Refer to STEP 5: I recognize the only way back to a productive life is exactly the way I came. I have to repair my relationship with God and make amends with everyone I have wronged along the way.
Adversity is the mint in which God stamps upon man his image and superscription.
—Henry Ward Beecher
When spiritual abuse occurs, there is always the temptation to conclude God doesn’t care or that He really isn’t there—not really. To feel this way is normal, at least for a while. Along with these feelings, the following question is universally asked: “If God is really in charge of everything, then how could he have allowed this to happen?”
Even Christ asked the question when He was on the cross—”Why have You forsaken Me?”
With Christ, the answer is obvious. If God had rescued His Son, Christ would not have died for our sins. Being forever lost, we would have no way to reestablish a relationship with God. I’m grateful that He didn’t, aren’t you?
But why didn’t God rescue you or those people in Oklahoma? He could have, but He chose not to. Instead, He allows people to go through a world of suffering. Why would He do that? Does it mean He doesn’t really care about us after all? In your own circumstance, when God didn’t rescue you, did that mean you were abandoned by Him?
No, it doesn’t mean that at all. It means He has treated you like a son or a daughter, allowing you to suffer at the hands of someone abusive—just like He allowed His Son to suffer at the hands of the Pharisees. God could have rescued Jesus, but He didn’t.
God had a purpose for what happened to Christ, and He has a purpose for what happened to you as well. Knowing how many hairs you have on your head, God knows your situation more intimately than you do. He is aware of every aspect of your abuse and, no matter how badly you’ve been hurt, He is still in charge—no matter what.
His silence may seem unjust, but it is not. His silence may seem unkind and unloving, but it is not. You may not feel His presence and you probably don’t, but He is there for you no matter what. You can not only count on it, but you must count on it.
All discipline for the moment seems not to be joyful, but sorrowful; yet to those who have been trained by it, afterwards it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness. (Hebrews 12:11)