It’s a tricky thing trying to figure out how to address peoples needs. Most of the time we put ourselves in their shoes and try to think of something that would make us feel loved or appreciated, and then hope by implementing those things we are helping in some-small-way. The problem with this is sometimes we have no idea how that person really feels, and without knowing it we steal away some of their dignity by helping in the wrong way.
Last week the Karen Youth Organization in San Diego invited us to a celebration at their school – the picture shown above is a drawing a 15 year old Karen student made. These images are real things this kid had experienced.
I think back to when I was 15 and the things that I would draw on my notebook as I was bored in class – never was it a head being crushed under a boot of a soldier, or a person getting beaten while having his hands tied to a pole.
I had a chance to meet with him – to be honest I had no idea what to say to him, how to act, or what I could possibly offer to make things better. All I could do was thank him for sharing that part of himself with others, and let him know that though it may feel like he is alone in this – that there are others out there who want to stand beside him.