Sunday, March 30, 2014

Ada Brownell's "Imagine the Future You"

By Ada Brownell

Viewing the underbelly of society as a newspaper reporter affected me.  I can't forget the woman whose teenage son committed suicide; The high school gal I did a story about who excelled in academics as well as sports who killed herself before she could be valedictorian.
I talked with teen mothers in a high school class designed to train them in caring for their babies, with the emphasis on preventing child abuse. Only one young mom in the class of about 20 still dated the infant's father. I could detect anger against parents, former boyfriends, and even the babies.
I remember the juvenile ward at the Colorado Mental Health Institute. A psych tech told me abuse, physical and sexual, affected many of them. That might explain the obscene gesture one patient made to me when I walked into their television room.
 Serious thought disorders affected other patients. One of the kids killed his parents. The youths hee-hawed about being insane, putting on a show of disgusting faces and actions.
I stumbled into the story where a half dozen 12-year-old boys who gang raped an 8-year-old girl were in court.
Then every year, sometimes more often, I reported statistics on teen pregnancy (kids as young as 11 or 12 gave birth); abortions; and sexually transmitted diseases in our county.
As the mother of five, I wondered why we have these things happening to our children. Are we so busy earning money we neglect our own flesh and blood?
Praise the Lord my children  all serve the Lord. From their births I wanted them to grow up, as I did, knowing God loves them and has a plan for their lives—and they did.
Yet, evil forces work to destroy their faith, so thanks to things I learned in teaching teens in Christian education classes and my other biblical studies, I acquired much needed knowledge to impart to my family. They knew serving the Lord was first in my life, and my most earnest desire for them was and is that they live for Jesus.
Most important, I spent lots of time on my knees.
Yet, I knew parents don't have control. Each child has to decide whether to believe God's Word and accept salvation.
Although I've seen effects of sin as a journalist, I don't dwell on wickedness plaguing our society, and I don't advise others to do so. The Lord gives too much joy and things to rejoice about to spend too much time smelling the pig pens in life.
Our children need to know more about the joy unspeakable and full of glory that the Lord provides and the rivers of living water that refresh and strengthen our souls. Paul was in a prison cell, but he rejoiced and told us to rejoice because God is still on the throne.
The good news is our children can be righteousness, even in this wicked society. "For God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love which He loved us, even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), and raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus, that in the ages to come He might sow the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us in Christ Jesus" (Ephesians 2:4-7NKJ).
©Copyright Ada Brownell February 2014