Bookworm Claudette Colvin had two dreams when she was young. The first was to marry a baseball player. The second was to become President of the United States. Lofty dreams indeed for a teenager from the poor side of town, but she was an A-grade student and determined to make something of her life.
The thwack of a curveball rocketing over a baseball diamond or the patriotic stirrings of a big brass band on the lawns of the White House must have seemed impossible that one Friday in March, when the smart and pretty 15-year-old was hauled into a courthouse. She’d been yelled at by students, kicked three times by police and then taken across town crying and humiliated in a patrol car by the same officers, who made lewd comments about her appearance.
Her crime? Riding the bus.
Claudette was black. She’d refused to give up her seat for a white man. And in 1955, before Martin Luther King shared his dream, the law in Montgomery, Alabama, forced black passengers to give up their seats for whites. However, this young girl did the unthinkable and said, “No”.
In heaven, there are no restricted seats. In fact, everyone is welcome to sit and eat at the same table as the God of creation (Revelation 5:9). Imagine that. In all His glory, majesty and power, the Lord wants us to celebrate with Him in heaven, regardless of colour, culture or country. All we have to do is answer the invitation to join Him.
Meanwhile, our hearts must mirror His. While the world might judge according to colour, God doesn’t. He sees His children, who He loves equally. And He expects us to share the same love for our neighbour.
Racism devalues people, divides people and sets people against each other. Heaven is the complete opposite. All people who accept Jesus as their Lord and Saviour are united as one before God. As the Bible says about God, “All nations will come and worship You” (Psalm 86:9; Revelation 15:4).
People from other cultures might be different, but God made them this way so their unique gifts could glorify Him forever. So if you’re trusting in Jesus and want to be part of His Kingdom then banish animosity, feuds and ill feeling towards those who are different. And if you’re being mistreated, then hang in there, things are going to change!
Prayer: Dear God, teach me to love my neighbour as I love myself, and to welcome the stranger, just as you welcomed me when I was a stranger. Help me to wait for heaven when racism will vanish.
Bible verse: Revelation 5:9 God saves people “from every tribe and language and people and nation” through faith in the death of Christ to forgive sins.
Acknowledgement: This article was sourced from Outreach Media, Sydney, Australia.
Images and text © Outreach Media 2020