When my family was faced with a seemingly never-ending trial, my mom used to say, “Children, it’s praying time.”
Today, in the aftermath of the latest murders of still more police officers, it is almost like I can still hear her voice reciting that phrase. To my mom, and to me, too, prayer is the answer to all our struggles. But with prayer, comes the responsibility to act or work toward our goal of living in harmony with each other.
So, while we pray, we must also take it upon ourselves to practice goodness toward others. Today as I think on the latest killings and Mom’s request for us to pray, I have added still another prayer to the list, “Lord, how long? How long will this killing of brothers and sisters be tolerated?”
We Americans are walking through a dark and low valley right now, making it seem as though our country is a killing field. It seems this way because of all the drive-by shootings, which have taken the lives of too many of our innocent children, and now the seemingly mass murders of the men and women who have vowed to protect us.
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As we walk through the valley, some of us hand-in hand, I am reminded of a scripture in the Bible from II Chronicles 7:14, which says:
“If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”
Our land needs healing. Right now. There is little or no respect for authority. And those who are in authority often abuse their office. People are afraid, so much so, that some are afraid to leave the confines of their own homes.
This shouldn’t be. Not in our America. As citizens of this country, we have weathered many great storms, but the storm we are in right now, is one of the greatest. We are killing our own. Is there a greater storm as this?
Let us start the healing process by reaching out a friendly hand to someone of another race or nationality. Lets go back to teaching our children that life is precious; that we must learn to live together peacefully in our America the beautiful. It is a small, but significant step, but if each one of us reaches out to just one more person, we will eventually be overcomers together. And the healing process will begin.
I know what some of you are thinking: “Bea Hines, you are living in a dream world. Face it, we are in a downward spiral and nothing can bring us back.”
That’s your opinion. I choose to believe that all things are possible with the Lord. I believe we can, again, become the country that other countries look up to. Yes, we have our struggles — racial and all. But we have never stopped fighting to become a better nation. And yes, I do know that there will always be some bad apples in the barrel. But you can weed them out by making an individual vow to be a peacemaker wherever you are.
So while things look mighty bleak today in America, I believe I can see the sun peeking through the clouds. And I believe that together, we can overcome evil with good, and become the citizens we were born to be.
For the sake of our children and our children’s children, can we at least, try?
UNIVERSAL TRUTH CENTER PRESENTS WEEKEND OF ACTIVITIES
The Universal Truth Center at 21310 NW 37th Ave. in Miami Gardens invites the community to an evening of dance presented by the center’s “Steppers” from 5:30 to 9 p.m. Friday, July 22.
The Steppers entertain with music from the 1960s and 1970s. There will be refreshments. Tickets are $15 each and all proceeds will benefit the Adult Education Ministry Tech Fund.
On Saturday, July 23, the center will present the 12 Powers seminar, led by Tawnicia Rowan. At the seminar, participants will revisit the story of the late Rev. Johnnie Coleman, and learn her teachings on the 12 spiritual faculties of humankind and gain new insights on one’s indwelling potential.
If you go, you are asked to wear your birth month color.
The July lesson series at the center will continue at 10 a.m. Sunday, July 24, with the theme, “Boldly Live a Life of Abundance: Prosperity’s 10 Commandments.” The Rev. Charles Taylor, senior minister of the center, will use parts of Georgiana Tree West’s book, “Prosperity’s Ten Commandments,” to preach a sermon that will direct parishioners on how to raise their levels of consciousness and allow more space for good.
Following the service, congregants are invited to join the Adult Education Ministry in the center’s community room to celebrate the close of a successful 2015-16 academic year.
CAVE QUEST VACATION BIBLE SCHOOL SUMMER CAMP
Palm Springs United Methodist Church, 5700 W. 12th Ave. in Hialeah, will have a Cave Quest Vacation Bible School Summer Camp from 9 a.m. to noon Aug. 1-5 at the church. The camp is open to children ages 4 to 11.
At the camp, children will participate in Bible-learning activities, sing catchy songs, play teamwork-building games, crafts and enjoy treats at the Cavern Cafe.
Registration is $20 for the week. To register your child, call 301-822-3232 and leave a message. Same-day registration is also welcome.
BAHÁ’Í OF MIAMI-DADE COUNTY COMMUNITY FIRESIDE
The Bahá’í of Miami-Dade County will host a Community Fireside event at 7 p.m. Saturday, July 23. The event will be at the Miami Bahá’í Center, Suite 209, 9300 S. Dixie Hwy. The topic is “Towards Understanding of Baha’u’llah’s New World Order.”
Thomas Carsey of the Bahá’í Center said, “The human family is enriched with different cultures, religions, world views, and lifestyles. We hope to examine how these differences can be respected while we develop a sense of belonging to one human family.”
The event is open to the community. Light refreshments will be served. For more information call 305-753-8298, or visit MiamiBahai.org.
Also, the center will host a community devotional at 10:30 a.m. July 31. It’s free.
2016 ISLAND DANCE AND JUNKANOO
St. Agnes Episcopal Church at 1750 NW Third Ave. in Overtown will host the 2016 Island Dance and Junkanoo at 8 p.m. July 29 in the church’s Blackett Hall.
Tickets are $12 each and there will be food for purchase: fish sandwiches with coleslaw, conch fritters, conch salad and chicken wings.
For tickets and for more information call Elestine Allen at 786-296-3818.
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