Thursday, August 12, 2010

Were You Abused in Childhood? There is a way out of the darkness.

This may be the last post I ever write on this blog. God is teaching me about boundaries, and the path may include to quit writing on this blog. If it is the last post, I want you to hear this if you've been abused in childhood:

If you have been abused in childhood, the shame and guilt you feel is normal. The difficulty with relationships is normal. The pain and confusion you feel is normal. While all these things are normal, God does not desire for you to stay where you are emotionally, physically, and spiritually. I know the way out of it seems much more difficult and painful than just staying where you are. That is a lie. Satan loves to keep those of us who were abused in a state of immobility. He will tell you you're never going to feel normal like everyone else. He'll tell you things will always be the way they are right now. You have a choice. You can believe your feelings or you can believe God's Word. God promises in 1 Corinthians 10:13, that when you are tempted, he will provide a way out. If you're tempted to remain where you are, He will provide a way out. He is faithful and true. (Rev. 19:11) You are not the only one. Statistics show that approximately 1 in 4 women have been abused. (Have heard this a few times...don't have a reference.) Jesus tells us in John 14:6 (emphasis mine), I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the father except through me. Jesus is the way out.

One of the most effective lies at keeping me immobile was - "I did not trust God if I needed a counselor for help." I have experienced myself and read several times from others, the importance of one who has been abused going to a christian counselor. I am not saying everyone needs one, because God can do anything, in whatever way he chooses. However, if you are considering going, but haven't taken the step because of fear, just go. The following steps were helpful for me. I don't believe this is "thee" path, but hopefully in sharing, it will give you help you.

1. Came to a point where I had done everything I knew to do (read books, bible study, prayer, individual counseling w/ pastor, talked w/ friends), and I knew I still was not healing. I was circling around and around.

2. Came to a point where I thought I might go over the edge. I wasn't sure what that meant. I was not suicidal, but I felt as though I might be one step away from my brain flying apart in a million pieces.

3. God brought a particular christian counselor into my life through a friend. She had been seeing him. I trusted her, so I thought he might be trustworthy.

4. I called the counselor and made an appt.

5. I freaked. I called my pastor, talked w/ my husband. I had my mind made up that this counselor, for sure, was a perpetrator in disguise. (This is the label most men received in my life at the time. All were suspect and none were safe.)

6. I went to the appt. It was not easy. But w/ each appt., a small crack in darkness appeared, and I could see a little more light w/ each step. I began to trust my counselor a little more each time. When I would leave, I would want to thank him. As I recall, he never said, "You're welcome." He knew who was doing the healing, and it wasn't him.

7. Healing began over a period of several months and it continues today. Through the counselor and books he recommended, God healed many parts of me. I actually came to the point where I woke up one day and knew I could breathe freely. I wanted to run out into the day and shout for joy. At one point, I was settled to say, I was healed completely. I don't know if this is a totally true statement. I believe I may continue to walk out healing the rest of my time on earth. I do know that in Jesus' blood, we have redemption...(Eph. 1:7) I know that I have died and my life is now hidden with Christ in God. (Col. 3:3) I know that Jesus came to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners. (Isaiah 61:1)

~To God alone be the glory for my healing and yours.


Sunday, August 8, 2010

The Knots

The words of someone else from the unspoken depths of my heart. Praise God for this person who so wonderfully put into words what my heart desperately wanted to utter today.

The Knots Poem

Please untie the knots that are in my mind
my heart and my life.
Remove the have-nots, can-nots, and do-nots
that I have in my mind.

Erase the will-nots, may-nots,
and might-nots
that may find a home in my heart.

Release me from the could-nots, would-nots,
and should-nots that obstruct my life.

And most of all, Dear God,
I ask that you remove from my mind,
my heart, and my life,
all the am-nots
that I have allowed to hold me back,
especially the thought that I am not good enough.

Author Known to God

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Monday, August 2, 2010

Camp Wounded-dedicated to the hurting

Camp Wounded~dedicated to the hurting
I had lived at Camp Wounded since the age of 10. At Camp Wounded, no visitors came in, and I rarely went out. Walls were erected high around the camp. If anyone knocked on the gate, sometimes I dared to open it a crack, only to slam it shut on the person’s requests to come in. I would pace Camp Wounded, replaying all the times the abuse came. I would think and cry and think and cry. I wanted so badly to leave Camp Wounded, but I didn’t know the way out. To even think of trying to explain it to another soul was heart-wrenching and nearly unthinkable, so I supposed I would live my life and eventually die at Camp Wounded.

But, one day, there was a different sounding knock at the gate. It wasn’t the loud clamoring knock; I heard when most people came. It was a quiet, beckoning knock. It was as if the one knocking knew I was inside, dying to come out. I was drawn to the gate. As I cracked the gate door just enough to hear voice of the one at the gate, he spoke. He offered me freedom from Camp Wounded, but I would need to work with him. I would need to allow him to demolish the walls erected around the camp. He was offering to come in if I accepted, yet he would not start the demolition until I agreed. I allowed the gate to stand open just a crack and then paced around the Camp. Could I really do this? Could I accept this help? It seemed foolish to trust this stranger, especially since he had only spoken a few words, yet foolish not to. What if he hurt me? What if he was just trying to get into Camp Wounded to do what had been done to me before? What if he left in the middle of his work? Abandoned again. Then what? Half demolished walls would need rebuilt. What if he uncovered the shame and guilt? This went on for two days. Pacing, questioning, crying, yelling-partly to myself, partly to the wind, and I suppose, partly to him. I would periodically return to the gate to see if he had left. Each time I returned to the gate, he was still there, patiently waiting. I don’t know what made me make the decision I chose. I suppose it was the fear of dying at Camp Wounded. I suppose I figured if I left him in and he hurt me or abandoned his work in the middle, I was no worse off. After two days of anguish, I went to the gate and opened the door. I asked him to come in. He brought nothing with him. No tools. No equipment. Just him.

“How are you going to do this without the necessary equipment?” I asked.

“Renovations of the heart take nothing but me, child,” he replied.

“What, what, the heart?” I didn’t ask you in to do anything to my heart. It’s the walls. I want the walls torn down. The walls that people built to keep me inside,” I cried and screamed in frustration.

“Child, others didn’t build these walls,” he said, “you did”.

“Me!?” I screamed. “Me? I knew it. You’re just like all the others. You want to blame me for what happened to me.” He drew a breath to speak, but I continued on. “How could I, a child the age of 5, have done that? It wasn’t my fault!” The last words echoed around the camp, bringing cries from the depths of my soul to the surface. I dropped to the ground and sobbed. I felt him near me. He wasn’t speaking. I was half expecting him to walk out. When I peered up through tears, to see where he had gone, he standing over me, crying. He knelt to the ground, squared his face with mine, and looked me in the eyes, and then he spoke.

“Child, I know it wasn’t your fault. I was there. I saw every single thing that happened. I hurt just as you did, even more. When I see a child hurting, it breaks my heart.”
His words sounded sincere, as ones that can be trusted. Then I asked him the question I had asked myself at least a hundred times before.

“Then, why didn’t you stop it?”

He responded. “Child, you’ll not understand the why, even if I try to explain it in every possible way.”

I just stood and looked at him, not knowing where we could possibly go from here. Trapped again. Could I really trust this man to start the work who could have certainly stopped the hurt, not to mention, prevented it?

“Just follow me, child. Learn more of who I am and the work I do, rather than asking why. I can be trusted to finish the work I’ve started.”

“The work you’ve started?” I questioned. “No work has been done.”

“Yes child, the most important step in the work has already been taken. You’ve allowed me to come in.”