"I don't feel anything."
When my phone rings with an unknown number I always brace myself.
Did someone get hit by a car? Did two kids get in a fight? How big is the cut and who needs to go to the hospital?A few days ago my phone rang. On the other end I heard chaos and the kids asking me to come quickly. Pieces of the story came out, an angry teenager, a broken glass bottle resulting in another homeless man with deep cuts on his face. The ambulance and the police got there first and the next morning I went to the police station to visit the angry and hurting teenager.
He is a gentle kid. Soft spoken and with so much hurt wrapped up and hidden deep inside of him. But the drugs and alcohol are consuming him and there are times he loses himself. As I talked to him through the bars all I could tell him was that he was so loved. It hurts to see our kids behind bars and not know how to help. I wrote my number on his arm and told him to call me if he got out, otherwise I would be back that night.
A few hours later he called me. He was out and waiting for me so we could talk. I found him a little while later barefoot and exhausted. He opened up about his fears and how he wants to change but it’s so hard.
The Holy Spirit whispered into my heart. “Talk to him about repentance.” I was confused. This kid is hurting and he knows he is in the wrong. He just got out of jail. I don’t want to condemn or judge him. Are you sure God?
And so I gently talked to this little brother of mine about how we are sinners in need of grace. How we must repent of our sins and God is faithful and just to forgive us and cleanse us. I told him how much God loved him. I asked him if he wanted to pray and ask for forgiveness and his eyes welled up with tears and he slowly shook his head. “No hermanita Lily. I don’t feel anything.” He said slowly. I didn’t push it but it opened my eyes.
So many of our kids are overwhelmed by guilt and feel they are too broken, too bad. They are learning the concept that they are loved, but forgiven? That’s just too much. It’s heavy isn’t it? Would you pray that God would move in the lives of these kids and they would understand the mercy, grace and forgiveness found only in Jesus. Pray that our team would be able to clearly share the gospel with the kids. The hope that is only found in Jesus Christ.