I’m admonished, “It’s all for a purpose,”
By friends who want to “fix me”
And lift the sorrow from my heart.
But it doesn’t help—
Nor does it ease my pain,
Not even a little.
I can pretend to understand my plight—
To know the lessons I’m being taught,
But I don’t—not really.
Question: Reflecting upon your situation, do you do you understand why it happened? Or, are you clueless? If the latter, ask God to give you insight into the reasons behind your experience.
When you come to the end of yourself—when you’ve bottomed out and feel certain your future will remain forever bleak, that’s when God becomes more real than ever. It’s also the time when He becomes free to change you in ways that count. Until a person reaches the end of himself or herself—until they hit absolute rock bottom, then their self-will, which is always ambitious, has ends of its own to serve.
Question: Have you bottomed out? Wouldn’t you like more joy and peace in your life than you’re experiencing?
Being angry is normal but, by becoming stuck in your anger, you will only experience one thing—bitterness. When bitterness clutches your soul, it diminishes the quality of your life, insuring that you will never become the person God intended you to be. Bitterness can run so deeply in you that it’s as addictive as a controlled substance—a habit nearly impossible to break. Once it takes grip, it becomes part of you, diminishing your capacity for every positive character quality you’ve ever possessed. It can even alter how you look, producing a sour, defeated countenance, which is certainly not what you want for yourself.
Journal: Only you know how bitter your heart really is. Take as much time as needed and write about it. Be as specific and detailed as you can and, above all, be candid and honest.
Now that you have gone through the difficulties associated with religious abuse, can you begin to see how much more valuable you’ve become? Can you understand why it was important for the abuse to have occurred? Can you begin to see why you are far more important to God than you were before your difficulties?
Journal: Take a few minutes and write down at least three ways your abuse has made you a better person. If you can’t think of any, it’s okay. Be honest about that as well.