I want to hate you.
But I won’t.
I choose not to, because I don’t want to become you.
And even more so, because Jesus told me to love my enemies… so I choose to love you.
Yes James, I love you.
As the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. taught us, “I have decided to stick with love. Hate is too great a burden to bear.”
Make no mistake, your sin is great. The bigotry that led you to drive your car into a crowd of your fellow humans has no place in humanity. The hate that compelled you to attack others has no future or reward.
You James, took a life for an ideology that will not give you life. You murdered a precious woman who served her community well. And you injured 19 others precious souls.
A good friend of mine was inches away from being struck. You almost hurt a man who has dedicated his life to preaching the gospel of peace and who immediately responded to comfort those who were traumatized by your actions.
But your Saturday in Charlottesville was wasted young terrorist.
Yes, I’m claiming you. With the same intensity you attacked I will pray for your Road To Damascus. I’ll believe for your eyes to be blinded to your current reality so they can be open to the love above.
I pray that you will be thrown off your high horse, as Saul (turned Paul) was in the book of Acts. And after meeting with the Christ who gave his life for all… I pray that you would become the loudest apostle against the hate that your preached before.
For most of your short life you have felt superior to anyone who was not white. But the brown man from Galilee loves you despite that, and I will trust Him today for the radical transformation of your heart.
Oh yes James Alex Fields Jr., I am claiming you for the Kingdom of God.
Just so you know, your desire to inspire others to join your cause has backfired. Hundreds of thousands of your white brothers and sisters have spoken up against the racism that leads your cause.
No doubt about it, the work is not done, more people need to join the chorus and claim aloud, “White Supremacy is evil!” … but make no mistake, we will not rest until we overcome. We will rid our communities of all the hatred you and your friend spewed on us. Because if someone taught you how to hate that well, then the majority of us can teach the world how to love even more.
I am a latino. A minority in your country. In your eyes, an enemy. A lesser race. A lower form.
So I bless you who persecute me. I forgive you for your sins against us. And I pray the same for all your friends who marched this weekend with torches of regression and hunger for war.
Me? I have chosen a different torch.
The light of Christ.
A city upon a hill.
And I place my other cheek in front you.
No matter what you do, you will not decide what I do with my heart. You will not corrupt my faith and hope. You will NOT make me into you.
Go ahead and hate me.
While you do that, I’ll show you more grace.
And I’ll love you like Christ loved Judas.
It’s up to you which kind of apostle you will become.
“You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven.” – Jesus (Matthew 5:43-45)