But from everlasting to everlasting the Lord's love is with those who fear him, and his righteousness with their children's children. Psalm 103:16-18
I love farm magazines, and I take several of them. There is always an ongoing debate about "warehousing animals." Some people are militant that animals must be raised in as natural an environment as possible to be as healthy as possible, and they have good points. It's a proven fact that eggs from a free range chicken has more vitamins, and certainly, if you have ever cracked open a store bought egg in the same bowl as a free ranged egg, you can SEE the difference. Chickens who are housed in cramped environments will tend to pick on each other, and any animal who has a defect, or a wound, will soon be pecked to death by the other chickens in the cage.
In a recent magazine, I read a letter from a lady who was incensed over rabbits also being raised in cages. It was all very interesting....
Recently, I've wondered if that shouldn't be carried over to children?
My children go to a homeschool co op for a couple of hours on Thursday at a large church near us. This church also runs a day care center that is in full swing on Thursdays. They are at one end, and we are at the other, but we overlap a small bit in the middle. I take care of the toddlers during the second hour, which coincides with lunch time for this day care. As I walk to my class, I can hear the activity, and usually I can hear the voice of someone speaking - well, I will be honest - yelling at the kids. Usually, it's "sit down!!" I remember one day wondering how the kids eat without a knot in their stomachs. It certainly doesn't sound relaxing in there.
A couple of weeks ago, in addition to co op, my oldest girls, Miss S and Mary Susannah, began voice lessons in this same church, and Angel-Leah is taking piano from the same man. We get there late in the afternoon, just as the day care is winding down for the day, and the children are being picked up.
Again, I hear much confusion and some yelling as I walk to the library to wait while the girls take their lessons. Last week, a door was open, and I glanced into the room. It was full of children who looked about four years old. A tv was blaring, the children were jumping and dancing and wiggling, like little children will do, and it was very noisy. A tired looking woman was sitting in a chair against the wall, her hands folded between her knees, her shoulders slumped, no smile on her face as all the activity went on around her. As I passed the room, the thought came into my mind - "warehoused children."
I thought how children should be raised naturally. At home. Their own home, with at least one parent always there. A bright sunny yard to play in. A puppy. No stress, just home in their own natural environment. No TV is a big plus. No violent video games. Lots of healthy food and lots of space to let their imaginations flow.
I woke up this morning, and my thoughts went to the school shooting yesterday, where several little children lost their lives. I was in the car coming home from the grocery store when I heard about it on the radio. My first thought was that I needed to go get Miss S, who is the age of the children who were killed. But right now, Miss S is not fully mine, and until she is adopted, she has to attend public school. I am hoping next month that will happen, and that very day I will check Miss S out of public school and bring her home.
But as I thought about the children this morning, I pictured how terrified they must have been. I pictured them huddled against the wall as that young man picked them off, one by one. The horror of it. No mommy or daddy there to throw their own body over them to protect them.
Unnatural environments. Did this young man grow up in a warehouse/day care? What games did he play as a child? What was his life like? I don't know any details right now. We don't have a TV, the local paper won't deliver to our rural address, I don't listen to the radio except in the car, and I rarely check the news on the internet, although I will probably do that to read more about this story.
These things are increasing, and I am sure many things are to blame. Off the top of my head, I would say that so many children are not raised and nurtured the way they were intended to be raised and nurtured - they spend most of their lives in day care centers and then public schools, and when they are home, instead of fresh air and sunshine, they play violent video games and watch movies with all kinds of stuff in them. And they grow up damaged.
There is a better way...