Sunday, July 10, 2016

My Perspective as a Mom of Both White and Black Children

How do I as a Christian mom of both black and white children respond to the cruelty, hatred, and horror of the last week?  What is my role?  Is there a solution?
I do believe that sin and Satan are  at the heart of the issue (Ephesians 2:1-2). That to me is obvious.  I know that God is over all (Colossians 1:17).  I believe that sin will lose in the end (Revelation 20:10).  So, how do I protect and disciple my children in this mixed up world?
I keep coming back to the verse found in God’s Word.   2 Peter 1:3 says “His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence.”
I cannot heal the innumerable hurts of those dealing with loss, abuse, and prejudice.  I can, however, prepare my family to respond by consistently bringing them to a power source for life.
Evangelizing and discipling my children are essential to making it possible for them to thrive in a broken world.  Using truth that God has already given has to be the beginning. I do not walk around quoting verses or thumping my Bible (or phone). I can, however, use God’s Word in all situations.  Whether I am dealing with a tearful child, an angry explosion, a resentful attitude, a selfish response, or a doubting heart:  God gives us his power through his word.
Realistically, the rest of my children’s world does not follow this pattern or believe this truth.  So how is it even possible?
All of us are sinners (Romans 3:23).  Even if we tried, we cannot be perfect.  We will mess up.  Yet my kids need to live lives that are above reproach to the best of their ability.  God calls us to live so there is not even a hint of ungodliness (Ephesians 5:3-4).  Sadly, many of the individuals who have been in the news this week were identified not only by their color but also by what someone THINKS they did or did not do.  There is no way to govern what others think of my children, but my kids have the choice to live a life that is aboveboard.
I have to trust God that he is telling me the truth when nothing else makes sense.  When my kids are confronted with racism, they need to hold desperately to the truth that God has created each one of us in His image and with a purpose. No one and nothing can stop God’s plans for our lives (Job 42:2).  Each of us is worth his gift of salvation he gave by dying (John 3:16). We are all valuable.
My kids will need to respond in grace.  Hurtful words are real, but they do not deserve any ruling power in our hearts and minds (2 Corinthians 10:5).
When an authority figure tells them to do something (assuming it is not against God’s Word), my kids need to obey immediately. It is not their right to assume that authority and disobey (Romans 13).
If at all possible, my children need to seek peace (Romans 12:18).  That may mean giving up what they think is their right at the moment.
Kindness, compassion, respect, and forgiveness all need to be so obvious that no one has to do doubt that God is real in my kids’ lives. (Ephesians 4:32, Colossians 3:12, I Peter 3:15-17, Colossians 3:13)
My kids need to be the ones to seek to outdo each other in honor (Romans 12:10).
Their words need to be seasoned with salt, so they know how to answer every person.  Their words can preserve peace and also be part of the healing process (Colossians 4:6)
As believers, my children should have fruit as evidence:  love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control (Galatians 5:22-23)
God’s Word is so powerful.  My role as mom of many means that I keep my kids connected to that power source.  Our culture wants to make my black children feel devalued. Culture wants to place itself above everyone and everything.  I want my kids to find strength when hurtful words are hurled, when fists are thrown, and heaven forbid shots are fired.  My kids need not only a personal relationship with God, but also a passionate love for His word.
I cannot find any other answer to life's chaos, but God.

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