Saturday, August 21, 2010
I am a African who lives in America. At times I refer to myself as African American because my ancestors have been in this country since 1785. The exact date that I listed comes my family reunion book. But now I am referring to myself as an African who resides in America. I purposefully do this to remind myself that I am connected to all Africans and peoples of African descent around the ENTIRE world. We can not think of Africans as just those who live on the continent Africa. Africans and all Black people who are scattered around the world are Africans who just happen to live in other places and have different cultural traditions. This is just my opinion and you do not have to accept it my friend. But I strongly feel that you should at least ponder the thought and in time adapt the idea into your own life. I will share with you why I feel this is of the utmost importance for people of color. Why this ideological UNITY is important for all Black peoples' futures!
Unity is so important that the Bible mentions it as essential for believers in Jesus Christ to grow in HIM. "As a prisoner for the LORD, then, I urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received....Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace. (Ephesians 4:1,3).
Consider this scripture, "May the GOD who gives endurance and encouragement give you a spirit of unity among yourselves as you follow CHRIST JESUS (Romans 15:5).
I feel that unity is of the utmost importance for people of African descent globally to heal and recover from the damage that has been inflicted upon us. But the first step to healing is to believe in JESUS CHRIST who loves you and is the answer to all of the pain on this world. After that, then its important that we learn to love and respect one another and not think we are better than one another.
Over the years, I have been blessed to meet people from all over the world: Vietnamese, Chinese, Korean, Caribbean, Nigerians, Ghanaian, Tanzanian, etc.
It has been a humble joy spending time with people from all over the world but one thing troubles me in regards to people of African descent. We are not unified as we need to be.
For people of African descent most of our disunity is not our fault. Consider a "plan" that was introduced to the slaveowners within the United States during 1712. The following quote is taken from the Willie Lynch Letter.
"I guarantee every one of you that, if installed correctly, it will control the slaves for at least 300 years. My method is simple.....I have outlined a number of differences among the slaves; and I take these differences and make them bigger. I use fear, distrust and envy for control purposes......On top of my list is “AGE,” but it’s there only because it starts with an “a.” The second is “COLOR” or shade. There is intelligence, size, sex, sizes of plantations, status on plantations, attitude of owners, whether the slaves live in the valley, on a hill, East, West, North, South, have fine hair, course hair, or is tall or short...... Now that you have a list of differences, I shall give you an outline of action, but before that, I shall assure you that distrust is stronger than trust and envy stronger than adulation, respect or admiration. If used intensely for one year, the slaves themselves will remain perpetually distrustful" (The Willie Lynch Letter).
This evil plan was not just used in the United States but also in the West Indies. This plan is a sample of what has been done. I propose not just to Africans who reside and ancestors are from America but to all Africans around the world.
Brothers and sisters directly from Africa may say "but I was not a slave". But I will suggest that you have been through slavery too. First of all, all people including myself are a slave to sin until we allow JESUS to serve as LORD and SAVIOR of our lives and then Africans around the world are slaves mentally (not all of us) but the majority of us are slaves in the mind. But in regards to sin EVERY person we are slaves to sin until JESUS becomes our SAVIOR.
JESUS says, "I tell you the truth, everyone who sins is a slave to sin". (John 8:34).
"For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of GOD" (Romans 3:23).
Even though we are all slaves to sin, JESUS died to free us ALL from sin.
"...just as CHRIST was raised from the dead through the glory of the FATHER, we too may live a new life" (Romans 6:4b).
JESUS came to give all of us new life. So once again, my friends, all of us are slaves to sin.
Now, people of African descent have been inflicted with mental slavery and in the past physical slavery. Our physical slavery in the West lasted for over 500 years and has ceased - but there is slavery in the Eastern world. But our mental slavery and disunity is global!
This disunity is so true and I have perpetrated it and I have felt the sting of it. Many who live in Africa and who migrate around the world say "oh I was never a slave, etc". But many of them still are.
WE are MENTAL SLAVES if we think we are better than other people.
WE are a MENTAL SLAVES if we feel our culture is better than someone else's and everyone who doesn't subscribe to our culture is inferior.
WE are a MENTAL SLAVES if we can only see others' flaws but can never see our own.
YOU are a MENTAL SLAVE if you are from Africa and you negatively look down on your African American brothers and sisters.
YOU are a MENTAL SLAVE if as an African American you think you are better than your African brothers and sisters.
YOU are a MENTAL SLAVE if you are a Caribbean you feel you are better than others.
The list is exhaustive. These thoughts have been implanted to us by those who want to stay in power and also these thoughts can come naturally because all of us and myself are sinners and in need of the love of GOD to transform our hearts towards love and not false pride.
In GOD's eyes, these thoughts are thoughts of deception and sin. GOD wants us to respect and love one another and not control one another.
Many of us of African descent realize that we are oppressed but we do not realize that the way out of this is unity. "The LORD said, 'If as one people speaking the same language they have begun to do this, then nothing they plan to do will be impossible for them" (Genesis 11:6).
We can see from the above statement that those who want to continue to dominate peoples' of African descent do not want us to love one another and be unified but GOD is saying that we MUST do this. We must surrender our pride, and feelings to dominate one another over to GOD.
We must encourage one another and stop hurting one another! Why do we hurt one another and then get mad at the white man! We must stop killing each other! We must stop back-biting and abusing one another! We must choose love and let go of false pride! We need to build one another up. We must help our neighbors and stop stealing from our neighbors. We must love ourselves. GOD loves you and GOD wants you to love yourself! Love yourself and your neighbor! Most of all, love GOD! The way out of domination is GOD! Turn to GOD. Allow GOD to fill you with love so you can then go out and bless your neighbor.
If Mr. Lynch listened to Satan to create a system for mental and spiritual oppression then let's listen to GOD and follow GOD's plan about how to overcome the DEVIL's lies.
GOD loves you and so do I,
Edmund W. Walton
Friday, August 20, 2010
"The fruits of Christianity were religious wars, butcheries, crusades, inquisitions, extermination of the natives of America and the introduction of African slaves in their place".
The Bible being used to dominate others and destroy hundreds of millions of lives has deeply troubled me. Sometimes, I have trouble reconciling my faith with its past. But then I pray and ask GOD for guidance. I do not claim to have all of the answers but I think GOD has shown me that just because people chose to do evil (even evil in GOD's name) doesn't mean that GOD is in the deed. JESUS says this,
"Not everyone who says to me, 'LORD, LORD,' will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the person who does the will of my FATHER who is in heaven. Many will say to me on that day, 'LORD, LORD, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name drive out demons and perform many miracles?' Then I will tell them plainly, 'I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers" (Matthew 7:21-23)!
JESUS is saying that just because someone does something in GOD's name doesn't mean that GOD is leading. I humbly and confidently submit that GOD was not in the degradation, subjection, raping, domination, slaughtering, of people of color within the last 500 years!
JESUS says, "The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that (all) may have life, and have it to the full" (John 10: 9-11 - New International Version).
If a person or group of people is invading another person's land to steal, kill, and destroy, which has happened to people of color, then the group of people who participated (and only those who participated) was/is being used by the devil. I AM NOT CALLING ANY GROUP OF PEOPLE DEVILS BECAUSE COLOR OF SKIN DOES NOT DETERMINE WHETHER SOMEONE COMMITS EVIL!!!!! But what I am saying is that those who have participated in the destruction of peoples' lives in the name of GOD in my opinion are being used by the DEVIL!!! BUT thank GOD for JESUS. JESUS tells us that GOD is not in destruction but for reconciliation with all of us - if you would ONLY BELIEVE IN THE LOVE THAT GOD HAS FOR YOU!!! JESUS LOVES YOU!! JESUS DOES NOT HATE YOU!!! JESUS came to earth, lived a sinless life, died for you and rose again for you! JESUS came down to earth to save you and me from our sins. JESUS came to earth to understand the human condition and in GOD's timing JESUS will return to heal all of the damage that has been done on the earth - THROUGHOUT ALL OF HISTORY - PAST, PRESENT, AND FUTURE!!!!
"Therefore, if anyone is in CHRIST, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come! All this is from GOD, who has reconciled us to himself through CHRIST and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that GOD was reconciling the world to himself in CHRIST, not counting our sins against us. And GOD has committed to us the message of reconciliation" (2 Corinthians 5:17-19 - New International Version).
GOD is saying that love draws a person to the good news, and the good news is that GOD loves you and made a way for you to be saved. We do not even have to create this ourselves!! It is impossible to do so :). GOD is awesome. GOD loves you! GOD loves everyone.
GOD is so awesome that HE can take the damage that has been inflicted upon all people of color and transform it to give HIM the praise. GOD can restore us and GOD will. People of all races need to turn to GOD so that healing can occur. GOD is the way out of suffering and pain. When GOD touches people who are perpetuating evil, then change occurs. When GOD touches the victims of pain, then healing occurs. When healing eclipses evil, then GOD's glory is revealed. Would you consider turning your life over to GOD? GOD loves you! JESUS is the savior! JESUS is the redeemer. JESUS doesn't war against people but against sin! Sin is what separates all of us from GOD. JESUS died to destroy sin, and rose again to help you and me to destroy sin in our lives.
No matter what negative historical occurrences happen, GOD will overcome it and use it for HIS glory! Consider this: "With people this is impossible, but with GOD all things are possible" (Matthew 19:26). Do not think that GOD cannot heal you and me!!! GOD will!!! GOD will restore people of color and heal the people who have hurt us and bring them to repentance.
"The LORD is not slow in keeping HIS promise, as some understand slowness. HE is patient with you and me, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance" (2 Peter 3:9).
May GOD bless you!
Edmund W. Walton
Thursday, August 19, 2010
"A Christian has no right being in a fight unless it's a spiritual fight"
Many feel that to prove one's strength that one must fight. I am learning that this is not the best way to live. But it is the way that most of the world follows. I am not refering to self-defense because at times that is needed. For instance, if you are about to be killed or physically harmed, I feel that it is okay to use self-defense. I do not believe in the death penalty nor do I believe that if you are being attacked that you should kill the other person. I know this is hard. I have never been placed in a situation in which I truly had to defend myself, but I pray to GOD that if I do, I do not mortally harm my adversary.
Apostle Paul says this, "For though we walk (live) in the flesh, we are not carrying on our warfare according to the flesh and using mere human weapons. For the weapons of our warfare are not physical [weapons of flesh and blood], but they are mighty before GOD for the overthrow and destruction of strongholds" (2 Corinthians 10:3-4 - The Message Version).
I feel that many conflicts of the world can be solved through love and understanding. Many of today's conflicts were sown in the past and the reprecussions are being felt today. In order to solve conflicts (I am speaking with limited knowledge) I feel that war and murder must cease. I feel that it is sin for Christians to kill - in war. In my opinion, I feel that war is evil and should NEVER occur. But that is my opinion and I know many do not agree with me.
I know some may say, "well, if you're country is being attacked, you are just going to sit back and let it get destroyed". But I think about the situation like this. The Western world (USA, Canada, Western Europe, and Australia). Is around maybe 25% of the world's population (forgive me if my statistics are off) and these nations have most of the world's income. Over one-billion people go without basic necessities but 25% of the world's population have over 50% of the world's wealth. That is craziness and injustice. Much of this wealth is earn through ill-gotten gain.
Many Christians in the western nations or nations of prosperity feel that they must support war to continue their ways of life. But I humbly submit that this is not GOD's way. GOD says to give away abundance. As rich nations, we are not practicing this. GOD says to share with the poor. We are not doing this. GOD says that if you have stolen to gather your wealth that you should give back 7 times what was stolen!!! The rich nations have not done this. But say they follow GOD.
What the rich nations have done is blamed the poverty, ethnic conflicts and things of that nature of the victims themselves!!! Yes, it is wrong what many nations are doing - in regards to killing. But what about the nations that have instigated these conflicts and have done nothing to solve them? And have instigated and planted the seeds of inferiority and destruction for over 500! What about the nation's that use GOD's name to influence their populace to commit acts of murder? This is not GOD'S way.
I humbly submit that if everyone (including myself) consider our neighbors better than ourselves then most of the world's issues can be solved.
In my viewpoint, Christian's should NOT fight in wars. Many Christians have been deceived. They think they are fighting for GOD but they are fighting to continue the destruction of lives!!!! Hate should be met with love and understanding and prayer - not with death!! This only makes things worse.
As believers of CHRIST, I feel that all saints need to unite and fight the injustices of this world and remember that military might is not what rules in GOD's kingdom but spiritual power.
"For the kingdom of GOD is not a matter of eating and drinking, but of righteousness, peace and joy in the HOLY SPIRIT, because anyone who serves CHRIST in this way is pleasing to GOD and approved by men" (Romans 14:17-18).
GOD bless you and thank you for reading!!!
Edmund W. Walton
Wednesday, August 18, 2010
"Service is the rent we pay for the privilege of living on this earth"
Serving and assisting others is potentially one of life's greatest joys. Volunteering in the community or in a social agency can potentially change someone's life! Volunteering and helping others can potentially lift the volunteer out of an emotional, physical, or spiritual rut. "Knowing you did something good brings an emotional uplifting that can never be matched by money or fame" (Why Volunteering is Important).
I feel that volunteering and acts of service are also what GOD calls all of us too. We do not have to be "great" or "famous" to serve those who are in need. Those who are in need are all around us, possibly even in our own homes but the busyness of life influence us to not notice.
Consider what JESUS said, "Whoever wants to be great must become a servant. That is what the Son of Man has done: He came to serve, not to be served....." (Mark 10:41-46 - Message Bible).
During my life, I have been blessed with many opportunities to serve those who are in need, and many times I did this when I was struggling in my own life. But I have learned and I am still learning that when you focus on helping others, GOD can take care of your seemingly unchangeable situation(s) because your focus is on uplifting others.
You may feel that volunteerism isn't for you but I encourage you to know that you can do it! By GOD's grace, I have served in large religious organizations as a greeter, small group facilitator, and as a youth minister. Beyond this, I have assisted men who were recently released from incarceration. Many were incarcerated for over thirty years! Many were emotionally, spiritually, or physically broken. I assisted men from prison starting at twenty-years old. When I first started, I was terrified! But I am thankful to GOD that I was given the privilege to serve. Many were charged for crimes that society would consider non-redeemable but all things are possible with GOD!
Through my various volunteer experiences, I gained a better understanding of the wisdom of not being judgmental. At times, a lack of empathy, understanding, or sympathy may influence us to be judgmental. Nevertheless, now is the time to overcome judgmental attitudes and fear. You can use your time, talent, and treasure to heal and bless others through volunteerism.
Consider this story: "Six months after complaining about a sore throat, Eric Hartwell died from cancer at the University of Michigan's C.S. Mott Children's Hospital. He was 9 years old. After such heartbreak, many parents would avoid returning to its setting. Hartwell's father, Mike, came back. At Mott, 15 people who have lost children eventually returned to the hospital to help others going through the same thing.... "I ask myself every day, 'Have I made a difference?'" said Hartwell. "If I haven't I feel like I failed him." Hartwell and the others have taken something devastating and twisted it into something positive" (Parents who lost children return to aid others at hospital).
GOD can turn any painful situation into something that can be used for good. Mr. Mike lost his son to cancer....but even through his pain, Mr. Mike made his mind up to help others in need! We all should strongly consider following the lead of Mr. Mike.
You can do it. I can do it. Let's remember that it's not too hard to help someone. One day we will need help and we will need someone to assist us. Let's continue the cycle of helping others.
GOD loves you!
From The Detroit News: http://www.detnews.com/article/20100802/LIFESTYLE03/8020339/1040/From-death--volunteerism#ixzz0x1U2WHXK
Monday, August 9, 2010
Economically, according to Bizreport.com, "By 2012, buying power in the African-American demographic will reach more than $1.1 trillion; nearly half of that buying power (45%) will be placed within the Affluent African-American segment. The study goes on to indicate that currently African-American's buying power is $892 billion". While African-Americans are contributing almost $1 trillion a year to the United States economy, the whole African continent only generates $892 billion (Economy of Africa-Wikipedia). To help you better understand why this is alarming is to compare the population differences of African peoples in the United States and those on the continent. According to the United States Census Bureau, African-Americans and other Blacks constitute about 37 million people. However, the African continent holds a population that constitutes a little over 1 billion people (World Population Prospects: The 2008 Revision Population Database). This means that a considerably small group of 37 million people make over $200 billion more than all of their 1 billion siblings combined. ALARMING?
Needless to say, all people of African descent are oppressed whether we understand it or not. Economically, African-American businesses make up less than 1 percent of all businesses within the United States (US Census Press Release). How is this so? This shouldn't be since African Americans are the largest minority race within the country (CIA World Factbook- United States). Our brothers and sisters on the continent face the same issue. Settling for less is when we allow corporations from the West to manipulate and exploit the natural resources we have. Resource-wise, Africa is the richest continent on Earth. Unfortunately, the West continues to take, take, and take our abundance and turn it into our lack. Also, we settle for less when as people of African descent, we understand what is happening in Africa and we do nothing about it.
Many people who recently migrate to the United States do not fully understand nor grasp the economic difficulties that African-Americans within the United States face. Also, I personally believe that many people of other ethnic groups who benefit from African-American consumption take African-Americans for granted. This miseducated and selfish mindset is due in part to the poor media image of African-Americans around the world. Many people who have businesses within the African-American community mistreat their African-American customers. The poor media images of African-Americans as drug abusers, sexually loose, drug-pushers, pimps, and a people who are loaded down with all types of negative vices has had a huge negative impact on the psyche of the majority of all people who reside within the United States.
Realistically, people of ALL ethnicities and races have these types of problems in their communities. Why is it that African-Americans' problems are exacerbated in the media? If the media wants to continually point out a people's flaws, shouldn't all races and ethnic groups problems be exposed in the same intensity and light as the African-American? I submit that this systematic wickedness and injustice is completely purposeful! In the larger scheme of things, if other ethnic groups and races who migrate to the United States with an already predetermined higher social-economic status than African-Americans have this miseducated mindset, then they will most likely see it as okay, acceptable, and sadly, necessary to mistreat African-Americans. This is done unconsciously and at times consciously because the media has already planted in the minds of many people that African-Americans are inferior and everyone else is above us. This false pride is not of GOD but of Satan!
This mindset doesn't just damage African-Americans but also damages how Africans view African-Americans and also themselves. Many Africans who come to the United States have been saturated with negative stereotypes of African-Americans as we have of our African brothers and sisters. This causes many Africans and African-Americans to dislike and not associate with one another. This fuels the systematic oppression of all people of African descent! Those in power (not all whites) but the ones in power (and only those who support the demonic system of oppression) want this lack of unity amongst Africans world-wide! They not only want this but they NEED this lack of unity to maintain their greedy grasp over the continent of Africa's resources! The instigators of oppression feed the lies that the continent of Africa and our African brothers and sisters are depraved, poor, dirty, filthy, and GOD-forsaken. On the contrary, these are the lies of the media (and of Satan who is behind the scenes)! Yes, there are obstacles in Africa - but many are of EXTERNAL CAUSES!!! Also, if this is all of Africa, then why have non-African people for over 3,000 years been invading the continent of Africa and draining it of its resources and people?!!! Africa is rich, full of GOD's truth, and great people who are pressing on to live even in the midst of life's obstacles!!!
As African people worldwide we MUST see through this smokescreen! We must see that this lack of unity, negative stereotypes and whatever other tools that are being used to hinder us must be overcome! If we do not see past these issues, we will continue to be dominated! We must overcome our prejudices, hatred, fears, dislikes, personal opinions, etc, and choose to love one another and embrace one another and our differences. We must not allow our religious beliefs to hinder our unity! Many of those in power use everything they can think of, even GOD, to meet their desires! Some of those in power, in my opinion, who claim to be believers and followers of Christ are NOT! Jesus never emphasized violence! Jesus said to share the gospel, aka "the good news" with and in love! Jesus spoke through the Apostle Paul when it was written in the scriptures that we war not against flesh and blood but against spiritual wickedness in high places! Jesus says that we are to love our enemies and not to destroy them! War, hatred, prejudice, murder, bitterness, etc are acts that GOD wants to take out of our hearts.
Those who claim to be Christians - followers of Christ - must press on to serve as peace-makers in their individual spheres of life! GOD wants all Africans to unite, and serve HIM first and develop our nations second! GOD wants justice for ALL people. GOD is not for racism, prejudice, and mind-numbing poverty! Many nations who say they are "Christian" are not! GOD wants Africans worldwide to turn our lives to HIM and serve HIM! GOD loves all of Africa's children! WE WILL NOT SETTLE FOR LESS!!!!
Humbly Submitted by:
Edmund Walton & Julius Nyerere