I am a bit nervous to post this. It is very rough. I wrote it a few months ago, late at night. My thoughts were all over the place. But best to put it out there and see what I need to work on!
A few years ago, I read a book called A Thousand Splendid Suns for my book club. I had never known much about the Muslim world or the life that is led in Afghanistan besides what was shown on the news. The fighting, violence, death and sadness that surrounds that area is certainly widespread knowledge. However, the lives that women are forced to lead in that area is disheartening and tragic. These women are women of strength and courage. Women who live in such situations and continue to thrive, raise children and manage to deal with the abuse and self depreciating circumstances are quite amazing. They move forward with hope and don’t often complain. They are intelligent, loving and hopeful for the future. I admire them.
I am a big reader, but have not been affected by many of the books I have read. Not in this way. I cried for these women and imagined their potential and what they would be able to accomplish if given the right opportunity and the right tools. This book is a beautiful portrayal of the human spirit. Of rising above the ashes. Of conquering evil and moving forward through crushing opposition. I think all people should read this to understand another point of view. To understand the trials and struggles that others go through. I certainly learned so much and this knowledge made me want to help these people.
I have always wanted to be of some assistance to people in such tragic conditions. I have thought, how can I do something for these people who are unable to do them for themselves. How can I make a difference in the lives of those who are suffering. Someday, I hope to be able to come to the aid of these people. To somehow bless the lives of women and children who live in deplorable circumstances. For now, I can learn about them and about their lives and how I can help in the future. If you want to read a life changing book, read this! It is not an easy read in that the subject matter is difficult. It is so hard to come out of our comfort zones and learn about topics that are so terribly sad. It is worth it though!
I know I forget at times how blessed I am to live in America. To have freedoms. To have safety. To not have to fear for my life. I believe that people in our circumstances who have been blessed with so much have the duty to give to those who have harder lives. I hope someday when my kids are grown, I will be able to travel to Afghanistan or other countries where women are oppressed. Where they don’t have the rights that they so deeply desire and deserve. I don’t know how I would help, but I would help.
I know someone who volunteers in an orphanage in Haiti a few times a year. The pictures are heart breaking and inspiring at the same time. How can an image have such opposite qualities, I wonder? Is it because of the small children and babies without parents, without families and yet they still continue to smile? Is it that they are grateful for just one piece of candy? Is it the hope you can see in their faces, though we wonder sometimes what might they have to be hopeful about? I think it’s the recognition that the human spirit can conquer all things. That through the oppression and difficulties, hunger, thirst, loneliness, sadness, that these children are pushing forward and surviving. And with optimism. I admire them.
I know God has placed us on Earth in different eras, in different locations, in different situations for a reason. We all have a mission to fulfill. All missions are essential to that person. My life is not glamorous. I don’t get dressed till afternoon most days! But I feel like our lives are all of equal importance to that God who created us. We could be the president of the United States, the president of a million dollar company or the president of the HOA, the Lord doesn’t mind. He does mind; however, with what we do with our missions. With how we fulfill them, not what they are. And this might be why these children and these women touch me so deeply. Because they fulfill their missions with honor and with dignity. They do not ask for more. They do not ask for much. They want freedom to live. Freedom to worship. Freedom to speak as they please. To fulfill their mission. I hope I can fulfill my mission with these same qualities and in the process, be able to help others fulfill their missions as well.