taking the words of Jesus seriously


Not a day passes that I don’t notice the subtle benefits afforded to me simply by virtue of being born white.


It’s why I don’t need a strategy to be treated with respect when I shop at the mall. I don’t have to think about dressing well or making my first purchase from the nicest store—Nordstrom’s, Neiman’s, Saks—so that I’ll be taken seriously as a customer. In fact, if I walk in wearing cut-off jeans and combat boots, I still expect and receive respect.


It’s why people who look like me never end up in neighborhood watch newsletters, labelled as “suspicious” or “potentially dangerous” so others can BOLO (Be on the Lookout). In fact, I could creep down any driveway in town and folks would naturally assume I was harmless.


It’s why I don’t have to worry that a police officer will place his hand on his gun when he pulls me over for a traffic stop. And it’s why, if he did, I’d assume he was just polishing it.


It’s why my white son and I can drink our sodas in line at the grocery store before we pay for them. And it’s why his black friends know not to.


It’s why, even after Charleston, I don’t really feel afraid when someone of a race other than my own visits my church’s Wednesday evening Bible Study.


Continue reading Margot’s full article at Christianity Today.


About The Author


Margot Starbuck—author, collaborator and speaker—earned an MDiv from Princeton Theological Seminary and a Bachelor's from Westmont College. She’s convinced that because God, in Jesus Christ, is with us and for us, we’ve been made to be with and for others. So she’s passionate about equipping folks to love our (sometimes unlikely) neighbors and is the author of seven books and collaborator on others. She enjoys speaking to audiences around the country that include: Messiah College, MOPs International, Young Life Women’s Weekend, Urban Promise Ministry Summit and Wheaton College Center for the Application of Christian Ethics. Margot lives downtown Durham, North Carolina, with her three teens.

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