“Children experience these broad social trends mainly as the absence of committed, trustworthy adults in their lives.”
The effects of inequality on America’s Kids, Michael Gerson
Phoebe has learned about zombies. I can not convince her the monsters are not real. So I need to go with her places, like the bathroom or downstairs. She may not trust my knowledge of reality and zombies, but she does trust me to take out any zombies we encounter! (I, personally, put more faith in my mental abilities than my physical zombie fighting skills…)
“neglect, isolation, loneliness and broken trust” — The Washington Post editorial detailing poverty’s effect on children left me depressed. When you measure the impact it is not the missing stuff, but the missing people that affect children. The reasons for this are all over the place. Part of it is the breakdown of the family. Part of it is economic stress – the minimum wage is far from a living wage. Part of it is struggling schools. But for children involved, inequality is not missing i-pads, but that there is no one there when the monsters come.
Last night before bed I was reading Kingdom passages preparing for a message. I came across Mark 9:1. Jesus tells the gathered crowd and disciples that some of them “will not taste death before they see the Kingdom of God has come with power.”
The power of the Kingdom has arrived. It is not armies to crush our enemy. It is the truth that Christ has changed everything. We are no longer fighting over stuff or land or even ideas, our battle is for relationships. Our war is not fought with weapons, but love. Our battle is won by sacrifice. Really, in the Kingdom life is not a battle, so much as a love affair.
This is the power of the Kingdom. The power of the cross and resurrection.
On a practical level, the problem of inequality is too big. Sure we can vote for change, but the problem is beyond politics. It is in need of prayer. And in need of God’s people to pour out from our churches with His love. So let go of the impossible national numbers and look around. God sees a world full of His children (those who have come back to Him and those whom He is still waiting to receive). Which of His children can you help? Whom can you walk beside when they are scared?
Maybe it is time to volunteer at a food bank. Maybe send some encouragement to your neighbor. Maybe go and fix the broken mailbox. Maybe clean out your closet – not your junk, but stuff you would still wear. Maybe … Watch and the maybe will present itself to you.