A few weeks ago I wrote a blog post about some boys in my neighborhood that I’ve been praying for and how I’ve been praying for Christ to invade their lives, for them to see the value in a relationship with Christ and how their lives can change, it was confirmed to me this week, that those prayers need to continue. On Tuesday night I was sitting outside with the some of the kids, and they were telling me all the things that happened while I was gone, who climbed the fence and opened the gate, they all brought out their post cards so I could tell them about the pictures on the front, and they wanted to know everything about my trip home (side note: someday when someone I know wins the lottery, I want to take all the kids to Kansas for vacation, OR does anyone own a private jet ha-ha!). I was so excited to tell them about my niece and nephew, spending time with my brothers, watching my mom get married, snuggling baby bunnies on a farm and all the other fun things I did in Kansas, when a group of older boys walked up, and all of a sudden one of my sweet girls said, “Man I wish my brother wouldn’t do that anymore, he’s going to die soon…”
I looked up to see some of my favorite boys and I immediately knew what she was talking about my heart broke into a thousand pieces and I immediately wanted to make all of her hurt go away. I wanted to yank her brother out of the group by his ears and tell him what his dear sister said, I wanted to remind him of the world that’s waiting for him, and the boy he is when he’s shooting hoops in my backyard. She then ended the sentence with… “Ms. Colleen we should pray for him.” We did just that right there together, and then I told her that I actually pray for her brother everyday and in my prayer journal I write a little prayer for protection for these boys. She told me she was going to begin to pray for her brother too, and asked if I would pray with her sometimes.
Not 2o minutes later, I was driving one of the kids home, and we were talking about people joining gangs and selling drugs and getting into trouble and how he didn’t want to join a gang or sell drugs, but he has been asked to hold them before. When all of a sudden out of his mouth came…”Ms. Colleen, I hope my dad stops selling soon, otherwise he’s going to die soon…” I just looked at him and asked him why he thought that…”Everyone who deals drugs eventually dies, right?” I looked at him holding back the tears and told him I would start to pray for his dad and that we could also pray for his protection. After I dropped my sweet boy off, I began to pray not just for these sweet kids family members but for them, for the influences they have in their lives, for the ideas that they have about the streets, and about the fears they have of losing their loved ones.
The next day both of these sweet kids came over after school and asked me if I remembered to pray for their loved ones that day, and I assured them I did and both of them asked if we could pray together. This makes me happy for so many reasons, it means they are really understanding that when I remind them 10000 times a week, that prayer actually works they are listening, and that they might actually be feeling and seeing God work in their lives.
I am continuing to pray for these boys in our neighborhood who feel trapped… that Christ would invade their lives, that they would see the potential they have in front of them, that there is more to life than these streets. I pray that God sends them positive male role models into their lives. I also continue to pray for the kids who have to witness their loved ones abandoning their families for the streets, who worry about death at such early ages (some even experiencing it) and for them to know they have a safe and loving “home” to run to whenever they need it.