"Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? Therefore we have been buried with him by baptism into death, so that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life." (Romans 6:3-4)
Today we grieve with the families and friends of those who were murdered in the church in Charleston, South Carolina. But grief is not the end of the story. Just as Jesus, who was murdered on the Cross, turned tragedy into powerful, positive change, so too, the Holy Spirit will use the church tragedy by bringing change to the symbols of racism around us.
Dylann Roof committed the murders in an attempt to start a race war. The death of those nine Christian people has had the opposite response. People of different color, race, and religion have come together in peace and unity. Confederate flags are coming down throughout the south. Even large stores are refusing to sell confederate flags. From despair, the Holy Spirit weaves hope and faithful change.
May we continue to bring our worst fears and trials before God, and let God transform death, "so we might walk in newness of life."