*WARNING – This post contains offensive language.
A few weeks ago I was heading down to Bartow, Florida to pick up one of our regular church attenders that was being released from jail (yeah…that’s how we roll at Impact! Church). With me was Mark Lewis, a black man, dear friend and a volunteer leader at our church. We were early and decided to stop in for a quick breakfast at McDonalds. As we sat to enjoy our Egg McMuffins I noticed two elderly white men staring at me. I went back to eating and talking to Mark. Every time I looked up they were always staring at me. After a few minutes I had to get up to go refill my drink at which point I passed near their table. As I went by them I heard one say in a low tone, “Damn nigger lover!” I don’t know if he meant for me to hear it or not – but I did. I was stunned and immediately went back to the table. I told Mark what had just happened. That is when he had me look around the restaurant…Mark was the only black person in the building – including staff. I was furious!!! I was ready to set aside my “pastor” hat and go pummel an elderly man! I was ready to start throwing chairs through windows and destroying countertops. That’s when Mark told me to calm down and get my temper under control. I asked Mark why he wasn’t angry and he replied, “Because this is the way it is – people are offended that a black man and white man are friends having breakfast.” I wanted to do something – start a protest, create a campaign, go on social media rants, confront folks in the building, incite a riot…anything to make a difference in racist beliefs. But it was Mark that came up with the best solution. He said, “If you really want to fight racism keep having meals with me. Others will see that and eventually change their way of thinking because in the end…love wins!”