Thursday, September 30, 2004

My precious boys

I want to share with you all one of the most touching things that I do. You all know that I visit the prisons once a week and I wank to share with you a little more in depth about this experience. These boys range in age from 10-18 most of them are around 15 or 16. There are usually around 200 boys in the prison at one time but it seems to go in shift with several kids coming or going at the same time. The boys are divided into 3 sections; the eighteens, the MS's, and everyone else. The 18's and the MS's are two rival gangs and if they were together they would kill each other and/or recruite the other boys into their gangs for this reason the each have seperate sections of the jail. There are about 25 boys in each of the gang sections and then everyone else is in the main section of the jail. Each week I am touched by the number of boys that come up and ask Eriberto (the man I go with) to call their mom's and ask them to come visit them. This never ceases to bring tears to my eyes. I can't imagine my child ever having to ask a virtual stranger to call me up and beg me to go visit my son. These boys are literally starving for attention. We bring them all together for a devotional each week and they clamber to sit next to us. They won't "purposely" reach out to you, I think their need is just to overwhelming for them to acknowledge, but they will find reasons to bump into you or they smash inbetween you and the person next to you so that they have some contact, some affection. I'm getting to know a few of the boys fairly well and a couple of them will hug me goodbye. Sitting and talking to a group of them is filled with taps coming from all sides and not stop talking just so that I will give them each my attention. Most of them have had incredibly difficult lives and most of them have no one that comes to visit them. One of my favorite boys starting opening up to me last week and was telling me that he had been in and out of this prison his whole life, a total of 4 times, for doing drugs. He started by sniffing glue and then just worked his way up as the effects stopped being enough to help him cope with the pain in his life. He's lived on the streets or in this prison since before he was able to fend for himself. Boys like this just steal my heart. I can't help but wonder what these sweet, loving boys could have been if they'd been born to a family that loved them. Instead they're sitting in jail wondering if anyone will ever love them and if they will ever be able to overcome the things they've done in the past. I'll ask them if they are going to do drugs or be in a gang or whatever problem it is we're discussing, when they get out of prison and they are so honest. They look at me with fear and pain in their eyes and they say that they don't know. They tell me how hard it is not to. These boys rarely sit still, they are fidgety and have a hard time focusing, but when we pray I've never seen anyone pray more fervently. They want to believe in God. They want to believe they're worth being saved. They want to think that maybe God can love them. Of all the things I'm doing here in Honduras, I feel that this is the most important. This is the place where I share the love God has given me directly with kids who want it so badly. Please pray for these boys and please pray for me as I look for the right ways to share with them.

5 comments:

crittermer said...

Awwwwhhh, Amber! This makes me want to cry! You're doing great work! Keep it up! I pray for you all the time, and I'm glad you have a blog now, so I can know even more ways to pray for you. Love you!

ann said...

Awh! You made me cry! You are doing such marvelous work there, Amber. I love you and will be praying for you and those boys!!!!

Shannon said...

Amber, I love you so much. These stories touch my heart. You are always in my prayers and thoughts, and now these boys are too.

shasta said...

hey sis,
you truly are amazing to me. i brag and brag about you all the time. i just read all of the blog entries of yours and i don't know anyone with such a big heart and willingness to help other people. i am so so so so proud of you and your outstanding efforts to make this world a better place. i used to tease you about being afraid of things, and say that "oh my ambie would never do something like that" you have proved me wrong over and over again sis. you are the most brave lady that i have ever known and i respect you and i love you with all of my heart. i wish you the world sister. you deserve the moon and the stars and i wish i could wrap them up and send them to you, although you would probably tell me to hang them right back up because your kids want to see them. again, you truly are an amazing human being and i am proud as i could be of you. thank you for being there for me too. i love you i love you i love you. hugs and kisses.
shasta

crittermer said...

Encore Amber, encore!