Posts Tagged ‘Ralph Waldo Emerson’

Your Abuse Had a Purpose

Refer to Step 6: I make a commitment to turn away from my pride and refuse to become like those who have abused me. I abandon my desire to spread malice because of my pain and anger, and I chose to relinquish my right to be self-absorbed.

What lies behind us and what lies before us are small matters compared to what lies within us.

—Ralph Waldo Emerson

Here is a question for you: to whom does the Kingdom of God belong? This isn’t rhetorical. Understanding the answer is the key to your recovery, and you’ll flounder until you grasp the answer.

It belongs to the poor in spirit—to people who don’t think more highly of themselves than they ought to think. It belongs to paupers. The politically correct term for this would probably be “the homeless.”

God’s Kingdom—the only place that really matters—does not belong to those who are beautiful, successful, or wealthy. It belongs to those who are broken—to those who have been crushed, discarded, and cast aside. It belongs to those whom the more affluent consider to be expendable and useless.

When you first experienced your abuse, isn’t that how you felt—broken, humiliated, and discarded? Even if your abusive experience was some time ago, isn’t this description still occasionally accurate?

If so, then the Kingdom of God belongs to you. Or, more accurately, it can belong to you. Your experience has probably left you spiritually bankrupt, which can be helpful. It means you’re half way there, but that’s all—just half way. In some ways, it’s the most difficult half. Having been abused and shattered, you know what it’s like to have your spirit broken. The difficult part is realizing that this was a good for you and not bad.

It allowed you to recognize suffering in others and allows you to be less self-centered. It makes you more interested in your fellow human beingss. By having experienced abuse, you can develop empathy and compassion for others, which are character qualities woefully lacking in most modern day Christians.

The righteous cry and the Lord hears, and delivers him out of all his troubles. The Lord is near to the brokenhearted, and saves those who are crushed in spirit. (Psalm 34:17-18)

Jack Watts

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Refer to Step 2: I commit to stop living my life in pursuit of self-defeating behavior.


At the origin of every action is a thought.

—Ralph Waldo Emerson

It’s okay to be exactly where you are, regardless of where that might be. It doesn’t do any good to pretend you are something you’re not, either. You’re only fooling yourself. Remember, denial of the truth is never an appropriate option in recovery.

So, stop making excuses about where you are in life. Instead, tell God—and yourself—exactly where you are in each area, being completely honest. You cannot be where you aren’t. Remember, you’ll never get out of the hole until you stop digging. The best place to start is by praying about your situation. Try this prayer:

Lord, I want to do Your will, but most of the time I don’t know what it is. Right now—this very minute, I put myself into Your hands—totally and completely. I choose to believe the changes You make in me will transform me into the person You want me to be. Please, help me keep my heart and my eyes focused upon You. I know that if I do, I will never be disappointed.

Invite Him to join you exactly where you are. Even if it’s into the deepest, darkest emotional pit, He will join You and, once that happens He will never leave you.  After you have opened yourself up like this, thank God for everything He will do to do to make you into the person He wants you to be. Then, hold on to your seat because it is going to be a wild ride. When you consider backtracking, remember, God’s goal is to fill your life with love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, gentleness, faithfulness, goodness and self-control.

When my heart was embittered, and I was pierced within, then I was senseless and ignorant; I was like a beast before Thee. Nevertheless I am continually with Thee; Thou hast taken hold of my right hand. With Thy counsel Thou wilt guide me, and afterward receive me to glory. (Psalm 73:21-24)

Jack Watts

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