When I think of people who inspire me, I’m usually drawn to those who promote peace, love, and things like the environment. I turn to websites like TED to find new inspiration, and only recently have I realized that sometimes the most inspiring people are those who show it through the small things in life.Today is the feast day of Josephine Bakhita, and since I think she is such an amazing person and a great role model she’s my inspiring human this week. She is an example of amazing forgiveness because she gave her years of terrible slavery up to God and never looked for revenge, always trying to help others and bring an end to slavery for all.
As just a young girl, Josephine was kidnapped and put into the slave trade. She would move from household to household over the years, and the treatment would only grow worse and worse. One of her owners would whip and cut her, and then put salt in these wounds to ensure they would scar. Over a hundred patterns where cut into her skin over her entire body. To mock her more they named her Bakhita meaning lucky or fortunate. She lived as a slave in these conditions for many years before a new “owner” brought her to Italy where slavery was not recognized and Josephine would finally be free.
To me, the most powerful and inspiring part of her story is that after her mistreatment she joined the Catholic faith and became a nun. She prayed for those who hurt her and for those she knew where going through what she had everyday. She talked with other nuns who where going to travel to Africa for missions about the issues and prepared them for these trips, but she never acted out of hate and she never spoke out wanting revenge for what happened to her.
I think she is so inspiring, because she didn’t let huge amounts of physical and mental abuse ruin her life, but instead she prayed for these people and asked God to forgive them. I know if I was ever in this kind of situation, praying for my captors would never be on my mind. She didn’t let something terrible take over her life and mind, and I think this is so inspiring.
Let me know what you think of her!