My heart grieves for the country that I was born and raised in; the country I love.
It is so hard to sit back and look at what is happening in this country, which has claimed to be founded as a Christian nation, and not be grieved.
My heart grieves at the continuous, self-inflicted violence and murder that we see daily.
My heart grieves at the way we continue to overlook and ignore the taboo subjects in our community, such as mental illness, incest and abuse, which are negatively impacting so many people and leading to dire consequences.
My heart grieves for the many people who have been caught up in the legal system because of draconian laws that were put in place to target select groups of people.
My heart grieves for the man or the woman who was falsely convicted of a crime they didn’t commit, and only gets a pat on the back and a few coins for the injustice they endured for years.
My heart grieves at the way drugs and guns have infiltrated our communities.
My heart grieves at the condition of humanity, who would treat our women as if they are nothing and be okay with it, as if it is normal.
My heart grieves for our daughters, mothers, sisters, grandmothers, wives, fiancés, aunts, family members and friends, who have become the recipients of wrongful and abusive treatment by many members of society, including many of our own people?
My heart grieves for the young woman who is faced with making the tough decision about whether she should have a child that she knows she can’t properly care for, while having other people who could care less about her or her life try to make that decision for her.
My heart grieves for the majority of our youth who have had to practically raise themselves, whether they had mothers and fathers or not, and have had to figure out how to navigate through life on their own, simply because the majority of their predecessors dropped the ball and failed to show them the way, or how to make it and survive in America.
My heart grieves for the mother or father who constantly make tough decisions about whether they should buy their medicine, pay for their health insurance, pay their rent, pay their car note, pay their car insurance, buy their kids school clothes or put food on the table that week.
My heart grieves at the way many of our churches, which have always been looked at as a beacon of light in the midst of darkness, have become so focused on prosperity and having the largest and most beautiful edifice, and not the community.
My heart grieves at the number of people who have been swallowed up by this cruel world, and who have become casualties of hopelessness and despair.
My heart grieves at the negative way select groups of people are treated in this country.
My heart grieves at the injustices in the education system, judicial system and in law enforcement.
My heart grieves at the way families have turned their backs on one another for petty reasons.
My heart grieves for the young man or woman who have had their children taken away from them by the courts, only because they didn’t have the resources to fight the system.
My heart grieves for the many young people who took plea deals for crimes they either didn’t commit or for charges they could have proven their innocence for, all because they were intimidated by authorities and prosecutors, and were forced to take a plea deal on a charge they felt they couldn’t fight because they didn’t have the money to afford a quality attorney.
My heart grieves for the senior citizens or disabled persons, who have been kidnapped by guardianship programs all across the country and have had their money, their assets, their freedom and their dignity stripped away from them by the probate courts.
My heart grieves for the young women and men who have been kidnapped and forced into a life of human trafficking and prostitution by manipulative and abusive pimps.
My heart grieves at the way our rights are being stripped from us every day by our government.
My heart grieves for the soldier who puts his life on the line to defend our great country, yet is treated as if he is a stranger when he or she returns from their service to this country.
My heart grieves at the way many of our elected officials put selfish greed and pride above doing the right thing, as Jesus would have us do.
I could go on and on as I write, but if I were to ask W.W.J.D. (What Would Jesus Do?), I know that He would not be pleased with the way America is treating the broken, the lost, the hurting, the needy, the helpless, the mentally challenged, the poor and the least of these.
There was a prominent Protestant pastor named Martin Niemöller, who spent the last seven years of Nazi rule in concentration camps and was one of the most outspoken critics of Adolf Hitler. He is best remembered for the following quote:
First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out—Because I was not a Socialist.
Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out— Because I was not a Trade Unionist.
Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—Because I was not a Jew.
Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.
There comes a time when we have to speak out whenever we see injustice and wrongdoing, and whenever we see people hurting and in need of assistance. Although my heart grieves at the things I see going on during this season of our lives here in America, I remain optimistic that we have brighter days ahead.
Until those brighter days come, it is my hope that your heart grieves as mine does, and that you will join me in seeking to find ways to make a difference in the lives of the people who need it.
Jeffrey L. Boney serves as Associate Editor and is an award-winning journalist for the Houston Forward Times newspaper. Jeffrey is a frequent contributor on the Nancy Grace Show and has a daily radio talk show called Real Talk with Jeffrey L. Boney. He is a Next Generation Project Fellow, dynamic, international speaker, experienced entrepreneur, business development strategist and Founder/CEO of the Texas Business Alliance. If you would like to request Jeffrey as a speaker, you can reach him at email@example.com