News about the pandemic is reported from continent to continent, country to country, state to state, and city to city. A microscopic virus has quickly spread around the globe; our world has never seemed so small. In all of God’s great beautiful earth, we are now currently homebound, glimpsing one another from afar and from our devices. If you turn on the TV or the news on your phone, you access the world.
Current headlines include a teenager being bullied because she looks Asian while a family in the supermarket is stabbed for the same reason. Dying patients are refusing care from Asian-American medical staff. Hate crimes and racism aren’t new to our country. How can we make a difference?
There’s always good in the bad. We need to help our children find the good.
How can we communicate to our children and those around us that Jesus loves all people, with no regard to their looks or culture? Can we teach our kids to be globally minded? What might that look like? Here’s some suggestions to consider:
1) DISPLAY MAPS AND GLOBES. I remember my grandma had map wallpaper in her living room. I would sit and stare at all the countries to see which ones I knew. That might be extreme, but you could display a globe for your children to touch and read.
2) BECOME FRIENDS WITH FAMILIES OF OTHER CULTURES OR RACES. Invite them over. Show your children that you are comfortable talking with them.
3) COOK FOODS FROM OTHER COUNTRIES. Plan a menu with your kids. Let them choose countries they are interested in.
4) LEARN A NEW LANGUAGE WITH YOUR CHILD. There are many apps available in which you could do this as a family.
5) READ BOOKS ABOUT OTHER CULTURES OR ONES WRITTEN BY AUTHORS OF COLOR. Your children might get a new perspective on the world.
6) IF YOU ARE OF A MULTICULTURAL FAMILY, TEACH THOSE TRADITIONS TO YOUR CHILDREN. Preserve those memories that your grandparents passed to you.
7 HAVE YOUR CHILDREN LISTEN TO MISSIONARIES WHO SPEAK AT YOUR CHURCH. Invite them over. Pray for them.
8) IF YOU HAVE THE FINANCIAL RESOURCES, VISIT OR LIVE IN ANOTHER COUNTRY. It’s such an eye-opener. I’ve been overseas for the past ten years. My children think globally. They have friends from all over the world.
9) TEACH YOUR CHILDREN GOD’S LOVE FOR ALL. Sure, they probably know Jesus loves everyone in the world and died for them. Teach them the Great Commission. We need to reach all cultures with the gospel. And most fascinating, in my opinion, is that all races stem from Adam and Eve. We are one.
These are ways you can help your children be globally minded. Then they can turn around and influence their friends to do good to all people. We live in a fast-paced, Internet-connected age. The world is literally at our fingertips.
Perhaps someday, newscasters will report how quickly the gospel is spreading, continent to continent, country to country, state to state, and city to city.
Tina Cho is a teacher and the author of Rice from Heaven and Korean Celebrations. Her latest book, My Breakfast with Jesus, celebrates various morning food and faith traditions from around the world. She has also written over 100 guided reading books for various educational publishers. Tina grew up in Iowa, but is currently living and teaching in South Korea.