Marian Wright Edelman: The Rent We Pay For Living and the Biggest Problem American Children Face

“I was taught that the world had a lot of problems; that I could struggle and change them; that intellectual and material gifts brought the privilege and responsibility of sharing with others less fortunate; and that service is the rent each of us pays for living — the very purpose of life and not something you do in your spare time or after you have reached your personal goals.”

“What’s wrong with our children? Adults telling children to be honest while lying and cheating. Adults telling children to not be violent while marketing and glorifying violence… I believe that adult hypocrisy is the biggest problem children face in America.”

― Marian Wright Edelman

The first quote was in my Google+ feed today thanks to a dear friend who works with children.  I forwarded it on to the leaders of our Mission Team here at First Presbyterian and to all our ministry and program staff.  For me, it comes closest to defining a missional life as anything I have seen.

The second quote is prophetic in its assessment and ever-timeliness.  I hope to God for a day when it’s outdated because we, American adults, will have made it so by our ethical and moral commitments, our spiritual and political priorities, and by shining lights on places where our systems have absorbed injustice instead of upending it.


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