The Eyes of a Child
By Heart of a Warrior
In the book “My
Warrior Child” written for my girls twenty years ago or more…there is a page that I leave open on my desk these days. The image is of an older man of Asian descent, and it talks about wanting my children to be the kind of people who get to know
others and are curious about what stories created each wrinkle on the face of a stranger. The last line of the page says, “I want you to be a warrior with an open heart, not letting borders confine your love.”
If you are anything like me, you have been struggling with what is happening in Ukraine. We have all been struck by atrocities in various
parts of the world unfortunately, time and time again. This situation feels different for me, and I have challenged myself to really consider why that is the case. Is it because the people “look” like me? Could it be the non-stop video footage
of everything happening in real time that makes it impossible to look away? Might it be the bravery of the people that is just breathtaking? It might be the astounding generosity of the Polish people.
Honestly…I think it might be a little of all of the above with the added ability to worry about the loss of freedoms. I watch women who had careers of their
choosing fleeing for their lives with their daughters who are wearing glitter tennis shoes and carrying brightly colored stuffed animals and... I can’t breathe. That could be me? Worse…it could be my daughters with their children down the road.
If you have always been free as most Americans have, I
am not sure we can imagine the sudden loss of everything we have chosen for our lives being ripped from us. I am not sure we can wrap our minds around walking miles to whichever border would open their gates for us to flow through by the millions. I have never
contemplated my daughters being in a situation in which they had no control of or choice in their future. I do now. I think about it a lot as both an American…but more importantly as a Christian.
We tend to want to put ourselves in a bubble and protect what we have at all costs. I get it. Yet do we really think our God, who sent his son for all of us, wants
us separated by borders and nationalities? Or do we believe he wants us to live as his children taking care of and loving each other on this shared planet he created for us?
I watch the Polish people give new meaning to serving as the hands and feet of Christ and pray that kind of open love is there for every child….in every part of the world who
is fleeing from violence and oppression. We may not be able to see beyond our state lines or national borders right now, but one day if we make it to the ultimate finish line…we are going to be there TOGETHER. Maybe the reason we have so many challenges
now, is to help us learn to get along in what our God has waiting for us.
If you struggle finding common
humanity, I challenge you to look into the eyes of a child...ANY child and find God there. The cover illustration done by Ms. Lela Mac, focuses on the eye of a child and the hope our God offers. Explore all the details and the meaning she has captured within
the universal eye of a child of God. It's strange and thought provoking that twenty years later, my prayers are pretty much the same for my girls. This book could have easily been written last week and not the 1,040 plus weeks ago when I first put pen to paper.
“Don’t hit back; discover beauty in everyone. If you’ve got it in you, get along with everybody. Don’t insist on getting even; that’s not for you to do. “I’ll
do the judging,” says God. “I’ll take care of it.” Romans 12: 17-19 MSG