Under Our Skin

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Benjamin Watson is a tight end for the Baltimore Ravens, and formerly of the New Orleans Saints and the New England Patriots. In his 2015 book, Under Our Skin, Benjamin explores the topics of race, bias, and justice. Part memoir and part social commentary, the book offers a look at both sides of the race debate and appeals to the power and possibility of faith as a step toward healing. Some of his quotes from the book include:

“Deep in their hearts, millions of ordinary people like you and me—seemingly good people who consider themselves fair and unbiased, who have black and white friends—hold certain opinions, assumptions, and prejudices toward the other race. That’s the problem.”

“We tend to adopt the attitudes and prejudices of the groups we’re in. In short, at some point in life, perhaps as early as grade school, we find ourselves “taking a side” in the racial debate. We become aware that the differences matter.”

Watson continues, “The racial divide is about the reality each side sees. Each side believes its view is the true reality, and we can’t understand why the other side doesn’t see the same thing and understand our reality.”

“The solution to the problem of race in America will be found only by ordinary people, “good” people, looking inside themselves, being honest about the assumptions and biases that have formed, and beginning to change what’s in their hearts.”

“…the problem of race is not “out there.” It’s “in here,” in the human heart. And though there is no task in heaven or on earth more difficult than changing the human heart,I believe in the one who can do it. It requires a supernatural solution…. Yes, I believe in God. You see, I know how God can change a person’s heart.”

Book Reviews:

Benjamin Watson is an important African American voice of balance and sanity in a world of racial chaos and confusion. He has used his platform as an NFL player to speak God’s perspective on race. In this work, Ben will encourage and challenge you to think rightly and righteously about addressing the sin that is destroying our nation. (Dr. Tony Evans, Senior pastor of Oak Cliff Bible Fellowship)

This is a message every one of us needs to hear, and we’re listening to what Benjamin Watson has to say. Under Our Skin is unflinchingly honest, strong, and authentic. You won’t be able to put it down, and it will surprise, challenge, and inspire you in ways you never expected. (Holly Robinson Peete)

Under the skin of every human being beats a heart that has the potential to love and serve the Lord and Master of the soul made alive by the very breath of God. Thank you, Benjamin, for pointing people toward the One who came and dwelt among us, who died to save us, and who lives to prove His everlasting salvation to all who will come to Him. (Franklin Graham, Billy Graham Evangelistic Association and Samaritan’s Purse)

Benjamin Watson is one of the most intelligent and thoughtful men I have ever met, inside or outside of football. When he examines a topic, it is never from the perspective of societal norms or cultural traditions. His observations are always based on sound, biblical principles. I know you will benefit from his insights into race and religion in the United States today. (Tony Dungy, Super Bowl winning head coach)

In his first book, Under Our Skin, Benjamin Watson does a superb job of exposing the many racial stereotypes that exist on all sides, and he helps people to understand that we are all human beings created by God and intended for great things. If we invest energy in understanding others, we will improve our own lives. (Benjamin S. Carson Sr., MD)

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