Would you agree that knowledge is power?
The proverbs of Solomon, son of David, king of Israel:
To know wisdom and instruction, to understand words of insight, to receive instruction in wise dealing, in righteousness, justice, and equity; to give prudence to the simple, knowledge and discretion to the youth –
Let the wise hear and increase in learning, and the one who understands obtain guidance, to understand a proverb and a saying, the words of the wise and their riddles.
The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge; fools despise wisdom and instruction.
– Proverbs 1:1-7
In light of this passage and current events, I (like so many others desiring change) am seeking to better understand what got us to this point through the path of education. History is my worst subject but, presently, we are living in the middle of future history books. That being said, you and I are the ones who can actively determine how the unwritten parts of our future history books play out. Do you realize that? Right now, more than ever in my lifetime for sure, we have the chance to take part in the direction our country goes. Now the wise person would never enter the Daytona 500 without first learning to drive. In the same way, we can’t expect to fight for equality and justice if we don’t first learn about the situation we are wanting to change.
On June 19th, we as a state and country will have the opportunity to acknowledge a day that has been declared a State Holiday. Many other states also recognize this day, though it is not yet a national holiday, but the origins are actually from Galveston, TX. Being a native Texan, I began to look into the history of Juneteenth and what I found is definitely something worth sharing. The following is from a historical marker that I have seen myself while in Galveston. The inscription summarized the importance of June 19th as follows:
Commemorated annually on June 19th, Juneteenth is the oldest known celebration of the end of slavery in the U.S. The Emancipation Proclamation, issued by President Abraham Lincoln on Sep. 22, 1862, announced, “That on the 1st day of January. A.D. 1863, all person held as slaves within any state…in rebellion against the U.S. shall be then, thenceforward and forever free.” However, it would take the Civil War and passage of the 13th Amendment to the Constitution to end the brutal institution of African American slavery.
After the Civil War ended in April 1865 most slaves in Texas were still unaware of their freedom. This began to change when Union troops arrived in Galveston. Maj. Gen. Gordon Granger, commanding officer, District of Texas, from his headquarters in the Osterman building (Strand and 22nd St.), read ‘General Order No. 3’ on June 19, 1865. The order stated “The people of Texas are informed that, in accordance with a proclamation from the executive of the United States, all slaves are free. This involves an absolute equality of personal rights and rights of property between former masters and slaves.” With this notice, reconstruction era Texas began.
Freed African Americans observed “Emancipation Day,” as it was first known, as early as 1866 in Galveston. As community gatherings grew across Texas, celebrations included parades, prayer, singing and readings of the proclamation. In the mid-20th century, community celebrations gave way to more private commemorations. A re-emergence of public observance helped Juneteenth become a state holiday in 1979. Initially observed in Texas, this landmark event’s legacy is evident today by worldwide commemorations that celebrate freedom and the triumph of the human spirit.https://www.galveston.com/whattodo/tours/self-guided-tours/historical-markers/juneteenth/
For more interesting facts about Juneteenth, I have attached a link to Mental Floss (who frequently contributes to my favorite show, Jeopardy!).
Honest Abe declared “absolute equality,” but 150 years later we are still missing the mark. And until recently, I was totally unaware of this. Something that has helped further my understanding of our current condition was watching the movie “Just Mercy.” It was released in theaters 6 months ago and is currently streaming for FREE FOR THE MONTH OF JUNE on the following services shown on the picture below.
Investing only 2 hours and 15 minutes will allow you to learn “more about the systemic racism that plagues our society” – as the producers stated above. I watched this last night and found it very impactful and relevant. It does contain violence and language inappropriate for children. But adults, after seeing George Floyd’s death, we can no longer dismiss that the violence and language included is, in fact, the reality.
So why am I really writing this post? Knowledge is power “To know wisdom and instruction, to understand words of insight, to receive instruction in wise dealing, in righteousness, justice, and equity;“ (see above). How interesting that the verse specifically brings in topics of righteousness, justice and equity! This is our time to do something… To Do Better.
Right now, you and I are in a unique situation where we can actually create something new, something BETTER for our children to experience as they grow up. Personally, THIS is the heart behind why I am using my spare time to educate myself. The climate of our future is in the hands of those reading this and those deciding they will not return to their old way of thinking. My children have the chance to grow up in an America that is unified and full of hope, as it is meant to be. For my children’s friends, the children of my friends, and the many patients that I care for in my clinic that are black – They Deserve Better!
In these next 2 weeks leading up to June 19th and beyond, will you please join me in educating yourself and also in prayer. This combination can be powerful.
Topics for prayer:
For Juneteenth, 2020 to be a day of celebration and peace as we reflect on what it’s significance, and for Satan’s schemes to be silenced
Our country’s leadership to find ways to work together respectfully to bring solutions
Law enforcement’s safety, wisdom, and for leaders in peace to rise up
Peaceful protests to let the sparks of change ignite into great things for all races, starting with those hurting the most – Black Americans
Ceasing of riots and bringing restoration to those who have been impacted by this evil. For God to create opportunities and bring beauty from the ashes that will lead others to find Salvation in Christ.
Repentance from generational sins with roots in slavery and injustice, from our negligence, from times we have chosen silence instead of obedience.
Revival to come to America and for Christians to seek God first, be bold in responding/not reacting, and let others know us by our love/fruit.
Bring an end to coronavirus, healing to those affected, safety for those on the frontlines, comfort to those in mourning over all kinds of losses. Prayer for all believers to be sensitive to the Holy Spirit as He works within us, through our learning and understanding of how we are each designed to work together with our individual, unique gifts. And as we approach the throne of grace with confidence, let us receive grace and mercy in this time of need. This is the way we can bring about change, set us on a course for healing, and lead others to know the love and hope we have in Jesus Christ.
The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me,
because the Lord has anointed me
to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted,
to proclaim freedom for the captives
and release from darkness for the prisoners,
to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor
and the day of vengeance of our God,
to comfort all who mourn,
and provide for those who grieve in Zion—
to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes,
the oil of joy instead of mourning,
and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair.
They will be called oaks of righteousness,
a planting of the Lord for the display of his splendor.
– Isaiah 61:1-3
Have Courage, Be Kind, & Let Your Light Shine,
~ Lindsey Alaine