Tuesday, February 14, 2012

There’s always a siren singing you to shipwreck

I didn't know what to think. Reading the words, I felt the blood drain from my head. I never intended my words about the street in this street kid to be quite so scarily prophetic, but events this week served to underline just how clouded and confused these boys’ thoughts can be - and how fragile their peace.

E had run away after lunch. It was five in the afternoon of my day off when I read the email and, needless to say, I got straight into the car and drove like a madman into town, putting various calls into my friends T&B (who now work closely with some of the kids in the centre of the city) and breaking every speed limit as I went. I wasn’t going to let E go, even if not everyone in the team seemed to share the same urgency to pull this particular stray back into the fold. With the help of my friends he was found, and - gratefully - had not yet had the chance to take drugs, as so often is the motivation of most runaways. The reason he gave me, as I looked at him inquisitively? I wanted to see my friend Caio. I wanted to see if he was OK.

That was enough reason for me. In the car home, I asked him whether he thought about the consequences of leaving his brothers behind. His..dad...behind (more on that one shortly). Where would he sleep? Would he just take up where he left off nine long months ago? He hadn’t. And it wouldn’t surprise me if he went through the same thought process when he left home almost two years ago.

We try hard to establish for each of the boys a context of security, love and discipline in a structure not unlike a home, rather than an institution, but even that is sometimes not enough. Like a tentative ceasefire in a long-running war, why do I consistently fail to see every day - no, every moment - with these kids in my charge as a moment of grace?


2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Thanks to not let him go easily...I have a Scripture for you, that I happen to be listening this morning, how interesting...(Acts 27 verse 22)... And now, Luke, I urge you to take heart, for there will be no loss of life(soul) among you, but only of the ship...Fernanda.From Him to you.

Katherine said...

that's an awesome verse! I'm constantly amazed at the ways our Father finds to speak to us and say exactly what we need to hear.

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