Wednesday, 20 April 2016
CHILDREN AND ADOLESCENT RECOVERING FROM CHILD ABUSE (PART 2)
REDEEMING YOUR STORY
The abuse you suffered is part of the stage upon which your life choices will now take place. It’s out of the choices you are facing right now that great good can come. That doesn’t mean that you will forget the evil done to you. Martin Luther King never forgot the evils of racism. It was the reason he started a movement that changed our country. Candy Lightner did not forget that her thirteen year old daughter was killed by a drunk driver. Her daughter’s death became the impetus for forming MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Driving), an organization that works to stop drunk driving.
You also can choose how to respond to the evil that was done to you. You can grow in gratitude, joy, purpose, and the ability to help others and live your life with courage and conscious intent. A few years ago I counseled a thirty-five year old woman named Joann. She had suffered terrible physical and sexual abuse at the hands of many male relatives from the age of three to fourteen. She was finally rescued by a social worker and placed in foster care. When I met her she was married, had two children, and had become a social worker herself who counseled abused children.
Joann hadn’t forgotten her suffering and was still working through its effects, but her life story was about more than her abuse. She was creating a loving home for her husband and children and reaching out to others who were suffering as she had. Her suffering wasn’t forgotten, it was redeemed.
The gospel of John closes with this verse, “And there are also many other things which Jesus did, which if they were written in detail, I suppose that even the world itself would not contain the books that would be written” (John 21:25). Your life is one of those books that John was talking about. You’re continuing the story of what “Jesus did.” It’s a story where terrible evils happened to you, but Jesus showed up and did something—he redeemed you and is still redeeming you so that you can love, forgive, and do good to those around you. Your story is not only about the pain of betrayal, it’s about Jesus taking what others meant for evil and redeeming it for a good purpose.
CULLED FROM DAVIDSON POWLISON