Red and Yellow, Black and White
I am convinced children are the same everywhere. It does not matter their social status, their parent’s income, their ethnicity. They are still the same deep down. After working today with kids, I can see why Christ said we are to be as children before the Lord.
The OMC blocked off a portion of the street and our carport in order to meet the community in which we live via a block party. The goal was to meet adults through their kids. Consequently, we heavily emphasized kid attractors: face painting, snowcones, basketball, and a bounce house.
I took a turn in the bounce house, figuring I’d bounce for a few minutes, then go waste the afternoon watching a movie. Bounce houses make good icebreakers. I had forgotten how much I enjoy being around kids. These kids from the neighborhood are just like the kids from my home church. There are the quiet ones, the bullies, the ones with too much energy, the shy ones. In particular, there were four children I got to know through the bounce-house “ministry.” Andy was the oldest, a somewhat self-confident boy of ten. He enjoyed being around older guys, but still wanted to feel slightly in control. Destiny was eight. She needed to win. Especially when it came to beating her older brother. Faith was a quiet and shy girl of seven. She enjoyed watching us and tackling Peter Skurdall and I when our backs were turned. Evan was four. He was cautious at first, but warmed up to us quickly and was the most aggressive of the four. I wonder why wrestling in a bounce-house is almost therapeutic for children. These kids needed to play. You could see it in their eyes. Their lives are not easy. A four year old boy deserves a father who loves him and spends time with him. A ten year old needs a hand to guide him as his life progresses. I only saw one grown man come to the party with his children. Children need their dads to spend time with them. Even if it coming and watching them bounce around for twenty minutes, they need to be shown they are important. I got to do that for an hour and a half today.
Hopefully the parents of these children wonder why Peter Skurdall and I would bounce and roughhouse with their kids for an hour and a half, why we would let them tackle and beat up on us. Why The OMC put on a barbecue and entire block party for free with the express purpose of getting to know people. This was just the start of building relationships with our community with the ultimate purpose of witnessing. But it is indeed a start.