What If We Looked At Justice As An Invitation To Practice Care?

We are all deserving of care, even when we’re being held accountable. What if we looked at justice as an invitation to practice care? What do justice and accountability look like to you?

What If We Looked At Justice As An Invitation To Practice Care?
Via Wikimedia Commons

Jeremiah warned his people that God said they would have to abandon their city to survive an enemy invasion. They didn’t take the news well. 

City officials arrested Jeremiah, threw him into an underground well and left him to die. Word of his arrest spread until it reached Ebed-melech, one of the king’s servants. 

Forgetting his status, Ebed stormed up to the king, saying, “These men have done evil in all that they did to Jeremiah.” 

The king ordered Jeremiah’s release from the well. Ebed brought clothing and rags to protect Jeremiah’s skin from rope burn as he was lifted out of his underground prison. 

Unfortunately, Jeremiah was still not free. He was placed under the king’s guard so he couldn’t spread God’s warning. 

But God didn’t forget Jeremiah. When the invasion began, Jeremiah was released to live with his community.

Jeremiah’s story isn’t too different from the experiences of incarcerated Black people. The harm we see within prison systems bleed into social practices like “cancel culture,” which teaches us to treat people like they’re disposable. 

Ebed’s actions remind us we have the power to center community care even as we challenge harmful systems.

The story of Jeremiah and Ebed invites us to reflect on what justice and accountability look like when we center the well-being of our people. 

We must not repeat the violence of the systems we’re fighting to abolish.

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