Giggles and Gifts: Another Visit with Sweetie
An Update from the President
In February I was able to visit Sweetie, now five years old, for the first time since she was taken from the “madam” who had been raising her in a brothel. I wasn’t quite sure what to expect when visiting the government orphanage where she had lived since last summer—but it turns out I didn’t have to! Two hours before my visit, she was taken from there and put into a much better home. I cannot go into details for safety reasons, but it was epic. Her birth mother had been found, and a partner of WAR, Int’l facilitated this legal rescue. That meant I didn’t have to be involved, which is the best scenario. Instead, I literally followed her out of her bondage.
I sat with Sweetie and her mom and gave this sweet little girl a small package of gifts. She cuddled a stuffed bunny donated by a WAR, Int’l friend and was fascinated by a tiny handmade crystal angel. I had been given perfume water—highly prized in India—and I showed her how a girl wears perfume. She giggled with delight. I wanted to weep with relief that she might have the chance to grow up as “a real little girl.” The candy—a chocolate bunny—is what brought her running to me! I showed her the video of us playing and her dancing the last time I saw her while she was still in captivity. She giggled and laughed and relaxed.
For now, Sweetie will have a home and family and go to school. Her birth mom will enter a vocational training program and then receive a microenterprise loan to start up a business in her own hometown. We pray that this works, as she is very fragile and ill, and this will take hard work and dedication.
She is not out of danger. There are so many hidden land mines here that I can’t even begin to describe. This is going to be a long, up-and-down road. But I will stick by Sweetie until there is no breath left in my body. Pray for this tiny, precious child who has known such hardship and abuse: being kept in a box, moved time and time again, and bounced from pillar to post—sometimes tied to them. Pray for a wall of fire and protection around her heart. It will be a miracle if she grows up to be “normal.” Frankly, it’s a miracle any of us grow up to be normal, even without dealing with anything nearly as devastating as what she has experienced.
And there are millions of other children like her. She was uniquely singled out for excessive abuse, but there are so many other children growing up in the red-light districts and sewers of the world with gutter rats (four- and two-legged) as their companions. All of these children matter to us.
As we work toward getting Sweetie into school and into a loving Indian home, we are praying for no surprises—knowing full well there will continue to be oodles of them. We will deal with them one at a time, with a God who times things so amazingly. I have a deep, abiding peace about this. Regardless of the outcome, we at WAR, Int’l are committed to caring for this little life.