Domestic Violence Prevention|
Evey had a heavenly experience in her hospital room two years ago last March: Haggar. Nothing could have been attributed to a coincidence here.
Let me recount this as our first note on abuse especially among our target group, the Easterners, or Muslims. Abuse occurs worldwide, but among Easterners abuse is less an aberration, and more of a way of life control, live design and needs to stop, whether or not perpetrated by a specific culture or religion. Even where it does not stop, we want to care. What happened two years ago? Read on.
So something miraculous happened in the hospital. First, there is this cleaning lady from Tunisia who cleans in one uniform/dress and then changes clothes to deliver the food. Her name is Haggar, still unmarried, and the last born of 8 in her family. Haggar is a Muslim, which is of great interest to Evey and to me, because no one could have arranged this meeting but God. Haggar, a committed Muslim, said she could marry a Moroccan, an Algerian, or even a Frenchman if he would convert to Islam. Evey had long conversations with Haggar. Why a miracle? The encounter told Evey that God is sending Muslims her way. Evey's very life seemed authenticated in the ministry she feels called to. But the real cold sweat came onto Evey from her new roommate Sania.
Abused and Forced Marriages, Sania: Miracle In Room 105.
Evey had a day of quiet, then came her roommate Sania with a triple leg fracture from skiing. Sania is a non-practicing Muslim from Pakistan. She is a leader of an organization geared toward recovery from acid abuse. This is not LSD, folks. But Muslim women who tire of beatings - and leave their husbands - are sometimes attacked by their husband's friends and doused with disfiguring acid. Sania also works with women who are in forced (not arranged, but forced) into marriages.
As a non-practicing Muslim, Sania cannot understand the rise of Islamic fundamentalism. Her purpose in life, however, is caring for abused women of Islam, the precise direction that Evey and I are heading, very similar. Evey had to take the phone off the hook for a time in order to talk with Sania in depth. Totally sharing the Lord with her. But Sania herself was a miracle in room 105 - an inspiration and a door-opener to Evey's future, for sure.
Sania has worked with women like the 24-year-old that the old Mullah (cleric) would marry only after she was circumcised. Or the 16-year-old married Pakistani woman who was living in England. Her mother flew her to Pakistan under false pretenses and forced her into a clinic where, sedated, was given an abortion against her will.
More on the acid girls. This is graphic, and for this I apologize. But it is real life with the abuse that shows a nuance among Muslim women. How are they helped? First, they are beaten and accept this because they saw their mothers "live" with it. Some never leave the abuse. Second, some who leave get the acid treatment. Not all, but some get this punishment. Some then come for help. Sania brings women into a recovery center that allows them to stay for a full year. But here's the problem. When they leave the center, many, many women head into prostitution, because they have not been helped spiritually - and because the girls feel morally or physically disfigured and hopeless. Yes, yes, but Evey felt Sania was a prototype of a caring, generous woman of action and compassion. Can't we see that abuse needs recovery with Jesus as Lord!
But in summary, Evey could hardly even speak. The Lord was knitting Himself to Evey's heart in a way that could only be God. Sania was part of this miracle. Just ask yourself how all these people could be sent to Evey's hospital room.
Jesus was weaving His story and His future into Evey even as He was knitting her hand artery back together. Multi-tasking has never had a finer hour.
My Letter To You, An Abused Woman Reading Here:
My suggestion to you, perhaps a Muslim woman caught in abuse: If you are determined to leave your parents’ home or your husband’s home, there will be serious repercussions if you leave. Surely you love your family. But leaving, though an option, will cause you to be blamed for disgracing the family. You will be ostracized, told you have a curse, maybe even subjected to violence to keep you from disgracing the family. But your abuse must end. Jesus is your friend. Never forget that. You are at spiritual and physical risk. Ask a caring Christian sister for prayer and share your story as you decide what to do.