Yesterday was a day for silence, but today is for speaking again. So what is love? And given what love is, am I actually loving my black sisters and brothers if I don’t do better?

 
I finished making this video yesterday and then this morning I saw a video from my church conference president in which were these words:
“It is time for us to break the silence. It is time for us to be more concerned about the impact we have on our communities than about our ability to simply look and talk like good Seventh-Day Adventists. How can we expect to make disciples and build communities, when at the times we are needed most, we hide behind the walls of silence and political correctness? Friends, let us make a commitment, to follow in Jesus’ example by calling out injustice, lending our voices in speaking up for the marginalised and demonstrating Christ’s love, especially to those society seems to have overlooked.” ~ words from Dr. Emmanuel Osei, President of the South England Conference of the Seventh-Day Adventist Church.
 
I wasn’t sure whether to make something, but my posts and my drawings are about faith and life. They are about what I see and read and how I connect them to the faith I have in God. Right now so many people seem to be waking up to see and read about problems inherent within our societies which lead to the horrific deaths of black people. Horrific, preventable deaths. And I don’t know how to make that ‘waking up’ last – even in myself! How do I keep fighting something that doesn’t seem to offer a way out? But what I do know is that that process (and progress) doesn’t begin with silence. I need to speak. Speak honestly to myself and to those I love. And because I am me, I need to create; I need to pour out what all of this makes me feel and create something that continues a conversation that says what we have now isn’t alright.
 
Your voice may be imperfect. Your contribution might be small. But doing nothing at all is not permissible – at least not by love.
 
 
I’ve collated some helpful resources down below in case your lost for where to begin. But Google is always a solid starting place: find stuff out and go from there.
 
Things you can do from the UK (or your country):
 
*DONATE*
         The George Floyd Memorial Fund to support Mr. Floyd’s family with the costs related to his death: https://www.gofundme.com/f/georgefloyd

         The Belly Mujinga Fund to support Ms. Mujinga’s daughter in the future: https://www.gofundme.com/f/rip-belly-mujinga
         Show Racism the Red Card, a UK anti-racism charity that uses workshops and training sessions to educate and combat racism: https://www.justgiving.com/theredcard
         The Loveland Foundation, supporting black women and girls seeking mental health support: https://thelovelandfoundation.org/
Or have a Google! There is plenty of information out there.
 
*READ*
         Me and White Supremacy, by Layla F. Saad
         Why I’m No Longer Talking to White People about Race, by Reni Eddo-Lodge
         White Fragility, by Robin Diangelo
Or again, Google around, or check out some of the many resources on IG.
 
*RESEARCH*
         Watch the News, even though it’s painful
         Read articles and blogs written by black people who don’t share your viewpoint
         Don’t give up listening when you feel uncomfortable with it
 
*LOVE*
         Don’t hide behind silence
         Listen to criticism and take it constructively, but don’t give up
         Don’t expect thanks or praise – don’t let that creep in and be why you do something. Do it because you know it’s the right thing to do, and because love forces us to do better
 
The quote I used in the illustration was written by Ellen G. White, the founder of the Seventh-Day Adventist Church.
It reads: “When the heavenly principle of eternal love fills the heart, it will flow out to others, … because love is the principle of action, and modifies the character, governs the impulses, controls the passions, subdues enmity, and elevates and ennobles the affections.” It was written in ‘Testimonies for the Church,’ 4:223.

 

Quote: "When the heavenly principle of eternal love fills the heart, it will flow out to others, ... because love is the principle of action, and modifies the character, governs the impulses, controls the passions, subdues enmity, and elevates and ennobles the affections." Written by Ellen G. White in 'Testimonies for the Church,' 4:223