We attend an inner-city church in Little Rock, Arkansas. Little Rock is known to be a place of desegregation struggles — past and present. Up until 1957 schools here were segregated, and even now the residential areas of our city are highly segregated. Whites live on one part of town and blacks in the other. Yet my husband and I are not discouraged. Instead, we understand that the best way to create change within our city is to teach our children a different way.
My husband and I drive our family to our multi-ethnic church every week, and I smile to see the diversity every Sunday morning. Helping in children’s church, I see rainbow of faces — children of all ethnic backgrounds, and of all ages!
Even though the world tries to divide, it’s our opportunity as parents to teach our children about God’s awesome, unique design of all people. God desires for all of His children to work, walk and worship together, and our children learn this through our actions and words.
Here are five things we can teach our kids about the awesome, unique design of people:
All people are created in the image of God.
Curly hair, yes! Straight hair, yes! Dark skin, yes! Light skin, yes! All of us reflect His glory. There is nothing right or wrong with people from different cultures or backgrounds… just wonderful differences. Instead of trying to ignore differences, start by teaching your children how to appreciate them. Point out what you appreciate about people who you know and invite your children to do the same. Do you love someone’s dark eyes or light-colored hair? Tell them!
We are similar in so many ways on the inside.
We all laugh, cry, dream. We all enjoy being with our family and enjoy God’s creation. And when we notice similarities, love can draw us together. Whenever your child meets someone different than them, be quick to point out things we all do or enjoy that are the same.
As the years pass we’ll all be drawn closer within a global community.
The better able we express God’s love now, the more we’ll be able to express God’s love in unique ways as we grow. Talk about places around the world. Where have you visited? Where would you like to go? Share your ideas with your kids and invite them to do the same.
All of us believers will be together in Heaven!
In Heaven, there will be people from throughout history and from all around the world. In heaven, there will be more people different than us than similar. In Heaven, we’ll see what it truly means to all be children of God. Take a moment with your child and try to imagine Heaven. Take time to describe the type of people who will be there.
If you’re excited about sharing the wonderful diversity of people with your kids, check out Indescribable: 100 Devotions About God and Science by Louie Giglio. This book is filled with awe-inspiring devotions about Space, Earth, Animals and People. It’s filled with amazing truths and fun facts that will capture the imagination of children and cause them to be amazed by God!
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How do you work to teach your children about diversity? What are some ways you can be intentional about encouraging diversity in your church and community? We’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments!