Again this summer, BOL had opportunity to serve 70 single mothers with their little children who were saved from abortion and abandonment, as well as women who have experienced sexual exploitation and violence. For most, this week is the only peaceful time they will have. As usual, we shared with the women about holistic understanding of themselves. We believe that by discovering ourselves as personalities and creatures of God, we inevitably take the road to Him and, as He is revealed, we understand His intent for our lives.
If tension, intense mistrust of strangers and unsociability marked the beginning of the camp, the last days were ones of openness, joy and acceptance for most of the women and their children. We realise that this is an echo of their life situation and past experiences, with which we are helping them to cope.
While our team was taking care of children, mothers had time to reflect on important issues. The whole program was designed in such as way that each participant could find answers to their hard questions, such as:-
“Oh, God, why have I had to suffer so much? Why do my children have to suffer? I cry through the nights, scared of being forcedly ejected from my house with my children.”
“God, I believe that you created me so, but I don’t like myself. All people around me hate me, thinking that I’m good-for-nothing. Why did you sacrifice Jesus’ life for me? I’m not worthy! Why doesn’t my family love me? I’m so tired of that! When will my pain and problems end?”
Yet the Bible discussions and lessons gave these disadvantaged women time to also think of reasons for thankfulness:-
“Thanks to you, my God, for life given to me, for my family and work I have.”
“Thank you, Jesus, that you died for me and love me without conditions.”
“I thank God that He gave me chance to look at the world with different eyes…”
Amazing dialogue, that was created within our discussions and expressed in the more attentive attitudes towards children. Irritation was replaced by loving care. The best example of this was little Benyamin. At the beginning of camp, he was very aggressive and nervous, but after a while his heart melted and he started calmly playing with other children without beating them, and was letting his mother walk without him.
Anna, on her fourth year at camp, said: “It is so peaceful and warm here with you. My soul gets rest from everyday problems. I want to remain with you… I want to be as you are… Thanks to God for these bright moments in my life.”