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God is Everywhere: What We Tell Our Daughters, Our Children…

Talking to Our daughters about the Nigerian Abduction and Evil… “In the grand scheme of things”

From the Editor:

On the night of April 14 -15, 2014, approximately 329 female students (50-plus later escaped) were kidnapped from the Government Secondary School in the town of Chibok in Borno State, Nigeria. The kidnappings were claimed by Boko Haram, an Islamic Jihadistand Takfiri terrorist organization based in northeast Nigeria, and the kidnappings have sparked a worldwide movement to have the girls released.

On 5 May, a video in which Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau claimed responsibility for the kidnappings emerged, and as is typical of this Islam-radical group, Sheku also boasted that he was acting on behalf of the Prophet Muhammad, and that it was, in fact “Allah who instructed them to take these girls and sell them as slaves”.

Chibok is primarily a Christian village and Shekau acknowledged that many of the girls seized were not Muslims: “The girls that have not accepted Islam, they are now gathered in numbers…and we treat them well, the way the Prophet Muhammad treated the infidels he seized.”

I became aware of these horrible events not by way of the media, but through my own fifteen-year-old daughter, who, with a look of panic and terror in her own eyes recanted the story as she read tweets, comments, online media commentaries and newsfeed. My heart sank in the reality of it all, and I began to wonder what, if anything, can tell our daughters, our children, that might bring them understanding about Gods role in all of it.

While this incident has and continues to receive intense media exposure and public attention, the truth is, that hundreds of girls (and boys) are taken from their homes and/or public venues across the globe every year, and many of these abductions take place within our own backyard, in America.

Actor Sylvester Stallone, center, stands with the cast of The Expendables 3, holding up banners reading, "Bring back our girls", part of a campaign calling for the release of nearly 300 abducted Nigerian schoolgirls being held by Nigerian Islamic extremist group Boko Haram, as they arrive for the screening of The Homesman at the 67th international film festival, Cannes, southern France, Sunday, May 18, 2014. ((Photo by Arthur Mola)

Actor Sylvester Stallone, center, stands with the cast of The Expendables 3, holding up banners reading, “Bring back our girls”, part of a campaign calling for the release of nearly 300 abducted Nigerian schoolgirls being held by Nigerian Islamic extremist group Boko Haram, as they arrive for the screening of The Homesman at the 67th international film festival, Cannes, southern France, Sunday, May 18, 2014. ((Photo by Arthur Mola)

 

As the mother of three girls, I cannot truly and fully know what these mothers and sisters are feeling, yet can and do sympathize with their loss of reason and understanding through these very sinister and bleak times.

It is however, responsibility to not only shed light on these injustices, but also unto a hurting world. We need to talk to our daughters and explain that Christ did, in fact warn us of severe and continued trouble and persecution (John 16:33), and yet, while God is not the instigator of evil, we live in a world of contempt where human suffering is all but guaranteed.

As thorny as this topic might prove, especially to young girl harboring fear, Angie Nauta narrates a wonderful depiction that takes (or should) place between a mother and her daughter(s), below.

Ignite.incite.inspire.

~Madeleine “Maddie” Jomolca

Editor-in-Chief- Inspired

 

by ANGIE MABRY-NAUTA with AngieMn.com

What We Tell Our Daughters about the Abducted Nigerian Girls

In a conversation with my daughters, I would tell them…

You’re probably yet too young to hear everything, but maybe you should know something. These girls aren’t much older than you are, my daughters, oh you two of elementary school age.

Maybe you should know that girls and women across this world of God’s are not all free.

There are places where girls and women are not allowed to be educated, places where girls are forced to marry as early as 12 years old, and even places where a woman can be killed if she is raped, because, clearly, it was her fault.

Perhaps this is too much for your youthful hearts to bear. I’m your mother, and each truth burdens me.

I think that you should know, though, that almost 300 girls have been abducted in Nigeria, a coastal country in northwest Africa whose shores the waters of the Gulf of Guinea keep moist.

You don’t know these girls, but they are your sisters, related to you through the image of God that shines within each person.

You need to know that the girls have names.

Thanks to Jan Edminston, we are blessed to learn some of them. I chose to pray for Rifkatu Galang by name until she is found. Would you two little ladies like to join Mama in praying? Which young ladies would you like to pray for?

You need to know that their mothers and countrywomen are beside themselves, and are leading the men in a nationwide protest.

They have been crying, shouting, and laying in the streets. “Bring back our girls!” they demand. they are boldly criticizing their government which has been slow to act. Even though Patience Jonathan, Nigerias’ First Lady, has betrayed the sisterhood of females and ordered all women to stop protesting, they keep wailing: wailing for justice, wailing for their daughters.

BringBackOurGirls-Oluchi-Orlandi-May-2014-BellaNaija.com_

You need to know that God cares.

Like a mother who understands a heart broken for her children, He {God} hears the angst of His beloveds and bends His ear towards them. Yet again Rachel laments for her children with wild and bitter weeping, and she refuses solace because they are gone (Jeremiah 31: 15).

Does this confuse you, my Loves? It is a strange combination that God cares and hears the cries of Her children, and still this terror has happened. Are your heads spinning, trying to put the puzzle pieces into a picture you can behold, like many people’s are? Do you want to know what God is doing while these girls are in the hands of violent men, and their mothers beg for their return?

So do I. As far as I can tell, so does everyone else.

These words from Frederick Buechner in The Magnificent Defeat help me.

“Jesus is apt to come, into the very midst of life at its most real and inescapable moments. Not in a blaze of unearthly light, not in the midst of a sermon, not in the throes of some kind of religious daydream, but…at supper time, or walking along a road. . . . He never approached from on high, but always in the midst, in the midst of people, in the midst of real life and the questions that real life asks”.

Our Lord Jesus never promised us that life would be without bad times and struggles. But, he did promise us that he’d be with us. Always. And even though we don’t understand why terrible things happen in this lifetime, especially to young and innocent girls, God’s presence with us is not “nothing”… As a matter of fact, in the grand scheme of things, it is everything.

God is there to hold us when we cry; so, let it out. He is there to receive our angry rails; so, let it fly. He is there to rejoice with us when the lost and taken return home; so let it rise to the sky. He is there to sob with us when grief crushes us; so, let it flow… And He is there to welcome us when death ushers us into His arms: so, let yourself exhale.

You need to know that although I didn’t think I could cherish you two more, somehow I do after hearing about these Nigerian girls who were abducted.

Tomorrow, when I take y’all to school, I will watch each step you take in the crosswalk, on the school sidewalk, and into the school building, and thank God that I was able to watch y’all take them.

When I pick y’all up from school, and y’all run towards me, your arms stretched wide, your eyes wide open, and your sweet lips joyfully pronouncing, “Mama!” I will embrace y’all with greater purpose, spin y’all around mindful of the moment, and breathe in your soiled-from-play scent as to glue it into my nostrils forever.

And when hunger, emotion, and exhaustion overtake y’all, when tears stream and tempers flare like they are bound to do, and when my patience grows thin, you need to know that we will remember. Y’all will remember your Nigerian sisters, abducted from all that they know. I will remember my sisters, their mothers, desperate for their daughters. And together we will join our voices with theirs, beseeching God for these treasured girls’ return.

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