Monday, February 18, 2008

My children are color blind and that warms heart

My children are color blind and that warms heart

One of the reasons we picked Troy, Ohio for our family and Stand True was our friends, the Welborns. Brent has done a lot of the artwork for Stand True, as well as the layout work for our educational materials.

Brent and his family have been huge blessings in the lives of our family. They have three beautiful children: Bennett, Johanna and Eve. Our kids love to play with the Welborn kids and were very excited to find out that we would get to live by them.

It's funny how kids don't notice things that so many adults do. They just see the Welborn kids as kids that are fun to play with. Unfortunately not everyone sees them that way. Eve, their middle child, is adopted and also African American. You can imagine the looks they get when they're out and Eve looks up at Amy and says mommy.

What is amazing is how my kids have never said a word and have not seemed to even notice anything different about Eve. They simply see a little girl who they love to play with. They don't care about the color of her skin, they just care about their friend Eve.

Why is it that a young child just sees the human person without adding qualifiers or labels to separate her from other people? Why is it that my children can understand that Eve is a beautiful creation of God and not care about some so called race difference?

Little children see things so purely until adults contaminate their innocence.
They understand that there is really only one race, the human race. They don't care about skin color, nationality or anything that we adults use to hold against each other.

It is not that kids are naive about things they shouldn't be. Kids know things, like what is the difference between right wrong. My kids know when they have done something wrong, you can see it in their eyes.

So why can't we adults take a lesson from the innocent minds and hearts of children? Why can't we recognize the personhood of every single human person regardless of skin color, nationality or any other difference we may have? Why is it that they can look at a baby in the womb and understand that she is simply a baby that is younger than other kids?

This weekend, as my kids played in the back yard with Eve and her sister and brother, I was humbled by the love and blindness that my kids had towards her.
They taught me a lesson this weekend. Even though I saw Eve as the beautiful little girl she was and did not care at all about the color of her skin, I still sometimes ask myself what other people are thinking when they see her and her family.

Why should I care what other people think? Why does my mind think of questions like that? I know that someday, as my children get older and they start to pick up on the hatred and bigotry that surrounds them in this world, they will be faced with decisions about what they believe. I know that I cannot shield them from everything that is wrong with this world. However, I do know that I can raise them and nurture them with the truth that will help mold who they become as people.

More importantly than what I can do for them is what Christ can do. I know that, as their father on earth, I have a duty to raise them with the love my Heavenly Father has for me. I know that I have the responsibility to teach them how to see others as our neighbor, no matter who they are or what they look like. I know that I have to teach them to love their neighbor as themselves as God's word teaches us. I know that the best way to teach them that is to live that way myself, and to love people in the way I want them to love people.

I thank God for the Welborns and the love they have for their children. I thank God that they have shown Eve the same love that they have for their natural born children and embraced her the way Christ embraces us when He adopts us as His own.

We all have a duty to our fellow man to love them the way Christ loves us. We all have an opportunity to live out that love in a way that will teach the next generation that there is only one race--the human race. We can let our love be as blind as a child if we look at the love Christ gives us and embrace that as our standard.

Matthew 22 - 36"Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?" 37Jesus replied: " 'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.'[b] 38This is the first and greatest commandment. 39And the second is like it: 'Love your neighbor as yourself.'[c] 40All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments."

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