Sunday, March 8, 2009

The Power of Survivors

During my life, I’ve met some truly impressive people. People with superior intellect. People with exceptional talent. And people possessing enormous power and influence. But none have had a greater impact on my life than a group of young women and little girls who have survived trafficking and sexual abuse. Why is that?

Survivors don’t necessarily possess superior intellect or remarkable talent. And certainly they don’t possess enormous power and influence. Or do they?

Survivors possess the power to mobilize us like few can. I didn’t get involved in this cause after hearing a persuasive speech by a passionate and intelligent communicator. Nobody with remarkable talent enlisted my support. It was the power of one survivor’s story that captivated me. She first caught my attention and then my heart. And it’s the remarkable power of survivors that hold me firmly in this ministry’s grasp.

Survivors possess the power to teach us. Recently, I threw out my back. And I spent days moaning and complaining to my wife about how miserable I was. She was very patient and understanding, but I’m sure that she tired of my whining. Every time I visit Rapha House, I’m impressed with how cheerful and loving these girls are, despite what they have experienced. Without words, they are teaching me important lessons about life.

Survivors inspire. For most of my life, I’ve struggled deeply with religious questions, including wondering if tragedy can defeat faith in God. I’ve seen it happen in others. Yet I’ve witnessed something odd at Rapha House: Girls who have found God through horrible tragedy. And that inspires me.

Whether they know it or not, survivors posses incredible real power, even more than what I’ve mentioned. And I am privileged to know and serve them.

But he said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." —2 Corinthians 12:9