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The Color of Blood

In Sunday’s sermon, I talked about how prejudice insinuates itself beneath everyone’s skin. It is hard work to root it out of our hearts. I confessed to my own learnings when I was a teenager:

You can’t throw darkness out no matter how hard you try, but you can fill your life with light and life and love. It begins by understanding that WE ARE NOT THE VINE. We are the branches. We aren’t the light, we are but a reflection of the light.

Remembering that we aren’t the source of the life that flows through us might help us to remember that we aren’t the source of the life that flows through others either, but we all share the same source.

I became a licensed Methodist minister when I was 18. In the year leading up to that I attended college and worked at the local Piggly Wiggly. One day one of my fellow employees, a man named Tommy, was in a terrible automobile accident. His wife also worked at the store and they had four kids. Tommy was the hardest working man I’d ever met. He had to work three jobs to support his family. I came to love the entire family.

After the accident they asked all the store employees to sign up to give blood. A few days had passed when the store manager stopped me and asked, “Mike, you are 18, aren’t you?”

“Yes sir,” I said.

“Then why haven’t you signed up to give blood? You aren’t afraid, are you?”

“No sir, not really,” I answered, “but I didn’t think I could give Tommy my blood because I”m white and he is black.”

The manager snorted and said, “Yeah, but all blood is red.”

And so it is …

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