Friday, December 12, 2014

Advent 2014

Friday, December 12


I teach aspiring teachers and each year I spend some time working with my students on their multicultural sensitivity.   I remind them that they need to be sensitive to the fact that all the children with whom they might work in the future may not hold the same beliefs as they do, come from the same backgrounds, celebrate the same holidays, etc.  Early this year, one of my students commented, "Yeah, like when they would tell us to make Father's Day cards and I didn't have a father."  This is why I have trouble with the analogy of God as a father; it just doesn't apply to everyone, yet God's love does.

Five and a half years ago when Keith and I became parents to Jacqueline, as cliché as it may be, it completely changed our lives.  We were no longer able to pick up and do things like we used to and the focus of our lives completely changed to putting her needs at the top of the list.  Though the most notable change I have found in myself since Jacqueline arrived is the expansion of my own capacity to love.  

While I believe that God shows God's presence through many of life's miracles, the love that grew exponentially, love which I didn't even know I had the capacity for inside of me until the birth of Jacqueline, is my most tangible example of who and what God is.  While my love for Jacqueline is still limited by my humanity, I believe it connects me to the love of God in a way that I had never experienced before. 

Unfortunately, everyone doesn't have the experience of loving, present parents.  We will all make mistakes along the way of parenting, and because we are human we won't fully live up to the extent of love that is available to us through God.  Yet, everyone has access to God's unfathomable love and through our relationships with one another, especially with our children, we get a glimpse into that "Kingdom of Heaven" that Jesus worked so hard to explain. 


- Emily Richardson-Dion



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