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Group Blogging Project: Too Small To Ignore – Chapter 8 – “Silence of the Lambs”

(picture originally uploaded to Flickr by Naccarato)

For more info on what this group blogging project on the book Too Small To Ignore, read this.

Review of Chapter 8, “Silence of the Lambs”
by Bonnie Deroski

What a surprise this little chapter was! After the idyllic scenes of community, love and acceptance, we see the torture, humiliation and loneliness of Wess’ years at the mission school. Our hearts move from beating for the safety, health and spiritual growth of the African families, to the broken-spirits of the children of missionaries.

For nine months out of the year, Wess (along with other children of missionaries) lived at a school created to be a support to missionary families by housing, educating and nurturing their children. We hear instead, about teachers and a school system that inflicted unthinkable pain and suffering upon these young lives. Secrecy and fear prevented these children from sharing with their parents and other trusted adults what had actually transpired at their school.

While the physical aspects of this type of treatment are shocking, it is the lasting impact of a broken spirit that speaks to my heart. Unlike physical abuse, emotional abuse is elusive and difficult to pinpoint or quantify. The scars it leaves are hidden and cannot easily be documented. And yet we all know what it looks like to see a child who has been emotionally beaten down, and had their joy of living stolen from them. This type of abuse can occur in any situation, among the wealthiest, brightest and even the most religious families. It can occur in the families of pastors and doctors, welfare moms and garbage collectors. It can be inflicted upon well-behaved children, and physically challenged children. And like any other form of abuse, its foundation is in the selfishness of the perpetrator.

I am thankful to the author for baring his soul and reminding those of us in ministry, that our mission field is not always easily identified by externals. God looks on the heart, and so must we, in order to minister to the least of these.


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