My grandson’s fractured leg… and the children of Ukraine

 Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everyone. If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord. On the contrary:

“If your enemy is hungry, feed him;
    if he is thirsty, give him something to drink.
In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.”

Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

This is not just a post about our grandson, Geoffrey. It is a post about children; it is a post about Ukraine; it is a post about war.

Yesterday afternoon, so exited about his growing mobility, and how much fun it is to run around and play, Geoffrey had an altercation with the slide at the children’s playground. Our daughter Naomi captioned the ensuing photograph:

“Playground slide: 1; Geoffrey: 0

#Geoffreysfractured #Geoffreysatrooper.”

Naomi Campbell

I am very sad for Geoffrey; and even more sad for his parents, who now have to deal with a frustrated 16-month old who is not allowed to put any weight on his right leg.

Here is what happened after Geoffrey was hurt and would not stop crying:

  1. His parents took him to the Urgent Care clinic, where the medical team discovered the fracture, stabilized the leg.
  2. Urgent Care sent him on to the children’s Emergency Room.
  3. Naomi and Craig then spent several hours at the E.R., where Geoffrey received a temporary cast and they all got home at 3:00 in the morning.
  4. Geoffrey is being cared for, loved on, held, and nurtured by his family.
  5. Now Geoffrey has an appointment at Children’s Hospital to set everything properly once the initial swelling goes down.

Healing will involve a lot of work, and patience, and care; but Geoffrey has a family who loves him, two fully engaged parents, great medical insurance, and access to state of the art care.

How does this relate to Ukraine?

I only point all of this out because one of the most terrible things war does is to hurt children – without pity – and then remove so many of the above listed supports from a child’s life that recovery is next to impossible.

The following photograph is from the children’s hospital in Kiev. Many times each day, often as much as 7-8, all the children have to be moved to the basement because of shelling.

– The bomb shelter of the pediatric ward of Okhmatdyt Children’s Hospital on Feb. 28 in Kyiv
 Chris McGrath—Getty Images

Children are already there for things like cancer treatment, but every day more and more children arrive with life-threatening injuries from the war. Not just a fracture like Geoffrey, but multiple, terrible, teetering on the edge of death breaks and wounds and lacerations and amputations and more.

Some of these children have lost one or both of their parents in the rubble of their homes. Or their parents are equally wounded. Or their parents are missing.

Just a couple of weeks ago, the worst that could happen would have been a fracture on the playground, followed by all the love and support in the world, just like Geoffrey.

– NC writer Derek Maul, Wake Forest

Not now. This is the price Putin is willing to pay for territorial ambition. And much of the cost is being born by children no different to our grandson, Geoffrey.

If you are not praying at this point, today would be a good time to begin. “Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good” (Romans 12:21).

In love, and because love is the only solution with the power to defeat the darkness – DEREK

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