps to have the law changed. That is how a civil society should operate. But when we have groups making threats of taking the law into their own hands, we bring hatred into the picture and civility is left by the wayside. Sadly the race issue threatens to blow things into an all out race war. This bothers me.
Every elected official should be stepping into the public’s eye to stress the legal and civil ways to handle such issues. They should condemn any group who threaten to step outside the boundaries of the law and not back down until the public outcry is for true justice, not vigilante efforts to under mind the law. The media should condemn and expose anyone who tries to subvert the legal system. Clergy should take to the pulpits to remind the church of its obligation to follow the laws of the land and it appointed officials. Every law-abiding citizen should be on guard against groups who put themselves above the law and we should not stand for any of those who are supposed to speak out for the laws of the land if they neglect to do so.
My heart breaks for this young man who was killed. There is never a good way to lose a loved one. But I also feel bad for the man who shot him. Not because I agree with what he did. I was not there and I only have the reports from the media to form my opinions. But his life is ruined without the help of a group like the New Black Panthers getting involved. And I also believe that if this man acted wrongly, he will be exposed for it. There is a process for such things to work themselves out and I believe that for the most part it is a good and just system.
It is easy to understand the anger that can be stirred when an event like this takes place. But anger is not a means to destroy, but a means to make things right. God’s design for anger is to fix the injustice and restore things to it proper bearings. Human anger is often distorted and dangerous, but that is why we have laws and a system of justice. Ultimately I believe that no matter the fault of this situation, God will keep track and make it right. He is the Righteous Judge and no sin will go unpunished. But in some cases, only God knows the true injustice and in that case we must trust Him to make things right.
I pray for the families involved. I pray for peace and I pray for the truth to come out. But I also pray that those who try to take the law into their own hands would be exposed for the menace to society that they are. They are not seeking justice. They are claiming to be self-righteous and only God can do that.

September 14, 2011

Racism

by pastortimfowler

Tonight is the first night of a city-wide revival that has been planned for several months now. I have had the privilege of working with about 10 other pastors in trying to put this together. Our goal was to get black, white, and Latino pastors together with their churches to address racism and how the church can help overcome this stress on society. As it turned out there are 9 black pastors and me, who just happens to be white.
I can’t help being white, I was born that way. It runs in our family and many of us have had other white children. My wife’s mother came from a family that had 12 white kids and so far all of our children have been white and now our grandchildren are white too. So this seems to be something that we are stuck with.
I do not believe that I am racist. I grew up a Navy brat and was always around other races of people. I don’t remember my parents ever using derogatory words to describe folks of different color and it wasn’t until I was in the third grade that I remember hearing the word “nigger”. When I did hear it, I thought that the person was uneducated and could not speak proper English, or well, in this case Spanish, because I thought that they were trying to say negro, the Spanish word for black. Little did I know that it was such an offensive word to those who were black, or negro. It is funny how one man’s stupidity can be another man’s butt kickin’.
I am of the opinion that racism is a choice that we make. I believe that as long as we are willing to meet people for who they are instead of the color of their skin, that we can get along just fine. I also believe that the color does come with cultural differences and differences can cause misunderstanding and misunderstanding can cause division. But, where there is difference and misunderstanding there is a great opportunity for communication to bring forth understanding and unity. If I don’t like a person who happens to be black, I am not a racist. If I don’t like a person because they are black then, that, makes me a racist.
God says that He has given His church the ministry of reconciliation. It is our service to others to reconcile differences and spread the love of Jesus Christ. God is not a respecter of persons. He does not see color, He sees a helpless sinner in need of a Savior. When Christ died, He died for the human race not a specific race. That means that those of us who proclaim to be Christians should be willing to lay down our differences in order to reach anyone in need of Jesus.
I am perfectly fine with a church that has all black or all white people as their members as long as it is not a purposeful effort. We certainly have churches who are all from the country or the city and that is not a problem. But I want to know that if a white church has a need and a black church can help or the reverse, that no one sees the color before they see Jesus. We are one body, the Body of Christ.
I pray that we can make a stride over the next few days to help people see that racism is wrong. I believe that it is a sin against God who made one human and from that one human we all are related. But even greater than that blood line, we who are of the Body of Christ ,also have a common blood line; the blood of Jesus, and through that blood we are all reconciled to God

 

May 9, 2011

Black, White, and Shades of all

by pastortimfowler

I have been asked to participate in the planning of a city-wide revival in Rock Hill SC. The goal is to have black, white and Hispanic churches come together to show unity and Christ’s love to all. I am really excited about this and a bit overwhelmed at the task. I know that with God all things are possible, but I also know that with man all things can get messed up.
I love church. It is the heart of Jesus after His heart for those who are lost. Jesus said that He would build His church and nothing, not even Hell would stop Him. Then He goes and puts me in the middle of things as a pastor, and now part coordinator for this event. I know that He knows everything and that He would never ask me to do anything that He doesn’t plan on being successful, but wow, this is big.
In everyday life, white people, black people and other shades of people are really different. Many whites don’t like blacks and Hispanics, many blacks don’t like whites and Hispanics, and many Hispanics don’t like blacks and whites. Those are the stupid people. (Lighten up, I am not talking about you). It is sad that many of those who don’t like others who are a different color go to church on Sunday and claim to be Christians. That is hard to understand because Christ died for all colors of people and not just the color of our choosing.
I love that churches do have such diversity. Some are black, some are white, some are Hispanic, and some have shades of all. I love the black churches that I have preached in. I love the Hispanic churches I have preached in. I love the white churches I have preached in. I love the multi-colored churches I have preached in. What do they all have in common? I preached in them. I guess that just says that I love to preach. But I do love the people in each one of them. And I know that they all showed me a lot of love.
The problem that I see is that once church is over we get caught up in life. An life says that we are different and no one can deny it. Differences are often turned into right and wrong instead of an appreciation of the differences as God’s creation and appreciating them. False assumptions often fuel the fire that one color hates the other color and in the end people see a church divided instead of a Savior that loves them all.
God is going to have His way. We need to understand that we can be part of His way or moved out-of-the-way and become insignificant. I want to be used by God in any way He sees fit. Of course I would often like it if He would check with me and get my input before we do anything. (Like that’s gonna happen).
I do love the church. I love people who make up the church and I would love it if we could get together and pour out God’s love from every color of person God has created. Please pray for this event. Pray for wisdom and blessing to make it happen. Pray for people to come together in unity and God’s love and forget about skin color for a little while.
On Sunday we can have an all white or black or Hispanic meeting. But when church is over Sunday morning until we meet again, everyone who was not in one of those churches Sunday needs to see Jesus, not a person of any specific ethnicity. Jesus died for all sin and for all people and he loves black, white, and shades of all.