Bible class topic: how to help those who are abused.
The statistics stagger the mind… abuse is around us (no matter the community, city, state, country). Official, public records show the problem in our communities… and they typically only show about 10% of what is actually happening. This is a silent plague, that no one wants to talk about. But we must, because God does.
In the Old Testament God’s compassion is often described in terms of His care for the widows and orphans, those without a voice.
Psalm 146:9 The LORD protects the strangers; He supports the fatherless and the widow,
When God confronts His people with their failure to live as His people, His exhortation to them is how they treat the widow and orphan
Isaiah 1:17 Learn to do good; seek justice, reprove the ruthless, defend the orphan, plead for the widow.
Those who are abused are often ones without a voice, even worse than widows and orphans, because no one wants to admit to a problem. “Who will believe me?” “Where can I go?” The plague is silent, the ministry is hidden. But their silent voices call out to us. As Christians we can listen, we can help. We can be God’s voice of care and concern… Is abuse close to you?
One group in New York City reports this:
Safe Horizon is the largest victims’ services agency in the United States, with 57 locations serving more than 250,000 children, adults, and families affected by crime and abuse throughout New York City each year.
Notice: This agency by itself serves ¼ of a million people each year, just in NYC! What about in our own communities?
It is generally held that a woman who is abused will leave seven times before she will leave permanently—if she lives that long. That is the lonely existence for those who are abused. Isn’t it interesting that there seem to be more TV ads for abused animals than women and children who are abused? Where is the concern for humans who are abused? Where are we as Christians in this silent plague?
One person can make a difference, one community of Christians can make a difference. As people who are learning what it means to be “in Christ” we are one of those communities. The ministry is hidden, in that our concern is for the one being abused… there is no public show, no media coverage, but a caring heart taking one step, quietly away from attention, to help one who is abused.
There is help:
There are some helpful resources for your county, state, or nation. Here are just a few examples of guides and information.
bandbacktogether (thanks, Jen, for this)
This post only skims the surface on the problem of abuse. In compassion let’s address this silent plague as we work in the hidden ministry to those who are abused.
A follow-on post: …especially for men in the church