Isaiah 40: 8: The grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of our God endures forever.
During the sixties my life took many turns. I was a high school student, then a graduate with a great job as a telephone operator. Then I was a bride, and even a mom, twice, during that decade. I saw a husband go off to war and thankfully return again safely.
The music from that decade ran different courses too. Good old rock n’ roll, the Beatles, and anti-war songs. But earlier in that decade folk music was a big thing. I loved folk music, and a woman and two men, called, Peter, Paul and Mary, were one of my favorite groups. They had many great songs, Lemon Tree, Puff the Magic Dragon, which was not about pot. And one called Where Have All the Flowers Gone?
Today as I was praying about writing my column, those words, “Where have all the flowers gone,” kept coming to me. I won’t explain the song to you, but take a listen some time if you want. The truth is the meaning that came across to me was all the innocence of the world I grew up in has disappeared. (Not quite the message of the song).
When I went out to play, I didn’t worry about the color of my playmates skin. I knew if my pal had pigtails, it was a girl, and never stopped to see if she identified as something else. As a matter of fact, I wouldn’t have had any thoughts even close to that sort of thing. We were taught to pledge to our flag and say the Lord’s prayer in school. In those early school days life was a wholesome adventure. You’ve heard a lot of us say that we played outside till the streetlights came on. It was true. There were no devices to use that kept us inside. We were taught to respect authority; teachers, police officers and our elders, especially our parents and grandparents.
So, here is my point. I believe kids are kids. What then is the reason the kids today are having sex and doing drugs while kids in my time, at the same age, were playing ‘kick the can’ and jumping rope?
There are still a lot of good parents out there. I see them in my church every week. I also see good parents who don’t attend church, but they do attend to their children. Devises have become baby sitters. It started with tv and cartoons on Saturday morning. Pretty harmless way to keep the kids safe while mommy and daddy caught a little extra shut-eye. But, cartoons then were funny and light, today they are full of violence and killing and gore. (Please don’t write to tell me that the roadrunner and the coyote were violent. Kids knew that stuff was fake). Many television programs today are more about pushing an agenda rather than trying to entertain. We watch tv to escape the daily grind, yet we have to sit through so and so’s rights being violated, all the while watching the actors adorned in their Covid masks. I’ve dropped those shows from my playlist.
So, as I look around in this world today, I have to wonder, where have all the flowers gone? The color, the joy, the laughter, the love, the sharing and giving and just being there for others, where have they gone? Perhaps they left our lives along with God and prayer in our school system and in our hearts? Then the song says, “when will they ever learn, when will they ever learn?” Until next time!