We took the decision earlier in the week to talk to our children about the disappearance of Madeleine McCann. We do shield them from some news, but not all of the news and not all of the time. We discuss what we consider appropriate and how much detail we feel is best to give.
Last week we began by not having the news (TV/radio) on when stories of Madeleine's disappearance came on; but then we felt that our kids are deluged outside the home by pictures of Madeleine everywhere and there IS discussion amongst other children and in school too about the case. While we want our children to hold on to their childhood, we recognise that they live in the world and that they are capable of sensing the hurts and sadnesses of the world to which they are called.
In particular I recognise a desire and I would say a gifting on them both to pray for the things that are causing hurt to this world. I think they are picking up God's heart for situations. They possess compassion. On many occasions over the last three days, the younger one (aged 4) has called us to pray as a family for Maddy, such as when we sat down to breakfast this morning, and again at tea-time. His first response is to call out to God, rather than problem-solve. There are things to learn from little children.
We are crying out to God for this little girl and her family - as a family.
Lord, hear our prayer.