UNTRENCHED: Conversations About Race

Our nation and our churches are divided over race. 

Let’s talk about it.


Scripture is a resource like no other.

At Emmanuel, Scripture is our Capital S Standard for Belief and Behavior.  All of the additional resources that we recommend below should be filtered through the lens of God’s Word.

The following three Bible resources will equip you with two different translations and three sets of commentary to aid with interpretation and application.

"Untrenched" Message Series

Join us Sunday mornings – Online or In-Person!

Our five-part message series is designed to help you to engage in healthy, productive, and God-honoring conversations and to offer an inspiring, hope-filled vision for the world we can build together.

It was important to ensure that this series was shaped by voices from a wide range of ethnicities and backgrounds.

Over the course of the last year, we’ve had countless conversations, watched hundreds of hours of videos, and read thousands of pages in books.

As a final step in the process, in the months leading up to the series launch, we vetted our ideas through our Elders, the Northwest Conference, and persons of color from our own ECC-family.

If you know people who are entrenched in their positions regarding race, this may be the resource you’ve been looking for!


"Let's Talk Thursdays"

Engage in the conversation!

On October 28, November 4, and November 11 we’re hosting, “Let’s Talk Thursdays.”

These events provide an opportunity to discus the topics of your choosing in greater depth.

We’re especially thankful to have Hollis Kim from the Northwest Conference on site to help us navigate these challenging conversations with the “Learner vs. Judger” framework that he’s teaching us to use.


Recommended Resource: "Dream with Me" by John Perkins

If more people were like John Perkins, the world would be a better place.

While countless voices call from one or the other “trench”, John Perkins has been doing the hard work of authentic, Biblical reconciliation for a lifetime.

If you only make the time to look at one of the resources we recommend, start here.

Dream with Me: Race, Love, and the Struggle We Must Wi

Synopsis: According to recent surveys and studies, race relations in the United States are the worst they’ve been since the 1990s.  Many would argue that life for most minorities has not significantly improved since the civil rights era.

What can we do?  “It all comes down to love,” he says.  “Love will always be our final fight.”

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Influencers to the Influencers: The Big Two

We can learn a lot about the present from the past.

Few voices have shaped America’s conversations on race in the 20th century like Malcolm X and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

These resources provide valuable insight into the lives and perspectives of these formative leaders.  While we don’t agree with everything that either man taught, if you listen to their voices, you’ll hear echoes in today’s conversations.

The Autobiography of Malcom X as told to Alex Haley

In the searing pages of this classic autobiography, originally published in 1964, Malcolm X, the Muslim leader, firebrand, and anti-integrationist, tells the story of his life and the growth of the Black Muslim movement.

To get the most out of this book, we recommend the audiobook narrated by Laurence Fishburne.

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Where Do We Go From Here by Martin Luther King Jr.

In 1967, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., isolated himself from the demands of the civil rights movement, rented a house in Jamaica with no telephone, and labored over his final manuscript. In this prophetic work, which has been unavailable for more than ten years, he lays out his thoughts, plans, and dreams for America’s future.

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Influential Authors

When it comes to race, we all have a lot to learn!

Below, we’ve listed six books from six influential voices.  The first three are representative of the content and perspectives that you’ll hear from voices on the left and last three are perspectives that you’ll hear on the right.

While we certainly don’t agree with everything in each of these books, we believe we’re all going to be better equipped  to enter into difficult conversation if we have a better grasp of the positions that people hold and why they hold them.

If you lean left politically, we invite you to begin with the right-leaning resources (the last three).  If you lean right politically, we invite you to begin with the left-leaning resources (the first three).

You can also use the names below to search for additional content from these authors along with critiques of their work.

The Color of Compromise by Jemar Tisby

Caste: The Origins of our Discontents by Isabel Wilkerson

Be the Bridge by Latasha Morrison

Fault Lines by Voddie Baucham

False Black Power? by Jason Riley

Discrimination and Disparities by Thomas Sowell

Influential Video Series

Listen to voices that are shaping the perspectives of people you know

We’ve selected two popular video series for you to take a look at.  As was the case for the books above, the first three lean left and the last three lean right.

Difficult Conversations with a Black Man (with Emmanuel Acho):

The Inaugural Episode

A Conversation with Police

White Allergies


Street interviews featuring former police officer Brandon Tatum

Black Lives Matter conversation featuring Taleeb Starkes

Political Influence conversation featuring Jason Riley