Tonight’s bedtime prayers with the kids had a good “teachable moment”.
I prayed that the refugee situation would end well, with all of the displaced and frightened people having their needs met. My inquisitive kids asked what refugees are, and I explained in simple terms that didn’t involve discussing terrorism, Syrian politics, or Islamic extremism. This led to some muddled (but earnest) questions from Lily (4.5), who tried to connect everything to Star Wars or Doctor Who. So, I explained the situation using elements of Star Wars, connecting the Empire with terrorists, and I must have used the word parable, because I then had to explain what one was.
So, I paraphrased for them the parable of the Good Samaritan. I connected the robbed and beaten man with the refugees, and the men who wouldn’t help – and should have known God wanted them to do – with those too afraid or hateful to welcome refugees into their country. I think they understood.
As a side benefit, Alex (7) made a connection between kids at school who dislike him because of the color of his skin and how poorly Jews thought of and treated Samaritans.
All in all, it was a nice parenting win that brought an otherwise frustrating day to a good end. I need more moments like these and to learn how to cherish them when parenting is hard.