Reach out your hand to comfort them

Here is one of those posts, the one that is not letting me go to bed even when I feel that I am emotionally drained. Someone I knew used to say “don´t be that girl” but I think today I will “be that girl”.

These last few weeks have not been the best. On a personal level, I am tired because between work, classes, paying bills, church, trying to make decisions that will affect my life later, and trying to eat better, my schedule is kind of crazy! So I don’t get as much sleep as I should or as I would love to! (At this point I could sleep 24 hours straight!). At the same time, office things have been a bit discouraging the past few weeks.

Why? Well, we hit three road blocks in different cases. In the first case, a DNA test shows that the baby born as a result of a rape is not a match genetically to the person we thought abused her mother.  Until this “small detail” is resolved, we can´t move forward in the case. Second road block: a few weekends ago one of our clients who has been sexually assaulted tried to commit suicide. This young boy is 11 years old.  I can´t imagine all the pain and frustration in his mind and heart right now. It is difficult to understand how much we, as humans, can hurt others by trying to satisfy our own desires without thinking of the consequences, trying to obtain what we want regardless of who we need to hurt in the process. GOSH WE ARE BROKEN! And third, one of the worst cases I have ever heard, a 24 year old dude raped a 7 month baby. Yes, I said 7 MONTHS, not 7 years. We took the case and while we were trying to move forward on it to secure justice for this precious little angel that survived the brutal assault, the guy committed suicide inside jail.

I am sorry if the last paragraph was too much information to take. I am feeling overwhelmed about all of this. I don’t know how I should react. I mean, I know in my head, but my heart is aching. What does a 24 year old man have going on in his head when he decided to rape a 7 month baby? Let’s rephrase the question: What in the world is going on with humanity!? Are sexual desires more important than people?! I could blame the media, we all do! But I do not think they are the only ones to blame, at the end of the day they only reproduce what the “society” wants to “see”.

(I do not have the copy rights of this picture. I took it from FB)

Note: Someone shared this image on Facebook last week. The caption said: * the first image refers to the pedophilia in the Vatican. * The second image relates to child sexual commerce as Tourism in Thailand. * The third image refers to the war in Syria. * The fourth image refers to the traffic of organs in the black market where the first victims are the children of the poorest countries.* The fifth image refers to free weapons use in the United States. * And finally, the sixth image relates to child obesity caused by major fast food companies.

As I said before, sometimes I think society is way too broken. How do you cope with things like this?

I mean, I am a human being. So I get overwhelmed, and then I get angry. REALLY ANGRY! I cry like a baby that has been left without milk for days! I feel this big emptiness right between my chest and my throat. I watch no.thinking.required movies to get my mind off of  thinking about this; I stretch; I eat TONS of chocolate; and when I can´t take it anymore I do what I know I should do in the first place… I cry in front of God and pray. But not a, “oh your will is perfect” prayer, it is something more like Habakkuk: WHY DO YOU LET ME SEE ALL THESE EVIL THINGS?? Why do you make me look at injustice? Why do you tolerate wrong?

And then… then I realize the point is not “WHY DO I SEE?” but more “HOW CAN I HELP THEM?” And I come back to my senses, remembering that this work is not mine, is the work of the God of Justice. This world is not mine, is the world of the One that loved us so much that gave His only Son for it. I remember that His heart is even more broken than mine because I can feel sadness, but He feels rejection.  And then, somehow I can find peace by remembering that this is not the beginning or the end of our lives… it is our IN BETWEEN!

Finally, I would like to share with you something our Senior Vice President of Field Operations shared with us some weeks ago, the Benediction of St. Francis:

May God bless you with discomfort at easy answers, half-truths, and superficial relationships, so that you may live deep within your heart.

May God bless you with anger at injustice, oppression, and exploitation of people, so that you may work for justice, freedom, and peace.

May God bless you with tears to shed for those who suffer from pain, rejection, starvation, and war, so that you may reach out your hand to comfort them and to turn their pain into joy.

And may God bless you with enough foolishness to believe that you can make a difference in this world, so that you can do what others claim cannot be done.

Through this I am reminded that I am blessed! Because I can see brokenness and deep within my heart I feel their pain, because anger at injustice and oppression moves me to action and compassion. Because tears shed for those who suffer move me to reach out- out of my own bubble. And because I will always have enough foolishness to believe that I can make a difference! With all these things I am blessed, and I pray that you are too!

Love to you all and talk to you in my next post!

 * Don’t forget: You can support IJM fight for justice and you can GET INVOLVED! Just check the link below

5 thoughts on “Reach out your hand to comfort them

  1. Andrea I am blown away by this. As I read this I found myself sitting back in my chair and taking a deep breath. But I knew I had to keep reading it.

    Yes, you are right it isn’t easy to read. But if things are going to ever change then others must sit in the discomfort.

    As I read this, there is a comment that came to mind. This will initially sound maybe a bit of a harsh question, but it isn’t intended to be that.

    The question is:

    Okay, there is an obvious problem here, but what you are doing about it?

    and that is where the beauty lies in this piece. You are doing something about it. So, although it is not easy by any standard. I find it inspiring (and encouraging) that you are 1) sharing what needs to be shared and 2) taking action so you are a part of the solution.


    • Hey Izzy,
      I am sorry it took me forever to reply here! But thanks for your comment and for taking the time to read this! and I completely agree with what you said “… if things are going to ever change then others must sit in the discomfort.”
      Thanks for sharing this with me!


  2. wow Andy esto si que me rompio el corazon. Que historias tan duras. Me imagino como te sientes, por que solo imaginandome lo que describes me dolio el corazon. Estoy segura que Dios te esta utilizando para ayudar a esa gente, y tu dolor es solo parte del motor que genera energia para que sigas trabajando en favor de la justicia. Estare orando por ti, mi amiga. “No temas, porque yo estoy contigo; no desmayes, porque yo soy tu Dios que te esfuerzo; siempre te ayudaré, siempre te sustentaré con la diestra de mi justicia. Isa. 41:10”


what do you think??

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s