Last week we promised to answer the question, "Why a men's conference center?" How to answer that question was a problem. But God sent the answer in the story of a girl we just took to spend the holiday school break at Promise Springs Rescue Center. The above photo is of her young brother. We will not share her name, but we will share her story.
As she spoke with the social worker who went out to her home she said, "I got with child with a friend, who is also my neighbor. I gave in to him not knowing the consequences. I didn't know more about sex, and I got a child with a boy who is still young and in school." When her family realized that she was pregnant she was forced to go to the boy's home as a wife. She said she stayed in the boy's home until she delivered. The boy continued to have sex with her although she felt bad about the situation of being married at a younger age. She also felt bad seeing the boy going to school as she was left at home. She eventually left the boy's home.
Your initial response may be anger towards this young man. It was our initial response also until we learned more about the culture. In the traditional Kenyan culture, this young boy will become a "man" when he turns 13 years old. He will go through a "rite of passage" ceremony at age 13. Essentially young men are circumcised at this age and when they are healed from the procedure, they move out of their parent's home into a home built on their parent's property and are considered men. This is a cultural ceremony, but not all parents prepare these boys for their future. The boys consider themselves "men" and turn to the "men" on the street as their guide as most of them do not have fathers who live in the home. They may never have been told about the consequences of sex at a young age or the responsibilities of fatherhood. They do not have the picture or the example of a Christlike home and family. That is where the Men's Conference center comes into play. It will be a place, away from the rescue center, where young men can go to learn computer skills but also to be taught by Christian men the proper way to view and interact with girls. They will be taught about how early parenthood can impact their lives and the importance of being good husbands and fathers.
If we don't approach the huge epidemic of teenage pregnancy from both sides, we are failing in what God calls us to do. We cannot do this, but God can through prayer and the sharing of His word. He just needs us to throw the pebble in the pond that will cause the ripple effect and pray that the boys teach each other as we have seen the girls do.
If, through this effort, one boy turns into a father who loves his wife and children, and becomes a role model for other young men, then the effort will be well worth it.
Romans 12:2 "Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect?
As you prepare for Thanksgiving, remember these young men and women in prayer so that they, too, can enjoy a loving and whole family in their futures.
What does your donation do?
- Give teenage mothers the opportunity to finish their education while learning the Word of God and how to be mothers
- Give babies a safe place in which to grow
- Remove vulnerable girls from dangerous conditions
- Sustain a farm which provides jobs and feeds the girls and babies
- Share the gospel in the local community
100% of your donation funds the mission.
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