Jul 13

What’s Going On?

Posted in Adversity, Unity
1 Comment

If you have been (or are) a fan of Marvin Gaye then you are familiar with his song that asks the question, “What’s Going On?”


Mother, mother

There’s too many of you crying

Brother, brother, brother

There’s far too many of you dying

You know we’ve got to find a way

To bring some lovin’ here today


Marvin Gaye wrote these words in light of the political and social turmoil of the late 60s and early 70s. And yet, as we look out on the landscape of our time we must raise the question again, “What’s Going On?”

What’s going on when Alton Sterling is openly slain by those sworn to protect and serve?

What’s going on when Philando Castile was complying with the instructions of a police officer and was still gunned down?

What’s going on when those who are seeking to protect and serve are brutally cut down on the streets of Dallas in the line of duty?

What’s going on when we see racism, brutality, injustice, violence, abuse, and hatred in our world and call it everything but what it is … sin? What’s going on?

Many of us are anxious and hurting. All of us are confused. But what do we do?

When Marvin Gaye raised that question, what he was really asking is what is wrong with the world. Theologically speaking, I believe he was speaking to the pervasive nature of sin that is tearing this world apart.  And when we fail to speak openly and honestly, holistically and biblically about sin then we really have no answer to the ever pressing question, “What’s going on?”

Although it may seem ridiculous to connect our sins to this week’s bloodshed, God makes that connection. He connects personal sin to national disintegration, and personal repentance to national restoration. There is no power to change a nation greater than nationwide repentance.

So, let’s take time to ask God how we can be better.  Let’s ask God to show us how to love our neighbor today (especially white ones if we are black, or black ones if we are white, and blue ones regardless of our color). This is a time for reaching out across our divides; across the comfort of our worship sanctuary, across our social circles, or even across the street. Let’s not just proclaim our love digitally, but practice love in our society.

We can help to heal our land by loving in ways we’ve never done before, by loving people we’ve never loved before, especially by loving those who look and sound most different to us.

Above all, let’s pray that God would prevent more bloodshed — whether of black blood, blue blood, white blood, or gay blood. And let’s pray that many would turn to the atoning blood of Christ, because ultimately only his mighty blood can heal our hearts and thereby heal our land.


Father, father

We don’t need to escalate

You see, war is not the answer

For only love can conquer hate

You know we’ve got to find a way

To bring some lovin’ here today

Talk to me

So you can see

What’s going on!


“If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”

(2 Chronicles 7:14)

One thought on “What’s Going On?

  1. Linda Tyler-Barnes says:

    Wonderful message Pastor and I am so very sorry I missed your message….although have not been there much due to illness or the depression I suffer with I look forward in any word of wisdom you share…so I thank you and pray for you daily…GOD BLESS YOU and YOUR FAMILY

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