Of special interest to me recently is the issue of resiliency and a return to hope. Children who are at high risk are frequently objects of pity. They are looked upon as victims in need of being rescued. Indeed, frequently they are in need of just that. Children who are enslaved and exploited certainly deserve forceful rescue, but this is an extreme measure. Yesterday I visited a ministry that focuses on helping young girls who have been abandoned and neglected. It is truly incomprehensible what humanity is capable of. Yet despite the terrible abuse that most of the girls have experienced, they did not focus on that in our discussion times, rather they focused on the opportunities they have to help other younger girls moving into the home and how they help other children in need outside of their home. The children that I have been meeting with over the past couple of weeks have been abandoned, abused and neglected, but have come a long way. In asking them if they felt like they should forgive the perpetrators, many have said yes, but acknowledged it is not easy to forgive those who hurt them. One young girl showed me where her mother had cut off the tip of her finger. Inwardly I filled with anger, while she discussed
the importance of forgiveness. Instead of wanting to focus on the abuse, these young girls talked about helping the other younger girls in the home and how they want to be missionaries, doctors and lawyers so they could help others. I do not think it is appropriate to abandon psychological help for those who have suffered at the hands of others, yet more and more those who have suffered themselves are pointing to an altruistic response of care as a piece of the puzzle to true rehabilitation. Those that I have been meeting with are telling me that we must move away from victimization talk to a conversation that includes the other.