I have a dear friend who is sad and ashamed every now and then that she is born of Chinese descent—when for example she hears of news that Chinese businessmen cheat or do things that show no integrity, when she witnesses Chinese people say common expressions that demonstrate how they feel superior as a race and that other people not belonging fully to their race are inferior, she personally takes it as something she herself should be ashamed for. Another Chinese friend shies away from any Chinese grouping because in her mind, they will gossip about her to the whole Chinese community so whenever I invite her to an event, one of her first questions is, “Are they Chinese?” Another person I know has a phobia against Chinese women because of traumatic experiences with a wrongly or rightly perceived proliferation of Chinese “wanton homewreckers who prostitute themselves in hot pursuit of rich married men.” Another person I know is treated as a second class citizen because she is not “pure Chinese.”
These sentiments are not limited to the Chinese. If you feel hesitation to reach out to someone who is not from your own race, if you feel discriminated against for belonging to a certain race, if something someone of a particular race did to you makes you repulsed by that race, the bible gives life insight.
Col 3:9-11 says 9 Do not lie to each other, since you have taken off your old self with its practices 10 and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator. 11 Here there is no Gentile or Jew, circumcised or uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave or free, but Christ is all, and is in all.
Taking off the old (ways, practices, notions, character, prejudices) and putting on the new as we get to know God more, as we become renewed day by day to becoming the person who is less like our old self and more like God (Christ-like), we grow to understand that what is acceptable is not based on race. To God, what matters is Christ. The presence of Christ, the life of Christ in a person.
Dear Lord, please help us to see others from Your point of view. Please help us to be colour-blind to people’s race and rather look at people’s hearts. Thank You for Your Word that shows us that regardless of our race, we are one in Christ. Help us not to treat people by race but by grace.