I’m Tired…

Can I be honest… And even vulnerable for a second. This past week has been some of the hardest days I have ever had in my life regarding ethnic struggles. The events over the past 48 hours were more the overflow of much deeper struggles, but the overflow has been way more severe than I anticipated. I wish I never watched those videos. They triggered in me a deep seeded reality that I had more or less suppressed deep in the back of my mind. Seeing those two men killed so brutally and die right there on my computer screen has caused all of my passed racial experiences to come to the surface. For the past 48 hours, I have relived all the racism and life threatening situations I have been in (involving police) over and over again in my mind. Whether awake or asleep, I’ve been haunted by the reality that there are literally dozens of times where I could’ve been those men bleeding out on the concrete. Where I could’ve been that man dying in the car while Vy and Hadassah looked on powerless. Where my mother could’ve been the one giving that speech and my brother weeping beside her saying, “I just want my brother back.” I have never been more aware of my blackness or more aware of my family’s ethnic difference than I have in the past week. My son is too young, though; I don’t want him to see the sorrow in my eyes. I want to give him as many years as I can before I have to violate his joyful little bubble with the realty that he is different, and his difference is life threatening. Right now, Hadassah has no idea the threat her father is under every time he leaves the house. She has no idea that when she says, “see you later Daddy” I shudder. In all honesty, I’m tired. I’m tired of fighting for unity in the church and being labeled divisive or other things. I’m tired of engaging in society and being considered delusional. I’m tired of not only feeling different but being reminded daily that my difference is a considered by many a curse. I am tired of well-meaning people telling me they love me only as a means to blunt the knife of their words that they will soon use to pierce my heart. (this isn’t me doubting the love of all you who I know love me. This is regarding those who say it and yet refuse even to consider the struggles I’ve mentioned). I’m tired of people seeking to defend their ignorance by quoting stats to me that only demonstrate it further [Not knocking those who have genuinely reached out with questions concerning statistics].

However, the Lord has used it all. The words, “All I have is Christ” have never penetrated my soul so deeply than in the past few days. If it weren’t for the fact that I know God through Jesus Christ, I would be undone. But because of Christ, because of the Gospel; in the midst of sorrow, I am always rejoicing… I am forever grateful for my wife who has for almost fifteen years been a refuge for me as she has seen my differences and loved them. I am thankful for the church as she has tried her best, though flawed, to love me well and encourage me in my God. I am thankful to see mono-ethnic churches striving for diversity, but my path has become cloudy concerning what my role in the work will be. I just want to be faithful and be or go will the Lord will have me. Pray for me, pray for us.

 

Coram Deo

Kyle J. Howard

About Kyle James Howard

My name is Kyle, I am married to my “high-school sweetheart” and we have 3 children. I have a 7 year-old daughter (Hadassah), a 2 year-old son (Jonah), and 1 year old (Kesed). I am 32 years old and I am currently a student at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. I have an Associates degree in Biblical & Theological Studies, A B.S. in Biblical Counseling, and I am finishing up an Advanced M. Div in Historical Theology. Click on the "About Me" link at the top of my home page to read my full testimony.

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