A few weeks ago I was window shopping with my daughter. Every year we pick a few new ornaments for our Christmas tree. She stumbled across this one at one of our favorite shops, Sugarboo & Co., and asked if we could get it. She said that we need more peace in our world. I couldn’t agree more.
These last few weeks have been tumultuous ones, to say the least. The build up to the election and the days following have been brutal to watch as people I know argue with each other all over social media and emotions of all sorts run wild. The year in itself has been full of struggles. It’s been a year of many moments to ask for grace as well as many moments for offering forgiveness. People are hurting for many reasons, people are going through difficult things, and our world is so uneasy and not at peace.
There are so many things our kids will have to contend with in this world that we didn’t have to grow up with. Even though we don’t watch tv much in our house, we don’t live in a bubble and kids learn plenty from others. It’s our job to preserve their innocence, but to also arm them with the best tools, so that they can share their light with the world and make it a better place. So it’s our responsibility to talk to them, help them understand things, pray with them, continue to teach them the importance of love, peace, and kindness, and yes, we even have to teach them that really tough one…forgiveness.
In a time where many hurtful things are done and said, a time when it’s so important to stand up for what you believe in, and a time where so many of us have a hard time pardoning others for their mistakes (even though we make them ourselves), I thought it was important to write my kids a letter to remind them of how they can make a positive difference when they are adults some day in these same situations.
To My Wonderful Children:
I am so proud of the little people you have become. One day, sooner than I would like, you will be adults. You will be faced with lots of difficult decisions, a lot of unrest in your world, and struggles of your own. I want you to remember a few important things when you step out into this world on your own.
As we always tell you, being loving and kind are the most important things you can be to all people, even those that may hurt you. Make sure you always do your best to help your fellow man and show love to others. We will always need more love in the world.
Peace starts with you and your family. Everyone in this world may not always be receptive to it, but getting along with others no matter how difficult it may be will help make the world a better place. Be the peace you want to see in the world.
Politics can get nasty sometimes, but don’t let it change who you are and what you believe in. It’s important to get involved and stand up for your values and beliefs. Have intelligent conversations with people and don’t let anyone tell you that you are less for what you believe. Hate is not a political party, so never support anything that supports it and always combat it with Love.
Forgiveness can be one of the hardest things to do and be consistent about in this life. Not only are we commanded to do so by God and to forgive as he has forgiven us, but it is the best thing for you, your heart and your soul. People will hurt you and the ones you love. You can’t avoid it, but you can choose to forgive when you are wronged or when people make mistakes. It’s harder to forget and you might have to remove yourself from situations that cause you pain over and over again, but never stop giving grace to the people and things that seem unforgivable. It will make you a stronger and better person if you can rise above things that have caused you pain.
Remember that we love you for who you are. Everyone is different and has something that makes them special. We hope that you will always embrace those who are different from you.
No matter what you pursue in this life, make sure you come from a place of peace and love. One day, when you vote or choose to get involved in politics, make sure you never forget who you are and what you believe in. Don’t forget to ask for forgiveness, try to do your best to not make the same mistakes over and over, and give grace to the people who need it from you.
I know the two of you together can make this world a better place. Fight the good fight…always.
Love you to the moon and the stars,
May your holidays be full of peace and may your decorations be reminders of its importance in every part of your life.