The abuse in my testimony spanned the gamut of physical, emotional and spiritual. I continue to struggle some days, like many of you. I stand on God’s promise that healing comes when we see to the hurting of others. This is one of my favorite passages.
“Is not this the fast that I choose:
to loose the bonds of wickedness,
to undo the straps of the yoke,
to let the oppressed go free,
and to break every yoke?
Is it not to share your bread with the hungry
and bring the homeless poor into your house;
when you see the naked, to cover him,
and not to hide yourself from your own flesh?
Then shall your light break forth like the dawn,
and your healing shall spring up speedily;
your righteousness shall go before you;
the glory of the Lord shall be your rear guard.” (Isaiah 58: 6-8 ESV)
Can we come along side the victims with our prayers and encouragement? Can we listen to their story? Can we give them a voice? Can we put them before pastor and church image? Can we love them as commanded to love our neighbors as ourselves?
When we do, our light will break through, and our healing will spring up and spread.
“Abuse victims can choose to wear the label and use it as an excuse, or they can work through the effects of the abuse and allow God to mold the ashes
of the past into his purposes to help other victims out of the pit. The work is gut wrenching and hard. It requires counseling and a circle of supportive
family and friends. The road is uphill and continues throughout life. A church that obfuscates or abandons victims in an attempt to retain members
or uphold the church’s image makes the climb out of the pit of abuse that much harder.” (Taylor, Joy S, A View from the Pews — The Inside Story of a Broken Church, 2022, Lily of the Valley Publishing, Santa Claus, IN, p. 12.)