“Mom, I am playing with that brown boy – he’s nice.”
So said our son one warm summer morning. He had just come off the playground at Rosedale Park just outside Baltimore.
“Yes, he is. Have fun!” she told him, and so played out another scene in the process of training up a child in the way that he should go.
Our sons were 4 and 5, our daughter 2 or 3, probably, at that time. They were brought often to this place to have fun. Mom had to get them out of doors, and other moms and dads did the same.
There would be other playgrounds and beaches, pools and fields, gyms and sidewalks. At all of them, our kids made friends.
They discovered the blessing of association, the intimacy of friendship. They learned about others and enjoyed them. It wasn’t hard work to let them learn. They played mostly, argued sometimes, even got mad every now and then, but we always went back to the playgrounds and fields and pools and gyms. The others came back, too. And they all grew up as kids are known to do.
Normal, Healthy, Together
Through the years, there were hundreds of little moments like this. It wasn’t as if we determined to do this. We didn’t craft a strategy or embrace some goal of raising good friends and neighbors. We just lived – and still live — in Baltimore, right in the City in fact, and this was the way it was – normal, healthy, different children had fun. Together.
As a result, these children grew up to be men and women of heart and faith and truth.Today, they grieve with those who grieve. It hurts them to watch things that ought not to be. Click To Tweet
Today, they grieve with those who grieve. It hurts them to watch things that ought not to be.
They pray. They wonder.
They cry. They stand.
They watch. They lead.
And because they hope, I hope.
This World, This Generation
I have to say they know things that I never knew. This is not their father’s world. It’s their world. And I am welcome to enjoy this world, as long as I am willing and available to learn what they can show me.
Mostly, they show me what they learned from their mother. “Do not forsake your mother’s teaching” says Proverbs 1:8 and these kids followed this.
“See, what you do is …” is how she prefaced her important lessons on all manner of things.
They discovered that all things are of God. And that all things are for our sake. And that all things work together for good because of Him and His purposes.
These truths guided them. They lived in other countries. On many occasions, they wound up in groups where they were the different ones — the few even — in classrooms, on basketball teams, in marching bands, on stages, and at parties. And they took no thought of this at all. They found that they fit. They felt at home, with friends, with family.
They played. They laughed. They lived. They fell in love, really.
“See, what you do is …”All along the way I think they heard their mother saying this. I know that they still hear her.
“See, what you do is …”
Believe the best.
And have fun.