A woman responds to a violent attack

The gang of teenagers who beat me up that early spring night wanted my purse. But the intensity of the kicking and the fierceness of the blows with the metal object spoke the desperation of their lives. I don’t know how they felt about women, but I experienced the authority of true womanhood as I lay on the sidewalk.

All I could pray was “Thank you, God, for being with me. Thank you for being with the boys.” Whatever the mental darkness, stupidity, or lack of mental independence that spurred the attack, it was not part of their divine nature as children of God. Even though we had experienced a brutal exchange, I knew that our real relationship was in God’s family, and I prayed that they could feel that blessing and transformation.

A version of this article was originally published in The Christian Science Monitor.

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