In reflecting over 2014 at YFC London, an immediate highlight that comes to mind is when I assisted one of our Streetlight volunteers, Jessica, to deliver a mattress to a young girl through Streetlight.
When we arrived at the apartment building, we were greeted by two other street youth who confessed to being tripped on ‘purple micro dots’. They made perfect door-men in spite of what they were visualizing and we successfully carried the mattress into the building. These door-men soon became our elevator-waiters and we arrived at the apartment of the young girl who was to be the recipient of this mattress.
While Jessica attended to the girl’s immediate needs, my new found friends helped me carry the mattress into the girl’s living-room/bedroom. The look on this girl’s face shone as she entered the room and then jumped into the middle of her new bed. She just kept saying “thank-you, thank-you!”
Then Jessica and I began to make up her bed with the sheets that were also donated. As we did, one of the guys asked, “Hey Jessica. Where can a guy find a dad like yours?” These words pierced my heart as I considered the journey these kids had been on. When was the last time a father invested time in them (if ever)? When was the last time they heard the words “I love you.”? What father has ever given them a positive touch?
As I reflected more, I quickly discovered that there really isn’t a difference between the street youth we reach and the youth in a middle-class homes we work with. What would any child be like if they were suddenly on their own at the age of 15 (or younger), survived personal atrocities and now had to exist with the limited life skills they had available?
This encounter reinforced in my mind and heart the vision that youth don’t just need a house, food and clothes . . . they need unconditional loving and accepting relationships, individuals willing to journey alongside them . . . they need a family.
Thank you for partnering with us and empowering family into the lives of our London youth. Together we have seen lives impacted in 2014 and look forward to all that God has in store for 2015!
Psalm 68:6 “God places the lonely in families; he sets the prisoners free and gives them joy.”