For the second night in a row the violence in our broken world has me lying awake. Heartbroken over the condition of our country. Grieving for the loss of lives senselessly taken. Saddened by the idea that HATE has won out. Terrified for the future of my children.
I feel powerless. I feel overwhelmed. I feel afraid. When I watch the news and see such total disregard for human life, I am slapped in the face with the reality that the world we live in with my children is a fallen, hurting, and dangerous one. It’s 2016, and injustice, oppression and racism is rampant, causing good and kind people to fear for their lives because of the color of their skin.
Let’s be honest. I’m a white woman married to a white man with two white children who will never truly know the trials and suffering racism brings. But that is exactly why laying awake at night feeling powerless and afraid can’t be my only response.
“If you are neutral in times of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor.”
As mothers to the next generation of Americans, we have a huge responsibility. Change has to begin with us. This world is broken and dark, but even tonight, as I prayed with my daughter for the hurt in our country, while my heart was absolutely broken, I saw light. The same light I see in her everyday. It is our job to protect that light in our children so that it cannot be snuffed out by the world’s messages of hate or the idea that anyone else is “less than”.
Our children, with their unconditional love and untainted hearts, aren’t born judging and hating others. I won’t just teach them tolerance. I will teach my children to love. I will teach my children that EVERY life is precious and valued. I will not paint for them a picture of a country with a HISTORY of inequality, but I will talk to them about the progress that STILL needs to be made. I won’t stop at teaching them not to be hateful, but to stand up for those who fall victim to hate. I won’t teach them to be color blind, but to appreciate and celebrate the unique offerings every life has to offer. Not only will I pray with them for the hurting, but we will be intentional in finding ways to be the answer to that prayer.
I’m only one person, but I have to believe that there are far more of us “one persons” who are driven by kindness than anger. There will always be more good than bad. Even when it doesn’t seem like it. There will always be more police officers justly protecting and serving. There will always be more people who are practicing love than hate. As one of those people, we have to be just as loud. We have to love just as fiercely. We can’t just lay in bed worried and fearful. We have to be as radical in our love as the enemy has been in its hate. Because the more mothers there are raising loving humans, the more loving our tomorrows can be.