by Jan Lewis
As a small child growing up in the Baptist church, Sunday school classes were all about Bible stories and songs. One of our favorites went like this: “Jesus loves the little children, all the children of the world. Red and yellow, black and white, all are precious in his sight, Jesus loves the little children of the world.” Some people today will scream about the song being “politically incorrect.” How dare people be labeled by the color of their skin?
But the truth is we do label people. Bigotry and racism is one of the deep- rooted evils in the human heart. It was present during the time of Moses. It was present during the days that Jesus walked on earth. It is present even today, when we like to talk the talk, but often fail to walk the walk. And its presence manifests itself in ways that I would never suspect.
One of those ways is in our adoption services. Catholic Charities agencies across the country find themselves with fewer and fewer babies available for adoption, due to the dramatic cultural shifts that have occurred in our society. Young women are choosing to single parent, grandparents are stepping in to raise their grandchildren, and the scourge of abortion claims untold precious lives each year. Couples desperate to adopt, to offer a loving and nurturing home to an unwanted child, often have to wait several years before they are able to realize their dream of becoming parents.
I would think, then, that they would be grateful when God offers them a child that is precious, beautiful and perfect in his sight. That it wouldn’t matter if this baby was red or yellow, black or white. A parent’s love for his or her child is to be unconditional.
And yet, couples across the country will pass on a baby simply based on the color of the child’s skin. How very sad that all of the potential that a tiny baby carries, all of the love and joy that it can bring into a home, are so easily dismissed because of racism.
I struggle not to huge, for judgment is reserved for God. I recognize that raising a child that is “different” brings challenges with it.
Of course, raising any child brings challenges. No child comes with a guarantee, but every child comes to us perfect in God’s eyes. Every child deserves the same unconditional love and acceptance that each of us has received from our Savior.
While the evil of racism lurks in our hearts, we can overcome it. We can choose to see with Christ’s eyes and to love one another as he first loved us. All are precious in his sight.