Yes, I saw the movie on opening night. Yes, I wept like a 7-year-old girl with a skinned knee.
Just a quick thought came to me though. William Wilberforce was a man who spent years of his life in social activism on behalf of others who looked nothing like him. Now this is nothing to lionize this man or John Newton (who penned the namesake hymn of the movie), but only in as much as he has pursued the image of our savior, Jesus who suffered unregrettably and fearlessly for we who had no right to be called friends.
I think Asian American Christians will come into their own when we can cry out not only for those of us Asian Americans who are wronged or insulted, but when we cry out on behalf of those not related to us, who do not resemble us at all. That is indeed, the amazing part of grace.
And because we know, and are becoming increasingly aware, of the racism that exists today, even in the Christian publishing circles (pointed out by TheCuttingTruth and Soong Chan Rah), then we should all the more become abolitionists of our day and age not only when we are insulted and offended, but when the humanity of others is at stake. For instance, how many of us are up in arms for our Hispanic brothers in Christ as the politics of the immigration debate is breaking up families and ruining lives? How many of us are cognizant of what is happening in the Sudan? How aware of you the things that are going in your very city? How are school zones set up? Where are the ghettos in your town? What’s the average median household? What’s your city’s history?
To become an abolitionist I witness from this evening’s viewing is not altogether that difficult, it is merely to face myself in the ugliest parts of me and by the power of God, quite literally, fight the living hell out of me and out of the world, one little thought, action, habit, routine, house, neighborhood, county, city, state, and nation at a time. Grace so amazing demands a good fight.
On the heels of the movie, I found this site to accompany it, The Amazing Change. Sign up to become a modern day Wilberforce.
May I live a life worthy of the song:
- Amazing Grace! How sweet the sound
That saved a wretch like me!
I once was lost, but now am found
Was blind, but now I see.
- ‘Twas Grace that taught my heart to fear,
And Grace my fears relieved.
How precious did that Grace appear
The hour I first believed.
- Through many dangers, toils, and snares
I have already come.
‘Tis Grace hath brought me safe thus far
And Grace will lead me home.
- The Lord has promised good to me.
His Word my hope secures.
He will my shield and portion be
As long as life endures.
- When we’ve been there ten thousand years
Bright shining as the sun,
We’ve no less days to sing God’s praise
Than when we’d first begun.