By now you’ve seen the news. Yesterday’s shooting in Dallas was the deadliest day for law enforcement since September 11, 2001. And we know that darkness does not drive out darkness and hate does not drive out hate but for some reason these things still happen.
With swollen eyes and heavy heart I keep thinking about my children and how to talk to them about all of this. And then I think about all of the children who had daddies a couple days ago and now do not. I am undone.
We say we will teach our children that love is the answer. And it is. But one day our children will come to understand that love for others comes at a great cost. That love is sometimes met with hate, with pain, with anger and we are charged to love anyway. They will come to realize that sometimes unconditional love will mean being misunderstood or despised or rejected. That sometimes a person who loves well is not met with love in return and that it is solely because of skin color or economic status or career choice. That sometimes a group of cops show up to a protest to protect and serve and not to hate or hurt and yet they are not met with gratitude but with gunfire. And all that hate leaves nothing but widows and fatherless children and fear and brokenness.
One day our children will realize that our Savior, in the name of love, laid down his life at the cross and it was bloody and ugly and hard but it was love. And if we are really loving well, we will find ourselves laying down our own wants, needs, desires-our very lives to spend ourselves on behalf of others. Because that’s what Jesus did for us and because it’s the only way.
Love is action, love is sacrifice, love is forgiveness and service and all of those hard things that don’t come naturally to our flesh. But love is a miracle and it will win out in the end. That is what my kids will hear. I will not stop longing or praying for a world that does not repay evil for evil. A world that chooses forgiveness over bitterness. A world where the church would be the great equalizer- known for its peacemaking and unity and its leadership in loving well. I will not stop teaching my kids love-no matter the cost.
Even when we are full of fear, we will choose love. And love will cast out fear.