These past few months have been unsettling and bizarre, like living in the upside down of Stranger Things. Not knowing when things would return to normal, and what “normal” is going to look like once this COVID-19 is finally disabled. Since May 8, with the horrific video of Ahmaud Arbery being gunned down for going for a run in his neighborhood, and then on May 25, another gut wrenching video of the last few minutes of George Floyd’s life as he was pinned down and asphyxiated by a police officer as a crowd watched. I can’t feel at peace while these murders occur regularly. I’ve spontaneously cried every day since May 25, as I watch my precious little ginger-haired and blond-haired daughters play without a care or responsibility in the world. If I don’t pray every day, I could be anxious and sick to my stomach that this is the world in which my innocent daughters are growing up.
Black Lives Matter are chanted on sides sick of the violence and are out of solutions to stop these acts of hate. Dark-skinned boys who are round-faced and innocent now, will soon grow up. Instead of people having people smile at their big brown eyes and curly black hair, some will step back a bit in cautious suspicion. Blue Lives Matter are chanted by families of officers who are scared for their loved ones lives not making it home at the end of the shift. All Lives Matter dilute the message of both sides, and yet it is true. We are all created in the image of God. Every human life is worth living. Worth saving. Worth protecting. But we must all reset our perceptions, our assumptions, our preconceptions. The only way to change is to actually make an effort to ENGAGE with someone who is not like us.
As a parent, my responsibility is to teach my children that YES, we all do look different. God painted all of us various shades of brown from peach to milk chocolate to ebony to burnt sienna and tan. To see these differences shows the creativity of God, our Creator. How boring it would be if we were all the same color, same accent, same heritage, same everything! We must teach our children that everyone is equally valuable and has a story to share. We are all different, we all have different backgrounds, ethnicities, languages, and cultures, so we can learn from each other, expressing the love of Jesus to everyone we meet. We all are worth dying for. Jesus proved it with arms outstretched.