Thursday, August 10, 2006

Hurt and Hope

I've developed this addiction lately with blogs and following the links in blogs. Recently I came across BooMama's Blog and all the posts about God's grace, abuse, and healing. One of the commenters said "I mean if God allowed this to happen to your kid would you just praise God and say he had a reason for it?" and I responded to that with this:

God did allow this to happen in my family. It was my child. She was 6 at the time. And her abuser was the person I trusted most in the world. I can tell you my reaction, and it wasn't to immediately praise God. I was angry, angry on so many levels, at so many people. The anger came and went, but mostly stayed. I cried a LOT. I wondered why. Why didn't I see it? Why didn't she tell me? Why her? Why me? Some days the hurt was so big it was crushing. But as time went on, I began to see God's fingerprints on the situation. God knew what was going on, He gave the abuser a chance to stop and make things right, He put me and my family in the place where we needed to be to get the help we would need, and then He stepped in to rescue my daughter. Eventually, I got to the point where I saw that I had to choose to praise God. It's a choice we make. You know it's pretty hard to be depressed when you are thanking and praising God! At least, it was for me. I would have been crushed under the weight of all that happened if it weren't for occasionally being able to thank God anyway. And when you do that, you find things to be thankful for.

And I'll tell you, I didn't get past the anger at God until I got past the anger at myself. And it wasn't just because I felt guilty this happened to my daughter. I had been angry at myself for years. How can you forgive anybody else when you loathe yourself? It's pretty hard! I was angry at myself because I believed all the lies Satan told me over the years - I wasn't a good enough mom, I wasn't smart enough, pretty enough, witty enough, skinny enough... When I sifted through all that trash and got to the truth about my value to God, THEN I was able to get rid of a lot of that anger. And my life has never been the same. God DOES love you, and He did when you were being abused. He loved me when my father was hitting me with a 2x4 telling me how stupid I was. And He loves my daughter too. While I am not thankful for the evil this man brought to our lives, I am thankful that God knew about it, and knew how to take care of us through it.

Two and half years later, my daughter is 9 now, and she's still healing. Most of the time I think she's doing pretty well. Some of the time I think she's playing the "I'm ok, you're ok" game. When she gets to the point where she's ready to ask God "why did you let that happen to me?" I'm sure God will be expecting the question. If she listens hard enough, I have no doubt He'll give her the answer.
There are real and tangible testimonies of God's love and provision throughout our horror story. I want to be able to share these stories, and it's originally why I started this blog in the first place, but I've chickened out as time went on. Why? Not because I am ashamed - I'm not. I did nothing wrong and my daughter did nothing wrong. More because I didn't know if anybody would read them or get anything from them, if I was wasting precious internet space. But I think it is important for me to tell them, both for myself, and even if only 1 other person gets anything from them. So that's what I'm going to do, little by little share why we have hope, and why we have faith in the One that can give peace that passes understanding.


Janean said...

I am SO crying right now! This is EXACTLY why I am a single! Can we email and share? I have so many questions.

Jo Ann said...

I can hardly put into words how "Hurt and Hope" has touched me. Thank you for saying what I have wondered for so long. I do know one thing...God is here for us all...during good times and BAD times and I will always give honor to Him. In the end, He is my true Father, my Savior, My best friend and Sticking with Him, I know I will never go wrong. Thank you...thank you..thank you...I will continue to read often. God Bless You and your family.....

Jo Ann/Denver