Refuse Hate! - God's Teachings, My Perspective

by Natasha Williams

Hey, my beautiful friends! I wanted to share something that has been on my mind and especially my heart.

God’s Teachings:

The first thing to understand in this discussion is that there is only one race…the human race. Caucasians, African Americans, Hispanics’, Asians, Indians, Arabs…they are not different races. Rather, they are different ethnicities of the human race. All human beings have the same physical characteristics (with minor variations, of course). More importantly, all human beings are equally created in the image and likeness of God (Genesis 1:26-27). God loved the world so much that He sent Jesus to lay down His life for us (John 3:16). The “world” obviously includes all ethnic groups.

God does not show partiality or favoritism (Deuteronomy 10:17Acts 10:34Romans 2:11Ephesians 6:9), and neither should we. James 2:4 describes those who discriminate as “judges with evil thoughts.” Instead, we are taught to “love our neighbors as ourselves” James 2:8. In the Old Testament, God divided humanity into two “racial” groups: Jews and Gentiles. God’s intent was for the Jews to be a kingdom of priests, ministering to the Gentile nations. Instead, for the most part, the Jews became proud of their status and despised the Gentiles. Jesus Christ put an end to this, destroying the dividing wall of hostility (Ephesians 2:14). All forms of racism, prejudice, and discrimination are insults to the work of Christ on the cross.

My Perspective:

I am a black girl with mostly white friends that I love!

I want to specifically speak about my experiences and what it is like being a black girl who pretty much hangs around with some good white people. Especially now, when all you see on the news or social media are violence against my very own. I think with everything that has been going on over the past year, it’s a must do for my girls and I to join in the conversation. I know if I don’t speak about it and share how I feel I don’t think things will ever change on my end. I get to be the change!...You guys, I GET TO! Not because I have to.

This is a very sensitive topic for my twin and me. We grew up in a small country town and we’ve never had any racism problems; at least not to my knowledge and if we did my parents never spoke about it. It wasn’t an open daily discussion that we have to have now in 2021 with our children. Are all white people racist? Hard no. And are all cops bad people? Absolutely not!! That’s my opinion! Thinking that way is just pure hate!

It might not make sense to a lot of people or some of you might not care, but honestly it is the opposite of the truth in my experience. The people we surround ourselves with have a major impact on our lives. Growing up in a predominantly white school and being able to count on my fingers how many blacks were in my class, it was never a problem for me.

I can, however, remember when I went out of town, spoke on the phone or would even dress differently, people assumed I was acting or pretending to be white. That was never the case! When we did hang around our own people (black people) we were constantly ridiculed because of the way we dressed or spoke. They said what we wanted was to be white, and we could never live up to their expectations of us as black girls. That was how we dressed and spoke; it was who we were.

Because of that we couldn’t really fit in with our own people. It was heartbreaking at times! I remember growing up I wanted my hair permed or pressed, but my mom wouldn’t allow it (just on Sundays), so we went to school with braids or piggy tails. That was another hard and different battle we dealt with within ourselves. I don’t remember being teased or bullied, but the feeling of not fitting in was memorable.

As I grew older, I started to notice people’s differences, and this is when my circle of friends started to get smaller and smaller. Even now, my daughters are experiencing the same thing; it’s like déjà vu all over again. The main difference I see is people today are more open about all things. I’ve also noticed over the years that I have always felt welcome and accepted by the white people around me. They have accepted my heart and not the color of my skin or my children’s skin.

So, for clarification as to what it is like being friends with white people still today and why I have the friend group that I have…Please know this:

  • I’m not racist for having a predominantly white friend group.
  • I’m not trying to be white!
  • I’m trying to be who God called me to be and not teach HATE!!
  • I’m not insecure about myself or my skin color whatsoever!
  • And for the record, I’m not an Oreo or a country brownie or whatever else you want to call it!!

Friends if you could take something from my words and experiences it would be this…

We must send prayers to our communities and the police departments across the world. Prayers for the knowledge and understanding there is to gain from racism. Prayers and wisdom to refuse hate. We know the world won’t change overnight, but hopefully in due time.

We must continue to pray for this world because we are so divided and that’s not what our Heavenly Father wants for us.

In acceptance of the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award at the 2021 Oscars, Tyler Perry spoke about REFUSING HATE! He stated that he refused to apply blanket judgement to any one group; something that is so common in today’s world. Rather, Perry dedicated the award “to anyone who wants to stand in the middle, no matter what’s around the walls, stand in the middle because that’s where healing happens. That’s where conversation happens. That’s where change happens. It happens in the middle.” [Tyler Perry, Oscars 2021].

I believe he said it best, and this says it all. Refuse hate above all else, my friends!!