Guiding My Children to Do the Same

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Injustice.

How often do we hear about it? See it? Or experience it first hand?

Raising children in a world where injustice occurs both discriminately and indiscriminately, I find it difficult to explain the motivation behind the ruthless power, the hideous oppression and inexplicable exploitation we find in this fallen world. I feel gutted by such extreme depths of injustice, prejudice, and maltreatment. Do you?

In our Happy Blue School, we enjoy a serene, positive and productive learning environment most of the time. Exploitation and disregard for human life are not even considered or ever allowed. It’s a pretty great place to be. Currently the boys are studying three US States. Micah chose California so that he could learn about the Gold Rush. Jake chose Oregon because that is our home state. And Caleb chose Georgia because pastor and author and Witherow boys’ hero, Andy Stanley lives there.

In the course of learning Georgia history, Caleb has been introduced to slavery, the Civil War, Martin Luther King Jr. and the Civil Rights Movement in the United States. As we have discussed these topics, Caleb is incredulous. Why would white people make black people sit at the back of the bus? Why would you need laws to be nice to each other? Why didn’t they treat each other like God would want them to? Our family hosts black African pastors and their families in our home all the time. Caleb counts Black Africans as both friends and mentors. Caleb is ten years old but already has an understanding that our conduct and right behavior is indicative of our relationship and honor of God. How we treat, bless and care for others brings praise to His name.

David wrote these words thousands of years ago:

Offer right sacrifices

   And trust in the LORD. Psalm 4:5 NIV

In David’s time, animal sacrifices were offered in atonement for the sins of the people.

Sacrifices were a symbol of the heart’s condition of obedience and submission.  In our time, the same is true. A right sacrifice is one that is pleasing and honoring of our God through Jesus Christ.

Through Jesus, therefore, let us continually offer to God a sacrifice of praise – the fruit of the lips that confess his name. And do not forget to do good and to share with others, for with such sacrifices God is pleased. Hebrews 13:15-16 NIV

Yes, there are countless acts of injustice in our world. However, we can make it a point out of our devotion and our love for God, to love and respect our neighbor and show our family, community and the world the reason for our confidence, security, reliance and hope. Our conduct and character are what others observe. If they see how we obey and submit to our God – even when it conflicts with the world – and how we trust in the providence of our LORD and His all sufficiency, we may help our friends and neighbors better grasp the hope we have in Jesus Christ. We may inspire them to seek Christ and trust in Him because we are choosing a different way; we do not choose power and oppression. We choose to follow Christ and praise the name and way of the Father. For us, greed, corruption, exploitation, negligence and maltreatment are never allowed.

Why does injustice happen in this world?

I don’t know. I don’t understand it. And I alone cannot control it.

What can I do?

I can follow the exhortation of Micah, the prophet: 

He has shown you, Heather, what is good.
And what does the Lord require of you?
To act justly and to love mercy
and to walk humbly with your God.
  Micah 6:8 NIV

I will offer my God the sacrifice of righteousness – ceasing to do evil and instead learning to do what is right in Christ. I will trust Him for the grace and mercy I receive this day and every day thereafter as I act justly, love mercy and walk humbly with Him and hopefully guiding my children to do the same.

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