Written by Aria Davis

We’ve grown up in a time
where pain and stories are just being pried
from the heavy lockboxes 
they have been hidden in.

stuffed down, compressed 
by time and policies,
is leaking out.

And we’ve begun to realize
that those old scars we thought
had healed long ago
are still open, bleeding wounds
festering beneath the surface.

We hear about centuries of

And we are struggling under
the weight of this hurt,
trying to grasp 
the meaning of reconciliation.

We are learning about the failures 
of past generations
and wondering 
how we will avoid 
making these same mistakes.

We will change our society,
of this I am certain.

But will it be for better
or worse?
Will our pride be our downfall?

That feeling of perfection, 
of superiority
over the people of the past
would destroy us.

Our pride would only continue
this cycle of injustice.

We are compelled to realize
that we are just as broken and
prone to failure
as the generations before us.

Yet, this understanding
should not lead us to despair,
but to hope.

For we know God
has taken our brokenness
and redeemed it,
making us whole.
And that He empowers us
to restore our relationships
with others.

This is reconciliation.

As trauma and pain
are slowly brought to light,
let us remember,
we do not face this alone.

We can dare to reach out in love—
approaching with humility,
listening to those
who ache with grief,
and seeking justice
for the wounds that were inflicted.

But most of all,
let us pray and be filled with hope—
the wild, beautiful, life-giving hope
that reconciliation is possible,
and even this
can be redeemed.

We are the next generation,
and we are learning
how to heal.