The Color of Water

In the Color of Water, why does Ruth tell James, "God is the color of water?" Why does James accept this? Why does Richie not accept this?

I am having a hard time with these questions considering I don't have my book with me right now, so any help I can get will be really helpful. Please DO NOT WRITE NEGATIVE OR RUDE COMMENTS, I WOULD REALLY APPRECIATE IT IF YOU DO NOT DO THAT.

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"When James asks his mother whether God is black or white, he is a boy living in a predominantly black community with a mother who looks white, and is simply expressing his personal confusion about race. To add to the confusion, however, his mother simply responds that she is "light-skinned". When his mother explains that God doesn't have a color, and that God is "the color of water", the image converges questions of racial and religious division into an essence that is clear and universally spiritual - in other words, "human". Check out this excerpt at the GradeSaver site in the source-link below!"



Reverend Owen was the minister of the church Ruth and her husband had founded while James was growing up, and he recalls Richie, his older brother, challenging the minister about the color of Jesus. When Reverend Owen failed to give him an adequate response, Richie insisted Jesus was gray, and stopped attending Sunday School after that.

Richie resented the portrayal of Jesus as a wite man, and he never accepted or got over it. He simply rejected the church because he couldn't get the answers he desired.