I had just come back from a doctor visit.
Stephen stood at the door and said he had just grabbed a man by the arm and told him not to hit his daughter at our house.
We have known there is physical abuse in the home for quite some time. One of the girls comes regularly for bandages, with a new cut or bruise a few times a week. We’ve tried to sort out what to do, but it is like so many other problems here: we have more questions than answers, more challenges than solutions. What is cultural? Burmese culture, Asian culture, or even the culture of poverty? What are the rights of illegals? How do we handle situations we can’t really change? How would Christ have responded?
And as many times before, we have attempted to manage what happens here, at our house. We may not be able to end sexual abuse, but we can make sure it doesn’t happen here. We may not be able to end hunger, but we can do our best to ensure that the people in our home aren’t wanting. We can’t cure diseases, but we can treat the injuries that come to our front door.
I don’t know if this is the right decision or theory. It’s just what we have reconciled ourselves with at the moment: represent Christ here. Make this home a place of refuge, a place of love, and a place of hope.
So when Stephen saw this father hitting his daughter, he went out, grabbed his arm, and explained he couldn’t do that here, at our house. The little girl bolted while she had the chance.
I’m glad it was him and not me. But I wish it was me and not her.
He seemed pensive, so I asked him if he felt he had done the right thing. He said yes. Just after the man left, another little girl, Meh Meh Toe, ran over to Stephen. She gave him a hug and told him thank you in Burmese.
We are praying for this little girl, particularly tonight that she doesn’t face worse.
We are praying for our home, that it would be covered in grace and goodness; that it would be protected.
We praying for this community to see Christ and know the hope of the Kingdom.
And I am really thankful for God’s goodness. I cannot begin to count or even comprehend the ways that God always sends an allegorical rainbow, like a little thank you from a nine-year-old.