it pains me to see a homeless child. as bad as they look on the outside sometimes, it's the inside that is suffering the most. i've encountered alot of homeless children and homeless youth along the way. for most of them it's been pretty rough for a long time. you can't imagine what it's like to be 15 and all alone on the streets. you can't imagine what it's like to be that age and be hungry, cold and wondering how you're going to live and if you even deserve to live. what would you do if you were in that impossible situation? what would anyone do? on the street, homeless, these kids are forced to make choices that you or i can't imagine. they often are choosing between one thing they'll regret forever and another thing they'll regret forever. very often they're not afraid because they don't know what's out there on the streets. they're afraid because they know all too well what's out there waiting for them. many are never not scared...not even for a second.
the realities of the street and the homeless life takes its' toll on homeless children and youth very quickly. they realize they are utterly and completely alone. what had once been the simplest question to them becomes almost impossible to answer. where am i going to sleep? what am i going to eat? can i continue to survive alone out here? is there anyone in this world that cares about me? how did i end up here? will anyone ever love me again? too many questions that are much too serious and urgent for a kid in their early teens to worry about. their world, their entire world suddenly seems empty of even one person they can turn to or lean on. they see a world no decent person, let alone a kid, should ever see or be forced to face. it's a world, that despite what some would have you believe or may want to convince you of, is dark, dangerous, unforgiving, unfriendly and unrelenting. it can chew the strongest of us up and spit us out. it will devour a kid that much more quickly. it's a world of dead ends, abuse, terror and emotional pain. for some the pain is so great that the tears no longer come. it's devoid of hope, love, compassion or anything they can grab onto and gain some semblance of not drowning in the misery surrounding them. some homeless kids wish they could be the way were before. some wonder if they'll ever be able to be the way they were before again. each and every one of us end up with regrets in our lives. none of us can escape that particular fate. but for a homeless child to bear the weight of such a regret as homelessness so early in life is heartbreaking.
we can't go back when it comes to the failings we've had concerning our homeless children. but we can make up for it going forward. we have to make a decision to save our homeless children or forever lose them. their situation is so precarious that our responsibility and obligation to them are just that serious. either we save them or we let them drown....think about that. i think the one question a homeless child should not have to ask is ....can i find hope in you? do you care enough to help me? the work of helping the homeless in a street outreach program is by nature somewhat dangerous, sometimes frightening and always heartbreaking. but that's exactly why an outreach program is necessary. that is the world our homeless children live in. no child should ever have to suffer the sort of mental, physical and emotional pain that our homeless kids do...ever. we need to all come together and bring our children off the streets and out of the abandoned buildings. we need to carry them from the parks, the camps and the alleys. we need to end their life on the street and the pain, agony and fear that comes with that life. we need to restore the dignity and hope and give the love they once had and deserve to have again. we need to bring the smile they once flashed as a beautiful child and rid them of the weary frown that being homeless will etch on your face much too quickly. as long as they are alive, we need to give them hope. as long as they are breathing we need to let them know we are there for them. as long as there is light in their eyes we need to let them know we will no longer let them feel the pain of hunger or the despair of being alone.
our homeless children are beginning to receive the attention they deserved all along. congress is paying attention. our schools are paying attention. our cities are paying attention. we all need to pay attention.
in a nation that is plagued by families falling apart, community organizations deteriorating and the number of children simply falling by the wayside, we need to pay particular attention...now more than ever. we need to wake up and see our homeless and abandoned children. we must begin again, state by state, region by region, city by city, community by community,civic group by civic group, church by church to rescue our children, our future, from the grips of hunger and homelessness. we are in a race with the clock for some. we are in a race for the future with all of them. every month, every week, every day, every hour matters, because in the short time span of a day, we lose another 13 of them to the streets. they die....alone. this fact alone is compelling enough to me for all us to take action.
if you pray to God and ask him why he would allow a child to be homeless and why isn't he doing something about it, he might just answer this way.....i did do something,i put you there.
see you around town