About the Author

Grace P. Cho is a Korean American writer, poet, speaker, and the Editorial Manager at (in)courage. She believes telling our stories can change the world and desires to elevate women of color’s voices in the publishing industry. Learn more at @gracepcho and gracepcho.com.

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  1. Grace,
    Thank you for this very vulnerable post that allows me to walk in your shoes for a short while. This reminds me, a bit, of when, during the war with Japan, in WWII we rounded up all Japanese Americans and forced them into internment camps. Thousands of everyday Americans were treated like spies and spent three or more years in these camps just because of their roots. I can’t even fathom what it must be like to be lumped together like that. It’s sad to realize that the river of prejudice still runs wide. It still separates by color, ethnicity, religion, etc. Jesus was a Middle Eastern man, very likely with dark skin and eyes. Today, in Pakistan (during this COVID-19 crisis), Christians are being discriminated against in receiving food relief from NGO’s. Everyone else is receiving assistance, but not the ones who would most closely identify with Jesus because they are called “the unclean ones.” I join you in praying for our world – that we would band together in our humanity and not separate and segregate based on the arbitrary lines we draw.
    Blessings,
    Bev xx

    • I am so sorry prejudice has reared its ugly head in your life! Please know when we pray we are praying all God’s creatures are protected from harm – physically and spiritually. Also, convert those who fear to trust that the work of compassion, mercy will become preeminent in their lives. Thank you for being so open, you touched my heart.

    • Thank you so much for your reply, Bev. The prejudice does run deep. I’m praying for a revealing of that prejudice that comes with repentance and change!

  2. Grace,

    May God Bless you for sharing a touching story. Allowing us to walk in your shoes & understand what it must be like. Prejudice has been around since the dawn of man. Even the pharisees wouldn’t associate with “certain people”-mostly Samaritans. There has always been & will always be a sense of “I’m better than you” attitude. Blacks-African Americans & Jews have been persecuted for years. All it takes is ignorant people who can’t see beyond the skin. They don’t take the time to get to know the people-really know you. What we need now is a huge revival in our country. Christians banding together-via computer- & praying hard for this nation & the world. We all need to have the sensitivity of Jesus. To be able to look at people with compassion & love-to see them as we are flawed humans in need of a Savior. Not Asians, Jews, blacks, etc. Praying for all concerned in this pandemic. May God bring an end to it & the bigotry surrounding it quickly!

    Blessings 🙂

  3. Oh, Grace. I wish I had words. I just don’t understand people: how they think, what makes them think it’s okay to ever treat another human being as less. Nevertheless, your prayers and vulnerability in a time like this are beautiful and necessary. Thank you for sharing with us. I hope it inspires us all to be a little more like Jesus today.

  4. Thank you for sharing your feelings on a very sensitive subject. My son (an adopted Korean American) has been worrying about this very thing. I am sorry for your experiences with racism. I know racism touches your soul and tries to destroy it. Thank you for speaking out. I pray more people will start to do so. When my son was little I use to tell him to “Stand Strong” when I dropped him off at school. Please “Stand Strong” and continue to advocate for those who need it.

  5. Grace,
    Such an appropriate name for you! May God grant us the grace to deal with the ignorance and prejudice as much as we deal with the virus. Unfortunately this attitude has gone on since the beginning of time whenever someone is different, the us vs. them thing. Christ came for everyone to show us we are all valuable and worthy and loved. No one caused the virus, it could have started anywhere like any other disease, viral or bacterial. In unity we will fight this and God watches over us all to comfort us as we fight the unseen enemy. Bless you.

    • Judy what you said is so true Christ came for everyone. That why he went to Cross. To show the world he loves us. I agree with all you wrote. Thank you for writting it. We have God Love us no matter what. John 3 verse 16 says it all. For God so Loved the World He Gave His ONE AND ONLY SON TO DIE FOR US. So that tell me God didn’t care what color we where. He did that out of LOVE. I Love also what you wrote it says it also so beautifully too. Love Dawn Ferguson-Little Enniskillen Co.Fermanagh.

  6. Grace, Thank You!!! Thank you for sharing this … your story! We need to pray that out of this ugly Covid19 virus everyone will be a more kinder, less judgmental and compassionate country, nation, state, local communities and neighborhoods! God’s Blessings on you and your family! ✝️ Your name says it all… Grace!
    Pat

  7. Thank you, Grace.
    In these days of isolation and uncertainty, we need one another’s voices for the multi-perspectivalism that fear denies us.
    I’m praying in earnest for our hurting world.

  8. Grace, I am deeply sadden for the way things are being projected at Asian Americans. I too am Asian and it pains me to see so much hate projected against all Asians. I know it’s out of fear and the unknown and although we try to not allow it to hurt our hearts, it does. May we remain faithful and trust in God during these times. I pray we will be reminded that this is not a race thing but a human thing and as humans, let’s all be compassionate towards one another and encourage each other. This too shall pass and when it’s over, we would all be standing here praising our God and loving on our fellow humans. Thank you for sharing this message during this difficult times.

  9. It does not matter what the world says or thinks about you. Your skin color should have nothing to do with it. Especially at this time Grace. Especially with this coronvaries. No one has right to judge or say this or this. You remember you are a Daughter of the King and what Jesus says about you is all that matters. Like that kids song. I learnt in Sunday School when small it sticks in my mind at this time. Jesus Loves all the Children of the World Red and Yellow Black and White. We are his Children. More so if Saved. So we are to do the same especially if save love all people of walks of life all colors of skin and not judge them. As we are not the Judge. Jesus is the only judge of the world. I had a true friend alot older than me. Who is now in Glory. Who taught me alot as follower of Jesus. Instead of talking about that person and say your only saying she used to say. Your not only saying. Your judging in Gods eyes. Why don’t you pray for them. She was so so right in what she said. Here words today now she is gone ring even more true to me than ever more to me in these times. Plus she said another true thing. Bidden or not Bidden God is watching. Meaning God sees everything we do. So we have to careful. What we do and say. Like another song I learnt at Sunday School when small. It is be Oh Be Careful little eyes what you see there is a Father up above who is watching. Then it went on the song to say Oh Be Careful little mouth what you Say there is a Father up above who is watching. How true theses songs are and the words of my friend who is now in Glory. So in these time we are in we don’t have to listen or let the Old Devil tempt us to get hurt by Mans words. Because of skin color or the way we look. Especially if we are saved. What is most important is what the Bible says about us. What God thinks of us not MAN. Look up on Youtube the Father’s Love Leter. Just type in on Youtube the words the Father’s Love Letter. You will hear how much your heavenly Father God Loves you. So you then can close your ears to Man and the Old Devil using him to get to you. Because of your skin color. As after listening to it will not annoy you. You will sing the songs I have put on here. Also know you are a Daughter of the King of the world who is Jesus who finds you just Beautiful. That is all that matters. Not what man or anyone else thinks. Love Dawn Ferguson-Little xxx

  10. My heart breaks to know that Asian Americans are treated like you described. I live in the middle southern section of our country and had no idea this was going on until I read your words. It is my prayer that all people who treat others with such disdain due to their race find Christ in the midst of all that is going around. May our nation once again be called a Christian nation.

  11. Thank you for sharing your story and your hurts with us today! It is sad how people treat others and I do hope that through this people will come out of it better. Better in understanding. Better in attitude. Better in communication. Better at not judging or holding onto contempt. Better at seeing Jesus is the Hope of the World. I will add these things to my prayers, to pray for those being discriminated against in a very real and unfair way and for those doing the discriminating. As the Kevin Costner character says in “Hidden Figures”: “at Nasa we all pee the same colour!” Hold fast to the truth that you are loved. Hugs across the screen

  12. Grace –
    My heart breaks for you and others who are going through this experience. I was beyond appalled when I heard COVID-19 referred to as the “Chinese Virus” during a press conference. At a time when our nation needs to come together, our leader is dividing and isolating. My hope and prayer is that we will find a way to come together for all Americans (and people throughout the world) who are struggling with this pandemic.

    May your family be safe, happy and healthy!
    Elizabeth

  13. Thank you Grace, for having courage in sharing this, and reminding everyone that our words matter, how we treat every single person matters, for such a time as this. May we all pray for and uphold our Asian American brothers and sisters.

  14. Grace, I’m so sorry you went through this. But God has used it for His glory. You stepped forward and shared your pain. And I’m with the one who suggested we used this time to Pray for our country and let revival come in. I’m praying for it and hearts and minds to be healed. For us to surrender to the Lord ask for forgiveness and be in relationship with him again.

  15. Thanks Grace! I do the same with making sure people hear that I can speak perfect English – and then I remind myself that it shouldn’t matter if I do or not. I’ve been receiving strange looks in grocery stores for weeks, watching people dodge me or sanitise right after I pass by, and it’s embarrassing and dehumanising. Last week, my neighbour came after me screaming racial insults and swearing. It’s easy to get discouraged.

    What gives me hope though, is when church leaders will include their stance against racism in their message week after week. It gives me hope to read through the Psalms and through the gospels and remember that this is not new, that God isn’t surprised or challenged. It gives me hope when people can move past the, “just ignore them” phase, and really listen and commit to taking action. And it makes me feel safe when I’m in a space that recognises that these divides existed already and that I’m not “being divisive” by speaking out against abuse. ♥️

    • Adora, my heart breaks. I’m so sorry for all the ways you’ve experienced racism these last few weeks. I keep saying, “We’re in this together, ” and I mean it. You are definitely not being divisive when speaking out against abuse and racism! Praying for courage, endurance, and help. <3

  16. Grace – you are a gift to me and you have taught me so much these last few years. Thank you for sharing this…I know it came at a cost and I appreciate you. xoxo

  17. Grace, thank you for sharing this. I am very sorry. Sorry that you have gone through this and sorry people can be so judgmental and bigoted. I pray that Jesus’ love will overcome the hatred created by fear. I pray for this pandemic to end quickly and we grow and become better people from it. We need Jesus’ love more now than ever before.

    Peace,
    Nancy

  18. I’m so sorry…it’s hard swimming against the current…so thankful that despite our circumstance we can still continue to be salt and light where He has placed us…Don’t give up…all of us at some time have been “Discriminated “ against …helps us to identify with our Christ…doesn’t make it any easier…I believe that in many ways we are grieving… bless you for sharing your heart…

  19. Love to you, Grace. It shames me to think of this horrible treatment of a beautiful group of people. I can’t claim to understand it. I definitely do not condone it. I will speak up for you. I will stand with you. Be blessed, dear one!

  20. Good morning Grace . I’m so sorry about all this craziness and mainly how it affects in so many negative ways. I’m reminded by the words of Jesus when He said, “forgive them Father, for they know not what they do”. Sadly, there will be even more persecution towards all of us who stand for Jesus Christ. I hope you find comfort knowing that you and I “a Mexican American”, whose parents crossed the river grande to give their children a better life, stand together as children of God’s powerful army on earth! We are His children, yellow, brown, black, and white. And as the song says, precious in His sight. Hang in there dear sister.

  21. Grace, I am horrified that the racism you’ve described is happening. But I know it’s true, and I’m thankful you and other friends have shed light on it. Thank you for sharing your heart here; I can’t imagine it was easy.

  22. My heart breaks for all those people who are being treated like a modern day leper. You didn’t ask for this, they didn’t ask for it.
    Wish I could give you a big hug, look you in the eyes, and tell you that you are so very loved. ❤️

  23. Grace I’m so very sorry that you and others in your position have been treated so wrongly. I’m old enough to remember when all Japanese Americans were put into camps just because of their ethnicity. It was wrong then and it is wrong now. Fear is our adversary along with Satan who spreads fear and hatred whenever and wherever he can. Our sin is falling into his trap
    Rise above sweet sister. You were made for better purposes and our God calls you his beloved. Walk in truth and light. You are loved beyond this world’s false sense of what is important.
    God bless you and keep you

  24. Dear Grace, your post moves me a great deal, and I can’t tell you how sorry and saddened I am over such responses of fear and prejudice leveled against Asian Americans, and Asians, period. I’m of European descent, and likely people of my complexion are those spewing (literally and figuratively) such vitriol on our Asian friends. You don’t say specifically, but I presume it, based on what I myself witness in the news and online. President Trump should not continue to identify COVID 19 as “the Chinese flu,” because of the unnecessary havoc that creates, as you delineate in your post. I understand that past names of flu epidemics (like West Nile Virus and Spanish Flu) were a way to identify a flu source. However, in this age of instant communication and the likes of social media, such identification quickly morphs into unfounded prejudice in a nation already filled with it. So leaders need to do all in their power to mitigate such unfair treatment. Calling it Corona Virus or COVID 19 clearly identifies what is being described, and that is all that’s needed. We all understand it. Some of our dearest friends are Chinese and Japanese Americans. Plus, we have dear friends who are Asian who are not Americans; they are students in university here in the States. All our Asian friends, whether born here or not, are experiencing painful prejudice and spewed venom over this virus. The virus is the enemy, and not people of a particular descent. We grieve for them and have tried to do all in our power to support them, if from a distance now. I can’t thank you enough for publishing this brave and vulnerable piece. It is a big step in the right direction, making others aware (if they have not been) of what you have suffered and are suffering. My deepest prayer is that all Americans, especially Christian Americans, would fight the virus and not each other and not others different from them. We fight through prayer and through precaution. When we are prudent in words and actions concerning COVID 19, we love our neighbors as ourselves. This is what Jesus desires and commands. Thank you again for sharing from your heart. May God protect you from this flu disease and from the disease of prejudice.
    In Him,
    Lynn Morrissey

  25. My heart breaks for everyone who is treated like a modern day leper in these days. Wish I could give you a hug, look you in the eyes and tell you that are loved.

  26. Thank you for writing this. I have Asian-American friends and I worry for them in this respect. I will be sharing this. Thank you, Grace. May God be with you and your family. May God heal our hearts. May He heal the world of this disease, according to His will.

  27. I feel for you and although I cannot help or do anything about what you are experiencing. It is obvious that the president’s attitude to any race is one of ignorance and is not helping the whole thing. The irony is that America greatness which he seem so pleased to keep on saying was built by different races and his own mother went there from Scotland. So had circumstances been different and his mother had chosen another way to change her life, he would not be where he is, and seems to not realise or in any way seem grateful for that fact.
    I hope that you can find some peace about the situation and I will be praying in the coming days.

  28. Grace, I’m so grateful for you, friend. For your voice and courage and willingness to share your pain to bring light to the darkness and help us as sisters and a community to do better. Jesus, come.

  29. thank you being so vulnerable and sharing your heart. People can be so cruel. And it’s hard to ignore. I know Jesus was rejected many times. Guess it’s in these moments we just have to have ask God for His strength and love. But don’t give up, don’t give in. Standing with you in prayer!! you are loved & accepted!

  30. Jesus love all the people that He died for..no matter who they are/were, live or whatever the ethnicity He Gave to them. John 3:16 “For God so LOVED the WORLD…”so sorry that so many people even in the USA have lost sight of God’s goodness, compassion and grace, His Mercy and compassion to the leper, the lame, the blind, the demon possessed! It is a disgrace and embarrassment to single out a race or country, as done by the leader of the free world and many others who followed suit. Grace, may our loving Abba Father grant continued comfort as He catches your tears and hears your prayers, dear Sister.

  31. Grace,
    Ignorance bows at the altar of fear. It is the unreasonable characteristic of our humanity that has witnessed centuries of rejection, oppression, and subjugation. But, God. Your discomfort, a word I am not using lightly, is real and disheartening, especially when this pandemic spares no ethnicity or class. But, God. Your tears fell because you grieved the hope and love of the community and nation in which you were born. But, God.

    You were made in God’s image; you were fearfully and wonderfully made. You, Grace, are the light that sits upon a hill. I applaud you for speaking your truth. I am honored to call you my Sister-in-Christ, although we have never met. I pray the peace that surpasses all understanding ushers you through this season with a head held high, propped up by your unwavering hope and faith in Jesus Christ. Be well.

  32. Grace, I am so sorry. God has given you a voice that needs to be heard and stories that needs to be told. Thank you for being willing to let us sit beside you and see the disgusting, painful reality of our nation’s sin, racism and ignorance. It makes me sick to my stomach to know this is happening, and I apologize for all of it.

    Sharing this must have been really hard as each word you wrote ushered darkness into the light. Thank you for your courage and uncommon vulnerability. It’s going to take all of us, and many wounded warriors like you, to help us see our sin and seek Jesus to heal us, and our land with all the brokenness within. May we become voices in the wilderness declaring and living the truth and love of Jesus.

    Also, I love you friend. I love everything about you!!

  33. Grace, I am so sorry. Thank you for being willing to let us sit beside you and see the disgusting, painful reality of our nation’s sin, racism and ignorance. It makes me sick to my stomach to know this is happening, and I apologize for all of it.

    God has given you a voice that needs to be heard and stories that need to be told. I know sharing this came at a high cost with each word you wrote that brought this darkness into the light. Thank you for your courage and uncommon vulnerability. We acknowledge that it will take all of us, women like me and wounded warriors like you, to help us see our sin and turn to Jesus to heal us, and all that is broken within us and our nation. I’m with you, and I love you Grace. I love every thing about you!!

  34. Dearest Grace,
    I could hardly read your post today for the tears welling up, in sadness and dismay that you and many others are suffering so much more than necessary through all this unrest. Sending you (isolated) hugs across the ocean from Australia, Please know you are cared about and loved (by an 80 years old white Australian of British parentage). I noticed one raply mentioned Stand Strong so I’ve sent a copy of the poem I wrote on this some years ago, plus a verse form another one.
    STAND STRONG THROUGH THE STORM
    When difficulties happen,
    We’ll remember to stand strong,
    Keep constant in our hearts
    That to Jesus we belong,
    Our hope and faith and trust
    Will help us to get by on…
    God is our strength and refuge–
    This text we can rely on!
    When an adverse wind is buffeting
    And causing us to sway,
    We’ll remember we must pause-
    In the midst of problems – pray!
    Whatever the outcome,
    No cause for dismay,
    We’ll stand strong through the storm
    And our Lord will win the day.
    4.4.2002
    God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.
    — Psalm 46:1

    We need to know that Jesus cares,
    In all our troubles Jesus shares,
    And all our burdens Jesus bears,
    If we just keep Him in our prayers.
    Much love to you. God bless.
    Camilla

  35. It is so hard for me to believe that people are STILL this ignorant and unkind. And even more, I HATE that you and too many others routinely experience this sort of prejudice and racism. It is one more reason to drop to my knees in this season, a time shrouded in questions and uncertainty. Praise God, to follow a God who is always and only for us, who loves us and includes us and calls us wonderful. Thank you for your courage in sharing the truth of your life, for bringing light into darkness, and for inviting us to walk in your shoes.

    SO thankful to know you! Love and hugs to YOU, precious Grace. xo

  36. This is such a good post. Thank you for making me aware of this – I will be praying also for Asian Americans and for greater love, compassion and understanding in all of our hearts.