Although it is my chosen station of the morning, I cannot listen to it for long. They’re more toned down, but still passively aggressive in putting forth their spin on the world as they want you to see it. But, they give a better likelihood of hearing news of the world, albeit peppered with progressive social mores, fueled by anti-Christian interpretations. Often I find myself slamming it off… but every morning, I turn it back on in hopes of hearing something of what is going on beyond the social life of Hollywood. I like to stay informed of where we stand globally, in this age of “as it was in the days of Noah.”
This morning, they reported on the ever increasing number of children crossing our southern borders unaccompanied by adults. Some of them as young as 7 or 8.
I tried to comprehend that all morning. I think back on my children at that age, how I tried to keep track of them. How they always had to tell me where they were going and when they got there. How I would panic if I didn't know where they were and all the time spent in locating them, to make sure they were safe.
I remembered a time when we were coming home from a 4th of July fireworks display in downtown St. Louis. The crowds were so thick that my 14 year old twins kept getting separated from us. My husband was holding our youngest on his shoulders and my daughter had looped her arm in her father’s. I was surprised when I felt someone grab my hand and even more surprised to see it was my 14 year old self-reliant son who kept losing us in the crowd.
What must it take for a 7 or 8 year old child to walk from Honduras to the Texas-Mexican border without his parents? What must have happened to him in his short life?
I get to work and pour through orders for inmates, purchased by friends and family members. The ones that really get to me are the orders placed by the Father’s for their sons. It makes me think of how we tie up our hopes and dreams in our sons and daughters. We want the most, the best, the finest of everything for them.
We strain the budget for braces. We storm the principles office on their behalf. We hunt down bullies. We pray for them, intercede for them and try and assist them and as they enter adulthood, and beyond, we help them with their children, even as we age. Our lives encircle theirs and we cannot fathom the emptiness that those who are unfortunate enough not to proceed them in death must suffer. To lose sight of them as they fall into unshielded misfortune, unable to intercede on their behalf, unable to rescue them from the pronouncement of a shattering lapse in judgment, one would endure a devastation of inconceivable proportions. All the pitfalls that we try and shield our progeny from, there are so many chances of failure available that you try so hard to avoid. The hopes, the worries, the love, the shelter, the tears, the protection and training… and then you let them go so they can put it into practice, wringing your hands raw, hoping they're watching their step.
How is it that hoards of children leave their home and travel hundreds of miles to another country, unaccompanied. The idea of it grieves me.
My youngest son stops by the house at the end of his work-day to pick up the wood from a tree that split in a storm last Friday. As I helped him load the wood into his work truck, I got to thinking about how I was always looking for him when he was a child. He would wander off from me in the mall. He’d take off to go to the store to “buy gums.” He disappeared from me at Six Flags, the Zoo, parks, theaters, church, everywhere. But I would have moved heaven and earth to find him… and bring him home.
We talked and loaded the wood onto his truck and then he drove away. He’s expecting his first child, a son, this summer. And I thought about the state of this world… a world where eight year old children find their living conditions so ruthless, so brutal, so disconcerting that they make a decision to leave everything behind in search of a better life.
I cannot wrap my head around that.