In Featured, Pastor Paul's Blog

By Pastor Paul Gauche

Today’s Word: “Verdict” as in… a verdict reached; a verdict announced. Just moments after 3:30PM on the afternoon of April 20, 2021, text messages hit millions of cell phones around the world. The jury in the trial of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin for the killing of George Floyd on the early evening of May 25, 2020, after just over 10 hours of deliberation had reached a verdict. Then for over 30 minutes it seemed as if those millions of people collectively held their breath together. Finally, just after 4PM CST, the verdict was read. The jury returned guilty verdicts on all three counts: second-degree unintentional murder, third-degree murder, and second-degree manslaughter. Verdict reached. Verdict read.

In the days since the verdict, conversations about what this means and the ramifications for all of us has gained enormous momentum. One central question is emerging: What now?

People from nearly every neighborhood in the global community now seem to be expressing cautious hope, tempered joy, guarded optimism, along with sober reflection that while we’ve come a long way, there is still so very far to go.

A generation from now our grandkids along with their children will be facing another verdict. That verdict will be a judgment on how effectively the global family responds to the transcendent call of the ancient prophet Micah to every generation: “…do justice, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God.” That verdict will measure our response to these questions: What now? How are we talking to our children about issues of racial justice? Are we standing up for those who cannot stand and speaking for those who have no voice? If not, why not? If so, what works best? Are we eradicating systematic obstacles to equal opportunity and equal justice? Are we investing ourselves in societal change so that trials like this never have to happen again? How well do we love one another?

Our hope is that when asked, the response will be “So say us one, so say us all, we are doing justice, loving mercy, and walking humbly with God.


Paul Gauche is the Pastor of Life Transitions at Prince of Peace. His posts are part of his #100days50words project, where be blogs about a different word each day. You can follow his project on Instagram (@pgauche), or on his blog, Thriving Rhythms.

Recent Posts

Start typing and press Enter to search