Congregation of St. Panama Jackson the United Methodist Baptist Pentecostal AME Church of God in Christ Episcopal Primitive Missionary Baptist Downward Dog Down by the Riverside Holiness Church, please bow your heads:
Dear 8-pound, 6-ounce newborn infant Jesus, don’t even know a word yet, just a little infant and so cuddly, but still omnipotent, I come to you again, oh Lord, in inquiry and restitution, yet with confusion and disappointment in my spirit. For tiny infantile-who-will-grow-to-be-not-infantile Lord, I feel some type of way, and Lord, you know I’m black, so defining what “type of way” means is unnecessary, for you are all-knowing and all-ethnical, able to move swiftly between cultural colloquialisms and signifiers, for you are the light and the way, oh Lord, being a flashlight, or even a neon light, for those whose phones don’t provide light in times of darkness.
Now is a time of darkness; be a cellphone light, Father, to the blinded and wretched of the earth. See, there is a community of people out there sitting on Ikea bouches with always capitalized names like KARLSTAD, resting firmly in their feelings anytime a community unlike their own—’pacifically the black community—shows any type of love or solidarity for our own. When the black community desires to demand more of the very rights and privileges that the unaforementioned community traversed seas to gain—even throwing away your good teas into a harbor—somehow, they get 38 hot and #AllLivesMatter the bejesus out of any outlet that will let them do so. Basically, when we move, they move—just like that.
That unaforementioned community, Father, will now be aforementioned as “the white community.” Now Lord, let me be clear: I know it ain’t ALL of your white people. Just like I know that all of my skinfolks ain’t my kinfolks, all white folks ain’t out here pissing in Wheaties every single time we profess our love for our community individually or as a community writ large.
But precious Lord—take my hand, if you will—those that complain the most often speak the loudest and pray and pray for my downfall, Father. I don’t get it, and I come to you in hope and prayer that you can infuse the souls of white folks with an iota of the souls of black folks. Lord, be a Nostalgia INF300 infuser of racial harmony and understanding. They might not get it, but through your wise and knowing ways, Lord, they can perhaps learn to calm down, chill, maybe even kick off their shoes and relax their racism.
Jesus, I for the life of me can’t understand why pride in one’s own community and culture could be treated as such an affront to another’s, though we all know that it has something to do with low self-esteem and all of those Cialis commercials that run at inappropriate times for my children during NFL games—which I’m not sure I’m watching anymore; I haven’t received my black-community-guide memo this year yet. Help them, oh benevolent Holiness, to understand that I can both love who I am and what you have gifted me without occupying my heart with malice or hatred for another.
Sure, I can be extremely displeased and distrustful of institutions specifically built to protect that other community’s interests and not my own, but that’s exactly what pride in one’s own culture and community comes from. You’d think they’d know that, considering the tremendous amount of resources you’ve granted so many in the form of books written for them, by them, about the very power and privilege they maintain. Yet without fail, the minute we start up something for us, by us, here that community goes being upset and questioning the need for things specifically targeted to underrepresented communities, as if the very concept of underrepresented is foreign. They be knowing, God. They be knowing.
Help the less-than-melanated, Holiest of Trinities, comprehend that while creative-space-building-induced pride in one’s self is a significantly wonderful thing, we have to create these carve-outs ’PACIFICALLY because they refuse to do so. Lord, grant them the serenity to understand and know, show and care about what’s happening in a world outside of their own, with their selfish-as—Lord, they almost got me to cussing in the sanctuary.
Grant those unhued denizens of your grander community some grace in their phalanges and extremities as we reach out and try not to slap the dog mess out of anybody who thinks that Black History Month means that ALL 12 months aren’t white history month. Jesus, be a fence of patience around your flock of ethnic minorities who just want to live in peace where we want and how we want without the po-po being called because Junebug can’t handle his liquor. He can’t, but he also ain’t hurtin’ nobody, Jesus. He just ain’t.
Lord, we’re a movement by ourselves, but a force when we’re together united in anti-nonsense. Lord, just help the white people do better and be better. For a group who has pretty much illegally and violently racked up nothing but wins in the immoral-victory column, they sure are a salty and insecure lot, and it makes no sense.
Help them get over themselves, oh gracious one; help them help themselves be the people they swear they are. Help them to know that my raised fist has nothing to do with them but everything to do with us and wanting equality and liberation—not at their expense, but at our own benefit. Why fore come that’s such a hard concept for them to understand, Father God? And don’t tell me that it’s human nature, but do tell M.J. I said happy belated—Sister Mary put that on the prayer list, and I did judge her a bit because he been dead for some years now, but I didn’t want to be startin’ something, so I just told her that Sister Katherine would be pleased.
Lord, I trust in your ways and believe in things that I cannot see, touch or feel. So I’m gon’ trust that you’re gon’ right the ship, homie. Oh, and help the entirely nonsensical of your citizenry understand that white nationalism is TOTES not the same thing, bruh. Like for real for real, and your folks who are equating white supremacists with Black Lives Matter need a good smiting. I’m not sure if you still do that anymore, and to be real, I don’t even know what that looks like, but if you do, come through, Jesus, ya dig?
Lord, I humbly ask for these blessings and demands in your name, and as your name is your name, Father God, let the church say ... amen.