I am disgusted.
There is an epidemic of child abuse sweeping the world. Anyone who has seen the television series “To catch a predator”, see every week how adults seek to seduce children as young as 13. And what is even more shocking, when confronted, some of these guys say that they don’t see anything wrong with it. Furthermore, the sentences passed out to these people often amount to no more than a day or two in jail, probation and a fine.
Here is another interesting statistic…the FBI receives 2000 reports of missing children in the USA, every day! Yes, you read that correctly. Two thousand children are reported missing every day in this country. Not all of them are abducted, some run away or are taken by a parent in a nasty divorce. But still, every report means a compromised child. The picture above is from the FBI’s kidnapped and missing page. Go look at it. We have a real problem.
This is a much bigger problem than most people realize. What kind of society views children as sexual objects? Or bargaining chips in a divorce? Or allows a child to be so despondent that he or she wants to run away?
I was myself the victim of a lewd act by an adult. This man, in his fifties, lured me into his car, in fornt of my house, under false pretenses of course, and grabbed me between my legs. I managed to jump out and get away, but was too ashamed to tell anyone. The experience had a profound effect on me. I was distrustful of people from that day onwards, and even today, struggle to trust people. In retrospect, I should have opened my mouth and had him go to jail to stop him from doing it again. But for an 11-year-old boy, it is pretty hard to admit he was touched there by a stranger. It was a minor incident compared to what happens to other children, so I can only imagine what effect it must have on those who get raped, beaten or otherwise violated.
The problem is that we live in a broken society. Everywhere you look, it seems as if the societal environment is constructed to incite lust. The sanctity of preserving sexual contact until after marriage is long gone. Clothing stores are filled with clothes for young girls that are sexually tempting (I know, I have a young daughter). Society seems to be pretty tolerant of these abuses. But in a society which kills its unborn children, how can we expect that same society to ascribe value to the life of a child?
Precious little is done to prevent compromising children, everything is mild or reactive.
Sure, every now and again we will get all excited and full of bluster, but then it’s too easy to just stick our heads in the sand again, and pretend as if these problems will not ever affect us, and they will just go away. Go read those statistics again. There is a 1 in 1000 chance that your child will be a victim!
Children are precious. The Father/child is the very relationship that God uses to describe those that He loves the most. It is the key part of every covenant, it is promised to us and our children. Jesus specifically said how innocent children are, and that we should be as them to inherit the Kingdom. (Now we want to make children as we are). And finally, God tells us to take care of the widows and the children, and do to the least of His kingdom as we would do to Jesus Himself.
Because I was a victim myself, I feel very passionate about this. We, as parents and grown-ups have the obligation to protect the innocence of our children. We are the front-line in this war. We are commanded by God to take care of the children.
So what can you do?
Firstly, educate your children. Make them aware of the dangers out there. Teach them the tricks that these predators use to lure them in, especially online.
Secondly, be a responsible parent, know where your children are, and make sure you know how they get to and from the places they are going.
Thirdly, be aware of where the registered sex offenders live in your area, and tell your children to steer clear of these areas.
Fourthly, teach them how to act if approached. Scream, grab and hold onto anything, even if it is just a bike. Show them how to stick their thumb in the inside corner of an assailants eye and squeeze hard. Emphasize escape.
Fifthly, have a plan for the worst case. Have pictures, videos and a good physical description at hand.
I would also highly recommend signing up for a program like Childshield to have a structured way to protect, and if worst comes to worst, recover your child.
Keep our nations children in your prayers. The so-called progressiveness of society is taking our children back to the stone age.