When Mary (Bridget) came where Jesus was and saw him, she knelt at his feet and said to him, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.” 33 When Jesus saw her weeping, and the Jews who came with her also weeping, he was greatly disturbed in spirit and deeply moved. 34 (Jesus) said, “Where have you laid him?” They said to him, “Lord, come and see.” 35 Jesus began to weep.38 Then Jesus, again greatly disturbed, came to the tomb. It was a cave, and a stone was lying against it. 39 Jesus said, “Take away the stone.” John 11:32-39
Most of us didn’t know you, and yet we all wept at your senseless death. Your words now echo in eternity “I can’t breathe”. Your name added to the list of victims of the system of Policing.
Mr. Floyd, I go back often to the image and sound of your voice calling out for your “Momma”. Helplessly begging for relief from under the pressure of former officer Chauvin’s knee on your neck for 9 minutes and 29 seconds. Your humanity ignored and violated by persons covenant to protect and serve, they failed you. They failed us all. But you were not alone in your suffering, your community was there pleading on your behalf.
And every “Momma” responded to the cries of your voice, as did every father, sister, brother, aunt, uncle, niece, nephew, friend and activist.
George, God wept at your death, and I trust that Mothering God was there, when you took your last breath. She did not leave nor forsake you. And your cries, your death inspired and unleashed a movement of protest uprising around the WORLD!
Malcolm X said “That’s not a chip on my shoulder, but your foot on my neck.”, today 365 days after your death, Chauvin’s knee on your neck, visible to the world, the Community has a chip on it’s shoulder.
A chip that says Policing must be reformed.
A chip that says you can’t destroy George Floyd’s character to justify his death.
A chip resulted in the bill for George Floyd Justice in Policing act.
I believe Jesus was disturbed at the violence of your public lynching.
I believe, when you called, God sent angels to minister to you. And I believe, we are all called to “take away the stone.”
The stone of systemic Racism
The stone of the Empire
The stone of Hererosexism
The stone of Ableism
The stone of Classism
The stone of Ageism
The stone of Cissexism
The stone of Gun violence
Take away the stone of violence within our communities, now!
Mr George Floyd, today we are all invited to self-reflect, sit in reflective silence, to gather in community to “Rise and Remember” and tomorrow with chips on our shoulders, get to moving The Stone.
Ase and Amen!
Rev. Babette Chatman