Friday, February 3, 2017

Love For Our Kids, But Not For Others?

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If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. ... Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.  Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.  It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails. ... When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me. ... And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love. 
~ 1 Corinthians 13, NIV ~

WARNING: a LOVING political post!

We have seen many interesting news articles since the most recent election cycle, and since I am still working towards my citizenship in the USA (I moved here from Australia 12 years ago), I have a slightly different vantage point to politics. 

Yes, I am a parent who has a child with a disability and, therefore, am passionate about his education and, just like you, have filed reams of paperwork so that he can receive medical and therapy services that prove so much promise in his life. 

It is so rewarding to see my son, Jack, read a book! Just last night he wrote, by himself, the number '9'. We exchanged high-5's all over the house! Reaching these milestones and just celebrating his 8th birthday last month constantly brings a sharp reality to the necessity of a positive educational environment in our community.  Perhaps I can just take this opportunity to give a shout-out to our IEP team in our school district. We are so thankful for you. 

Yet recently, even if you remotely subscribe to news media and social media, you will have seen the outcry and personal attacks toward Mrs. DeVos, the current nominee for secretary of education. 

Oh, beloved parents and co-laborers in special-parenting! Let's be careful to show love, even in our objections.  

Here are just a few principles from 1 Corinthians that we can apply to politics:

  • The truth of the Scripture tells us very plainly that if we speak to others without love, it is just like a resounding gong in their ears. Is that how we, as Christian parents, desire to be perceived in an arena where we can actually be valuable team members?
  • If we don't convey our thoughts and concerns maturely, we are just like complaining children who approach conflict with immaturity. I mean this lovingly, let's put away childish anger and grow up. With God's help, we are more than capable to work through difficult situations like an adult.
Lastly, the greatest gift we can leave someone with is Love! What testimony are we, as Christians, leaving on the educational map and social media footprint when all we talk about is negative, unproductive chatter.

Let's be productive. Not just for education, but for the Love of God that He showed to us, that we can show to others. This includes doctors who we think that are not compassionate enough toward our child. It also includes those teachers and support staff at your child's school... and yes, it also Mrs. DeVos.

Perhaps apologies may be appropriate. 

Dear God, we get caught up in hysteria and forget that we are to reciprocate the Love you have shown to us to others. Please give us wisdom in uncertain times so that we may remember, that above all we are to bring glory to you. 

Be Encouraged, 

Jack's Dad

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