Thursday, 9 September 2021
Title: Save Our Children
By Dr. Tho Lye Mun
According to a report by UNICEF,  “While the world has experienced many crises, COVID-19 presents unprecedented challenges. António Guterres, Secretary General of the UN, suggests that the coronavirus pandemic is quickly turning into a “broader child rights crisis”. Media coverage indicates an increase of domestic violence and violence against children. It is abundantly clear that risk factors for violence, abuse, and neglect are on the rise for children under containment. At the same time, some COVID-19 prevention measures have abruptly cut children off from positive and supportive relationships they rely on when in distress, including at school, in the extended family, and in the community.”
World Vision defines child abuse as more than just physical trauma, it also involves psychological trauma, child trafficking, child marriages, exploitation for profit, be it child labour, sexual gratification, and in extreme cases child murder or religious sacrifice . They estimate 40.3 million adults and children are currently in forced labour, sexual slavery, and forced marriage. Alarmingly, one in four modern slaves is a child.
Children are a precious gift from God, and we are entrusted to love and care for them. Jesus said, (Matthew 19:14 ) “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.” But as Christians we must open our eyes to the fact that child abuse and trafficking is a real and present problem. We have a duty to protect those who are powerless to defend themselves. As we do that, we remember that we fight against the powers of evil that seeks to corrupt. Nevertheless, we remember the fate of those who cause the innocent to fall into sin. Matthew 18:6 “If anyone causes one of these little ones—those who believe in me—to stumble, it would be better for them to have a large millstone hung around their neck and to be drowned in the depths of the sea.”
Dear Lord, Your Word calls us to hunger and thirst for righteousness — a righteousness that leads to compassion. Lead us to this kind of faith that works to make a better world for all children.