It’s a funny thing that if my children are engaged in a movie, they are almost in a trance-like state. However, on the rare occasion their daddy and I actually attempt to watch something, a very loud game of 20 questions immediately begins!
This was the case the night of the State of the Union Address. Normally, we would have been rushing to get in the bed, but since this was a part of history, we let the boys stay up to watch until it ended. Within just a few minutes, the questions started flying.
“Why does that lady behind President Trump look so angry?”
“Why are those women wearing white?”
“Do those people get tired of standing up and sitting down?”
“Why aren’t the military men standing?”
“Does he mean what he’s saying?”
“Why does the Vice-President look so happy and peaceful?”
“Is the lady behind Trump talking to herself?”
“Why do some people not stand?”
“What is that lady reading?”
“Is it rude that she’s reading while the President is talking?”
“Are they in the White House?”
“How does his hair do that?”
We truly wanted to hear what he was saying, so we kept asking them to be quiet. Eventually, two fell asleep and one quietly played with Lego blocks.
Over the weekend, I began to feel terrible about how we handled that situation. Our older boys (ages 9, 8, and 6) are actually very patriotic and interested in the current events of this country and many of their questions were reasonable. Though we selfishly wanted to listen to what was going on, they had every right to be curious about this “learning experience” we allowed them to stay up for. After all, they are Americans who will eventually inherit this great nation.
As Christian parents, it is our responsibility to raise independent, God-fearing children who take a stand, fight for what they believe in, and become soul winners. As American parents, it is also our duty to raise law abiding, tax paying citizens. In order to do both of these things, we must take time out of our busy schedules to teach them the truth and inform them of the state of our country. If we don’t…someone else will.
So, on Monday morning as a part of our school day, we watched the State of the Union Address again and paused for discussion many times! They were captivated by the real Buzz Aldrin and the three heroes from WWII. They were appalled by Pelosi’s hateful attitude and confused as to why the ladies in white refused to stand when President Trump asked everyone to “choose greatness.”
They were excited to hear that “our military is the most powerful on earth, and America is winning every day.” They were proud of Matthew Charles for completing 30 Bible studies and delighted that he’s a free man. They admired the little girl who raised money for St. Jude and beat cancer. They thought the tough ICE Special Agent and the brave SWAT officer, who took seven bullets, were extremely cool.
My boys are familiar with the Democrats and Republicans and always enjoy researching candidates and going to vote with me. Once I explained where each group was sitting and why they were standing and applauding or remaining seated, things made much more sense to them.
Here are just a few of their thoughts about the major issues:
“Tonight, I’m asking you to defend our very dangerous southern border out of love and devotion to our fellow citizens and to our country.”
“Not one more American life should be lost because our Nation failed to control it’s very dangerous border.”
9-year-old: “Why wouldn’t America want to build a wall and protect our people? If people break the rules to get in, won’t they break the rules once they live here?”
“There could be no greater contrast to the beautiful image of a mother holding her infant child than the chilling displays our Nation saw in recent days. Lawmakers in New York cheered with delight upon the passage of legislation that would allow a baby to be ripped from the mother’s womb moments before birth. These are living, feeling beautiful babies who will never get the chance to share their love and dreams with the world.”
8-year-old: “Why is that man (Chuck Schumer) smiling and talking to that guy beside him? Did he hear what he just said? That man looks evil!”
“And then, we had the case of the Governor of Virginia where he basically stated he would execute a baby after birth.”
6-year-old: “How could anyone kill a baby like ours?” he questioned in anger as he held his 5-month-old baby brother’s hand. “Look how mean that lady behind Trump looks. She must hate children. Does she hate her own kids and grandkids, too?”
“To defend the dignity of every person, I am asking the Congress to pass legislation to prohibit the late-term abortion of children who can feel pain in the mother’s womb.”
At this, half of the crowd erupted in shouts and applause. The Republicans were immediately on their feet. The “women in white,” on the other hand, sat stone-faced.
8-year-old: “What is wrong with those women? God made them to be mothers. Mothers aren’t supposed to be murderers. How can they not stand? How could any woman want to kill a baby?”
“Let us work together to build a culture that cherishes innocent life. And let us reaffirm a fundamental truth: all children – born and unborn – are made in the holy image of God.”
After watching Pelosi bite her lip and cringe in her chair at this statement, I paused the speech to ask the boys what they were thinking and how they felt about this.
9-year-old: “I think it’s scary. Adults are supposed to protect babies and kids. Not try to kill them.”
6-year-old: “I don’t trust those women in white.”
8-year old: “Why can people get in trouble for spanking kids, but these people can get away with murdering babies?”
My boys had many other comments and questions throughout the speech, but the most profound came when President Trump talked about the young American soldiers risking everything as they took part in the most momentous battle of history on D-Day.
“They did not know if they would survive the hour. They did not know if they would grow old. But they knew America had to prevail. Their cause was this Nation, and generations yet unborn. Why did they do it? They did it for America – they did it for us.”
9-year-old: “If that was in WWII, wouldn’t we all be the unborn? Wouldn’t that mean they were fighting for us, and Trump, and even that woman that looks like she hates America? Someone fought for her so she could be here, but why doesn’t she want us to fight for babies that are unborn.”
6-year-old: “I’m gonna fight for them. I’m gonna do it for America like those men did.”
Once the speech was over, our discussions continued longer than I had imagined they would. “What can we do to help our country?” I asked them.
One boy decided to become President and make major changes. One said we should pray hard for women to love their babies and see if someone could give those mean, disrespectful adults a spanking. One wants to serve in the military, like his daddy, so his children can be free and protected.
“How will our country ever be united if everyone is hateful and divided?” I questioned. “What’s the answer to all of these problems?”
Thinking they would respond with many suggestions and outlandish solutions, I was stunned.
With no hesitation, the 6-year-old responded confidently, “Jesus.”
I was speechless. In a short amount of time on this earth, he’s already got it figured out. That’s the one and only answer for this confused and chaotic world.
Through the praise of children and infants you have established a stronghold against your enemies, to silence the foe and the avenger. Psalm 8:2