Most of us see pictures floating around on Facebook posted of missing children. As part of the search effort, those pictures are typically accompanied with a request to help get the word out by sharing the post. My heart aches everytime I see some beautiful face that has been separated from their loved ones. Like most, I share the photo on my timeline, say a quick prayer and then move on to another interest.
On last Saturday, I received the news that my nephew had been missing for well over 24 hours since the Friday before. My heart felt like it stopped and I froze in a state of shock. It is one thing to pass on someone else’s photo that I don’t know, but it is altogether different when it hits so close to home. All sorts of thoughts were running through my mind of the awful things that cruel people do to little children. I love my nephew just as much as I love my own children. I have seen him grow from a tiny baby to a handsome young man who is now 14 years old and he’s missing. Apparently, he had gotten into some trouble with his parents due to disobedience and took off. By the grace of God we received the news that he was found. His parents picked him up and we all cried and were so relieved that he was okay.
Below you will read his own account of what he experienced while wandering the streets at night all alone. It is my hope that you will share his experience with your kids as a teaching tool to keep them safe from harm’s way. I shared this experience with my kids which also opened the door to a broader discussion about what they experience as kids and pre-teens. I felt it important for them to understand that I have had the same thoughts, feelings and experiences when I was their age. I know all to well what it is like to want to experience life contrary to what I was taught and how I was raised. At the end of the our conversation, I left them with a few thoughts: First and foremost, they are loved no matter what; Secondly, to take full responsiblity of their actions and consequences thereof; Lastly, they have to understand how the consquences of their actions effect their loved ones. I would love to hear your thoughts!!!
Blessings and Inspiration,
Shannon Ayers Speaks
In his own words:
I will like to thank everyone for your prayers and support. I apologize for the pain I have caused you to endure for the past few days, please accept my humble,sincere apologies I am thankful to GOD that I was kept safe while I was walking the streets. Here is a timeline of what I was doing while I was out.
I walked to Tutt Middle School, then to a gas …station, next i walked to my old neighborhood in Harrisburg, which was not the safest place to be at night, next while walking to University Hospital I declined a ride from a stranger, next I walked from University Hospital to MCG Hospital and watched some workers up until i heard the birds next I walked back to Harrisburg and talked to my old neighbors next while I was trying to find my siblings school I was asked by a man who was blowing leaves, what I was doing and he told me to be safe, since i could not find my siblings school I decided to walk to the library while at the library i dozed off while Reading a book once I woke up I walked back to Harrisburg and to my old high school where I saw a family friend next I went to a barbershop with my old neighbors after I left there I stayed at my old neighbor’s house until my parents came and picked me up. All together I walked for a total of 15+ miles. The whole time while I was out I was thinking about what I had done wrong when I was at home.
What I have learned from this experience is that I have put my family and family friends through a lot of unnecessary pain and suffering. I also realize that I have a family that cares about me and who also loves me and that I need to appreciate what they do for me and how they bring me up. I learned that I need to face my problems instead of trying to ignore them.