The urban scholar and poetic genius of the pavement Tupac Shakur, so eloquently said, “I suffered through the years, and shed so many tears Lord, I lost so many peers, and shed so many tears.” The reality for many of us is that we have shed a lot of tears because we’ve lost so many peers. From Covid-19 to the recent untimely deaths of our brothers and sisters at the hands of law enforcement, it appears to be turning for the worse everyday. Just like Tupac, Jeremiah shed some tears as well. In the book of Lamentations 3:20 says, “I will never forget this awful time, as I grieve over my loss.”
When we lament, pray, and fast we are not only acknowledging pain and suffering, we are also saying that we believe that God can fix it.
Today we are asking you to fast. We are asking for all believers go ask God to give us the power to “Loose the Bands of Wickedness.” Isa. 58:6 says, “Is not this the fast that I have chosen? to loose the bands of wickedness, to undo the heavy burdens, and to let the oppressed go free, and that ye break every yoke?”( KJV)
In America there are many in our country who are wrongly imprisoned. We arrest and warehouse more bodies in prisons than any other developed country. Our justice system is not equal. Today, I want you to pray for the end of mass incarceration. As we fast and pray that the bands of wickedness be released, I encourage you to call on God to remove the systemic structures and policies that hold black people back from living a full life. We are praying for just housing policies, community investment, change to infrastructure, and better funding for our schools.
After we have prayed and lamented, now it’s the time to act. There are so many ways that we can express our faith through charity and activism. We are asking you to joining a local nonprofit organization that shares your common interests and that is already fighting for systemic change. You can show up at your local city council meetings, and meet your elected representatives and ask them what they are doing for your community. Last, but definitely not least you can set up a courageous conversation with a group of friends and talk about the ways that God wants to use you to advocate for change.