When I picked my kids up from school yesterday, they were a bit amiss about the 9/11 ceremony at their school. Apparently, everyone had cheered when the leader referenced killing ‘bad guys’ in Afghanistan. I listened quietly to their conversation with each other, processing what had happened.
“I didn’t clap,” my daughter protested. “I mean, it’s not like Americans are good all the time. We do bad things too.”
“Yeah,” my son added. “And children there affected by all this and they didn’t even do anything to deserve it. How would we feel if we were them?”
“I don’t understand why everyone cheered about killing someone else,” the chatter continued as they attempted to understand the perspectives they’d seen.
“I just kept thinking about Priyan Baapa,” my daughter commented, referring to her great uncle whose office had been in the World Trade Center, but who had left the building early that fateful day to pick up Starbucks on the way to a meeting.
They mutually agreed that the whole state of the world is unfortunate, that America isn’t above or below any of them, and that while we fix some problems in the world, we also create an equal number of them.
Out of a seeming nowhere, they determined a solution. “It’s the church,” my daughter mused. “They’re the ones who can help fix all this.”
Now, if we talked about the church like this on a regular basis, I’d have seen this one having been coming. But sadly, conversations in our house reflect deep disappointment with and brokenness over the church as much as they do over the hope its potential holds. But even at 9, her little heart intuitively senses that, for as much as the governments try, they have it all messed up, and that more answers lie at the feet of Jesus than at the foot of the flag.