Wanting to 'get away' from it all. To have peace, and leave my responsibilities behind just for a little while.
I did not have these thoughts at 10 years old.
I was not completely serious.
And my 'problems' did not invade every part of my existence.
The beautiful, sassy, hurting, bitter, protective, smart little girl who told me this does.
Mikayla is 10 years old. She has three brothers, a 5 year old (Ethan), and twin brothers who are older.
The first time I talked to Mikayla was a few weeks ago at Bible Club, she was over in the corner crying. After about an hour of talking to all of the parties involved I learned that her little brother had been chased, hit and kicked by some older boys. She tried to protect him, and was extremely upset and bitter. I worked out the situation the best I could, but could see the pain and hurt in her young face. I have been praying for her ever since, and trying to connect with her.
This week we started talking because she was in timeout, and after we were done I asked her if she had any questions. After a long pause she said; "Why do all of the verses have black people in them?"
This led to a discussion about skin color, classes, and the truth that God created ALL men (and women, and children) equal. Mikayla is very aware of the difference between black people, and white people, and Mexicans.
In her words; "White people are rich, and black people are poor."
At this point I asked her what made people poor, and she shared that her family was poor because they didn't have toys or a TV.
I asked her if she wanted to be something different, she said yes, a bird so she could fly away from all of her problems. Her problems being that her dad works all of the time, and her mom is never home. This makes Mikayla mad, that her mom doesn't take care of her, and leaves her with her brothers who are mean.
At this point I asked her where she thought animals went when they died, she said the ground. I asked her the same question about people, and she said that they would go in the ground too. I explained to her that we are different than the animals, that we have a spirit and a soul, and that we will go somewhere when we die, not just disappear.
I went through the whole gospel story, explaining things as I went. Mikayla asked questions that made me think she had never heard it before. When I was done I asked her if she knew for sure where she was going when she died, she said; "Heaven.....I think." To which I replied, Are you sure? 100% sure?
At this she got a little upset; "I've tried everything! I don't know for sure! I've accepted Jesus, and gone to church, and prayed, but I don't know."
I went through the evangecube with her, again she acted like she didn't know any of it, and at the end I explained that the only way to know for sure that you would go to heaven is to ask Jesus to be the boss of your life and follow Him for the rest of your life.
She said that she had done all of that, admit believe choose, she looked me in the eye and said that she knew 100% for sure that she was going to heaven when she died.
I prayed with her, and saw a new softness in her face.
Part of me is really encouraged by this, her openness and willingness to share personal details with me. And another part of me wonders if it is enough. If she really knows what, or Who is going to save her, and if it will change her life.
If it will be enough to save her from the hopelessness, violence, prejudice, and bitterness that she has been born into.
This breaks my heart, and gives me an urgency to speak into her life, if there is ANY way that I can make a difference I will.
When I look into her brown eyes and see myself, scared, hurting, hungry for love, I know that I have to do something. I have to do everything I can to show her Christ, the only one who can save her.