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Christian Living / Gaye Clark

When God Sends Your White Daughter a Black

August 8, 2016

For yearsI prayed for a young man I had yet to meet: my daughters husband. I asked the Lord to make
him godly, kind, a great dad, and a good provider. I was proud of a wish list void of unrealistic
expectations. After all, I knew not to ask for a college football quarterback who loved puppies, majored in
nuclear rocket science, and wanted to take his expertise to the mission field. I was an open-minded mom.
But God called my bluff.
This white, 53-year-old mother hadnt counted on God sending an African American with dreads named
Glenn came to Christ in college and served him passionately. He worked while attending classes and
volunteered at church in an after-school program for urban kids. He graduated and found a job as an
application developer for Blue Cross and Blue Shield. I noticed he opened doors for my daughter, Anna,
even at the grocery store.
Godly. Kind. Well on his way to being a great dad and a good provider. I could only smile at Gods plan
and asked his forgiveness for my presumptions. Still, my impressive wish list for Annas husband paled in
comparison to her own: He loves Jesus, Mom. Thats it. Thats my wish list. Jesuslover. Then a grin
came across her face. Its really awesome hes also cute, right? Anna took a deep breath and with a
sparkle in her eyesasked:So, Mom, what do you think?

It wasnt long ago that interracial marriageparticularly a black man like Glenn marrying a white girl like
Annawas considered the ultimate taboo in American white society. (In fact, it wasillegal in 16 states until
1967, when theSupreme Courtruled inLoving v. Virginiathat race-based restrictionsviolated the
ConstitutionsEqual Protection Clause. Hence the film releasing this fall,Loving.)Though I never
sharedthis prejudice, I neverexpected the issue toenter my life.
To the parentlike me whonever envisioned herdaughter in an interracial marriage, here are eight things
to remember when your white daughter brings a black man home for dinner.

1. Remember your theology.

All ethnicities are made in the image of God, have one ancestor,and can trace their roots to the same
parents, Adam and Eve.
As you pray for your daughter to choose well, pray for your eyes to see clearly, too. Glenn moved from
being a black man to beloved son when I saw his true identity as an image bearer of God, a brother in
Christ, and a fellow heir to Gods promises.

2. Remember to rejoice in all things.

If your daughter has chosen a man whos in Christ, and assuming there are no serious objections to their
union, loving her well means not only permitting an interracial marriage but also celebrating it. My
daughters question, What do you think? needed more than a tolerant shoulder shrug. She needed to
know I loved Glenntoo. Im deeply grateful my daughter chose this particular man, and I try to tell him

3. Remember no Christian marriage is promised a trial-free life.

One woman in church looked over at Anna and Glenn and gingerly asked, Are they . . .dating?
Engaged! I grinned and winked at them.

She gave a pained smile, and then sighed and shook her head. Its just . . . their future children. They
have no idea whats ahead of them!
I nodded. When Jim and I were married, we had no idea what was ahead of us either. I stopped believing
the lie we could control our trials years ago.
John Piper said it well:
Christ does not call us to a prudent life, but to a God-centered, Christ-exalting, justice-advancing,
counter-cultural, risk-taking life of love and courage. Will it be harder to be married to another race,
and will it be harder for the kids? Maybe. Maybe not. But since when is that the way a Christian
thinks? Life is hard. And the more you love, the harder it gets.

4. Remember to be patient with family members.

Calling Uncle Fred a bigot because he doesnt want your daughter in an interracial marriage
dehumanizes him and doesnt help your daughter either. Lovingly bear with othersfears, concerns, and
objections while firmly supporting your daughter and son-in-law. Dont cut naysayers off if they arent
undermining the marriage. Pray for them.

5. Remember your daughters ultimate loyalty is not toyou oryour family, but
to the Lord.
Several people asked Anna and Glenn,Which world will you live inblack or white? But its not his
world, her world, or even our world.
Interracial marriage in Christ is not about the joining of two races and cultures into one. Its notabout a
new ethnic heritage. Itsabout unwavering allegiance to the one true God and all he may require of the
couple as soldiers of Jesus. After all, Christians are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a
people for his own possession, that youmay proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of
darkness into his marvelous light (1 Pet. 2:9).

6. Remember the grooms family.

Before the weddingI reached out to Glenns mom, Felicia. As we sat and talked about our children, we
realized we have similar hopes and dreams for them. As we share a common bond, Im hopeful Felicia
can become a friend.
How might Christ be honored if such relationshipswere being built alongside every interracial marriage?

7. Remember heavens demographics.

As Anna and Glenn stood before our pastor and joined their two lives into one, I realized their union was
a foretaste of a glory yet to come:After this I looked, and behold, a great multitude that no one could

number, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and
before the Lamb, clothed in white robes(Rev. 7:9).

8. Remember to die to your expectations.

As a nervous young man sat inmy living room, I handed him the ring my deceased husband gave me the
day he asked me to marry him. With a lump in my throat, I swallowed hard and said, Glenn, have a
jeweler put it in a new setting and make it your own. Its precious to me, but you and Anna are of far
greater value than that.
Far greater value indeed.
Parents, teach your daughters early to choose well. Pray hard and often. Then trust her judgment to the
sovereignty of God, and rejoice with her in the goodness of God.

Gaye Clark works as a cardiac nurse Augusta, Georgia, and as a parttime correspondent for WORLD magazine in
the area of sex trafficking. She also volunteers with iCare, a local faith-based organization that provides assistance
to trafficked victims. She writes in her free time. She has two adult children, Anna and Nathan. You can follow her
on Twitter.

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