Church camp was a highlight every summer for Nannygranne. She especially loved the “tweenagers” at Junior Camp. She loved seeing the kids emerge from their childhood cocoons to become part of a team, learning to meet and co-exist with strangers, becoming life-long spiritual friends. This week had been no exception. Her cabin held ten precious girls ages 9-12.
“Ok girls, let’s begin our quiet time,” she instructed. “Everyone in your bunks, lights out, flashlights on, let’s talk together. What’s a question on somebody’s heart that we could ask God about?”
Nannygranne waited. She knew someone would speak eventually. And, usually, the longer it took, the more sincere the words.
After a little over a minute, a shy voice pierced the quiet. “Ms. Nannygranne, why did God have to make people different colors?”
“Thank you for that question. I can’t see who it is in the dark, but I’m glad you thought of this. Someone tell me if you think different colored skins is a good thing or a bad thing.”
Again, there was brief silence. Then:
“Some people say if your skin is black or brown that it’s bad for you.”
“At school we learned that white people have been mean to everybody that’s not white and that’s what’s really bad…being white.”
“That’s not true! It’s not bad to be any color. God made us the way He wants us.”
“Maybe He did, but all the books and all of history shows that white people have always been on top and made people slaves and stole their land.”
“OK, ladies, everyone bow your heads. Let’s ask God to help us with this question.”
Nannygranne realized the question had become a tinderbox and she knew that recognizing God’s presence could diffuse the situation for now. She prayed, “Thank you Father for these girls and this place tonight. Thank you for curious and bright minds and thank You, our Creator, for loving each and every one of us so much that Jesus let Himself be killed in our place for the wrongs we do to each other. Father, help us to be wise and to love each other like you’ve loved us for so long. Help us Father with the wisdom from your word and your ways to understand each other. Help us to see Your answer and help us to compare our ideas with your answers and change our thoughts to be like Your thoughts. We know Father that following your ways brings us peace and plenty and leads us Home to You. In Jesus’ name, Amen.”
The room was quiet once again so Nannygranne began. “Ladies, this may come as a shock to you, but if you think about it, you already knew this. Can anyone guess what I’m about to say?”
“We shouldn’t argue but we should love each other,” someone ventured in light of the prayer she’d heard.
“That’s a very good thought, but not the surprise I’m thinking of.” Nannygranne hoped the mystery would capture everyone’s attention and overrule any negative feelings that might remain from earlier. “Here it is: God didn’t make people different colors.”
“What are you talking about?”
“But God created all of us and we’re different colors. I don’t get it!”
Nannygranne spoke over the chaos. “I told you that you might be shocked. But you know this. Who does the Bible say God made first?”
“Adam and Eve.” The voices chimed from the darkness with light from three or four flashlights dancing around the room.
“That’s right. In Acts 17:26 the Bible says ‘From one person, God made all nations who live on the earth.’ He was talking about Eve.”
“Then how did people get to be different colors?”
Nannygranne responded, “Well, humans are very colorful. Our skin is different colors, our hair and eyes are different colors, our bodies are all shaped differently, our voices are different from everyone else. You’ll learn about genetics in Science Class. Different genes cause differences in our appearance. Some genes are stronger than others and win more often. The genes for dark skin are stronger than the genes for light skin. The genes for being right-handed are stronger so there are more right-handed people in the world. Do you understand what I mean?”1
More silence, followed by “Not really.”
“Adam and Eve had all the genes in them when God created them. Their children, grandchildren, and following generations would have looked different from them and each other. So, God made humans with genes and that’s how we became different colors.
“We don’t know what color Adam and Eve were because to God, it wasn’t important. In fact, the Bible says in Colossians 3:11 and Galatians 3:28 that to God it’s not important whether someone has been a Jew or not, whether you were a hillbilly or a gang member, a slave or a free person, a man or a woman. What matters to Him is that we belong to Jesus.”
Nannygranne waited to see how the girls would respond.
“Well, then why do people say white or black or brown are bad? Who started the hate?”
“Well, that’s a question the Bible doesn’t answer for us. God just wants us to be different from the world and realize that it’s all about our souls, not this body that our souls are in.2 But, from the very beginning, there have been haters. Adam and Eve’s own son killed his brother because he was jealous.3 God understands how we are and He’s given us a roadmap in the Bible4, a model of His Way in Jesus5, and the Holy Spirit to help us along in living the life He wants for every one of you here and everyone out there.6 People just have to choose it for themselves.”
“Well, how did everybody get so divided?”
“Through the history of mankind, every color of people—red and yellow, black and white—has gathered with people who looked like themselves and called it different races. Then they made rules for that group’s art and food and families and called it culture. As time went by, the groups argued over whose group was better and began to fight and steal and try to get rid of each other.
“Today it’s happening again, even though America was built to be one united nation of people of different colors.7 You and I can decide we’re going to not be part of that bickering or believe what we hear when it’s not God’s truth. We can live well. We can do life God’s way. Who knows? Maybe someone will see our peaceful and helpful way of living and decide God’s Way is better after all.”
Silence again ruled the darkness, though now not seeming as dark. Nannygranne’s eyes had adjusted and she could see the light reflected softly on the faces of the girls in the room. Softly, someone started singing.
Jesus Loves the Little Children
All the Children of the World
Red and Yellow
Black and White
They are Precious in His Sight
Jesus Loves the Little Children
Of the World
1 Dominant Genes https://www.ranker.com/list/most-common-dominant…
2 Mark 8:36
4 II Timothy 2:15
5 Philippians 2:6
6 Romans 8
7 Critical Race Theory https://www.mindingthecampus.org/2021/06/07/critical-race-theory-and-common-sense/