What is the point of all the battles over de-segregation and all of the ground gained over the past 30 years if we’re going to self-segregate anyway? I certainly can’t fault anyone for doing what they think is best for their children and I’m grateful I don’t have to face such a decision. But the entire conundrum depresses me.
Fear is such a nefarious thing. We make so many fear-based decisions, and we think we’re doing the right thing, but really all we’re doing is shutting off the possibility for good to bloom in the world. To use a Christian term, we’re shutting off grace.
I read of this situation and I think of two children who could learn something from each other, and in so doing, maybe break the cycle of fear and hate that runs unfettered through our communities.
But what if it doesn’t work out that way? What if the children learn bad things from each other, what if prejudice and hate bloom in the world instead? We can’t know how it will turn out; we simply must have faith.
I think this is what Jesus meant when he said
“Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. I tell you the truth, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.”
To act in faith despite fear, to be a peacemaker and changemaker despite fear, to stand in the gap for a righteous cause despite fear, these are the lessons of Jesus. Not, you know, crap like this.
How do we keep getting it wrong?
I don't think God wants us to retreat to our separate corners and stew in our hate and mistrust. Maybe as adults we're too set in our ways to change. And sometimes it just takes more faith and courage than we can muster to let our children "come to him."
It's enough to break your heart.