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A legacy for our children

February 20, 2007

Even though I am not a parent, children and youth are something very dear to my heart. A few days ago I came across an article on CNN’s web site that has continued to weigh heavy on my heart and mind. The article titled Stolen kids turned into terrifying killers discusses the horrible situation around the world where children are being recruited, guided, and trained into lifestyles of crime, violence, slavery, and being physical and political shields. “There is no escape for what the United Nations and human rights groups estimate are 250,000 child soldiers today. These children, some as young as 8, become fighters, sex slaves, spies and even human shields. Sometimes their guns are taller than they are.” (Quoted from the article)

It is so easy for us in America to assume our kids are safe. Even with gangs, drugs, crime, and violence here in America most of our children and youth are predominantly safe. They don’t have to fear being kidnapped, tortured, brainwashed, or forced into lifestyles of sex or violence. My eyes have really been opened to human trafficking and international abuses toward children over the last couple years. The more I learn about these issues the more I become aware of how little I know. These children are facing lifestyles and issues I can not even fathom. They are not just making poor choices, but instead they are fighting to live.

As I hear about the plight of our young I am left to think about the legacy we are leaving our children. What future do these children who are becoming fighters, sex slaves, spies, and human shields have? Who will be there to provide for them, teach them, and give them love? It is easy to feel we have no responsibility to what is happening across the world, but we can make a difference. God asks us to make a difference. My challenge today is that I need to learn how to “live with worship being a way of life where we are stretching out our hands toward others every day”. It is easy to think about it and write about it, but how can I live it? How can I leave a different legacy for those I can impact?

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