Earlier this month I put up posters with tear-off slips, the ones that asked "Are you being abused?" and the tear-off slips had the number for the HOPE Center. I "primed" the sheets by tearing off one of the slips on each poster, as an invitation to anyone who was interested to go ahead and tear off another.
Today the secretary told me that more of the slips have been taken.
I don't know how to feel about it. There is a mix of feelings cascading. For a moment I feel confirmed, that my intuition was right that there was a need for even this minor form of ministry. I also feel sad, knowing that each missing slip after the first one represents someone's painful story of abuse experienced or observed. I hate being right. I wish I could have been right about anything else. I wish I could go back to the time when the external confirmation of having done the right thing came simply in a handshake and the words "Nice sermon, pastor." I am hopeful that each tiny slip of paper taken privately also represents a step that might lead to someone's healing and safety.
File under: domestic violence awareness