I get a flash of a second with young women.
Thirty to forty-five minutes seems like a trivial moment in the grand scheme of their entire lives, especially when I know well what I am up against.
I get a fleeting minute to tell the ones who do not believe it that they are valuable, worthy, loved, and beautiful.
I get a split second to share truths with them that some have never heard in their lives...
You are important. You matter. There is a great purpose for your life. Your DNA was painted by the hand of the God of the universe. You are forgivable, lovable, beautiful, and worthy. Your body is a sacred place.
And my heart continues to give into heaviness because I watch this world which surrounds young women closely and I know I get a flash of a second and Miley Cyrus gets hours and hours with them. Interview after topless interview, Instagram photo after inappropriate song.
I get this fleeting moment and Demi Lovato gets weeks. They hear from these women day after day - women who post photos of their naked bodies as objects on Instagram to be liked, praised, or ridiculed. The young women I speak to are taught on a daily basis that nothing is sacred - sex is a game - our bodies are objects for all to see.
The half hour God allows anyone to share a message of true identity and hope with them can feel like nothing.
It challenges every bone in my body and feels like just a fraction of what could make a difference until I get that one message, that one email that reminds me of what I know well...the reality of what one half hour can do for the life of anyone who walks the earth...
She tells me, this young woman, that in the 30 minutes that God's truth of her identity fell upon her ears...her life was changed profoundly. She vulnerably opens her heart to tell me this half hour was the first time she has ever heard that she matters. It was the first day in a very long time she did not go home and harm herself because of this profound revelation that resonated in her heart. She tells me that this 30 minutes saved her life.
And God whispers it to me again and again...
Do not ever underestimate that flash of a second.
Because that flash of a second is a flash of light, and in the darkness of the world, the light is different. The light is attractive. The light holds all power.
They will remember that moment of light.
My gratitude overflows at the gift it is to walk alongside many others who see the value of that 30 minutes of sharing God with one teen - how amidst the deafening clamor of the world, opening the door to God for them to see this flash of light can change the entire course of their days.
We get many of these short moments with many people who walk through our lives. One second of showing God's love to someone can do monumental things...are you seizing that moment or letting it pass by? May every person we have an encounter with go away believing that there is still great love, peace, and charity still left in this world.
"Let no one ever come to you without leaving better and happier. Be the living expression of God's kindness." - Blessed Mother Teresa