Today I was going to write about my eye-opening class that I took last night, listing many statistics about child abuse. On our way though, my husband ended up telling me all about the horrifying news report regarding the child pornography ring that has been slowly being broken up.
And then tonight, I finally watched the video that everyone has been talking about. The one where Amanda Todd (the girl who committed suicide after extensive bullying) tells her story. Yes, I had been avoiding it. Not because I don’t care. Because these things sometimes wreck me too much. However, since this was something so current to our world, and especially our youth, I decided I needed to be brave and see what it was about.
Let me just say between those three things, I am pretty much rendered speechless. The cruelty that is within our world is devastating. It is too much for one person to bear.
A child’s innocence is so precious, to any human being with a normal level of care and compassion. I have had the words of Jesus swimming in my mind over and over.
“If anyone causes one of these little ones—those who believe in me—to stumble, it would be better for them to have a large millstone hung around their neck and to be drowned in the depths of the sea.”
Jesus love and compassion on children is verbalized in violent passion through these words. His hatred for the abuse of children, and his desire for them to experience love, joy and peace is clearly displayed.
But here is my raw and transparent fear.
Have I contributed to abuse? Bullying? Have I ever left someone feeling isolated and unappreciated?
No, I have not done anything so blatant, but if I knew Amanda Todd would she have felt love or needed by me? Would I have been paying enough attention?
Have I let my anger get out of control and yelled at my son, when he has very little understanding of what’s going on? YES! I have. And it breaks my heart to think that I have planted seeds of distrust in him at such a young age.
I’m not trying to be unrealistic, I’m just asking myself some questions. I’m horrified by the actions of others, and my inner mother wants to destroy anyone who could harm my child.
But am I as diligent to make sure that I don’t become the one that causes emotional damage? Do I have boundaries in place to make sure that I never let my anger spiral so out of control that I am led into doing something that I will seriously regret? I have been forewarned about the potential to hurt my child. Not many plan on allowing it to happen. And I am now making a plan to ensure that it doesn’t ever.
I can’t even touch on the child pornography issue, because it breaks me too deeply to think of it. But I renewed my commitment to praying protection over my son, and doing my part to make sure that he is protected while under my care.
We can’t be everything to everyone, but we need to do everything we possibly can when it comes to our own children. I am making a commitment to God, my husband, and my son that I will pursue ways to handle frustration and anger BEFORE my son can talk back to me! And I will have other moms hold me accountable to parenting with patience.
I will do everything possible to protect my kids, screen their caregivers, and ask God daily for wisdom.
I will do everything I can to not ostracize belittle, or isolate a person. We do not have to be friends with everyone, but we cannot be enemies with anyone.
But to you who are willing to listen, I say, love your enemies! Do good to those who hate you.
Jesus, oh Jesus…Protect our babies, our kids, YOUR children. May no one lay a finger on them that is not meant in love. Use us to bind up the brokenhearted and extend love to the children who are hurting.