"Spiritual abuse has the effect of making people extremely self-focused, preoccupied with doing things right and keeping happy those who are in places of authority. Recovery begins and continues with keeping our focus on God, what He has done, and who we are because of that. And in the context of open, grace-full relationships, this focus can be maintained." (Jeff Van Vonderen)
Recovery! I love what this quote says about recovery. We must keep our focus on God. Here are a few reminders of how much He loves us:
*God loves us. I John 3:1 says, "See how much the Father loves us, for He calls us His children, and that is what we are."
*God handpicked us. Ephesians 1:4 says, "Even before he made the world, God loved us and chose us."
*God comforts us. 2 Corinthians 1:3-4 says, "God is our merciful Father and the source of all comfort. He comforts us in all our troubles."
I believe if we keep our minds on how much God loves us and keep our minds on loving Him we will recover from the hurts. It will take time, but I trust it will happen. I believe we must also focus on reaching out to others. People are the only eternal thing there is and when we invest in people we are investing in eternity. When you use the word "invest" money automatically comes to mind, but I am not talking about money. I am talking about investing love, compassion, understanding, friendship, prayers, time, and of course money if needed. Too many times people are focused on what they can get for themselves - more money, houses, cars, etc. Life is short and one day all of those material possessions will be nothing. But the people you have reached out to and been nice to and loved, they will be in eternity. What's more important?
Matthew 6:19-20 says, "Don't store up treasures here on earth, where moths eat them and rust destroys them, and where thieves break in and steal. Store your treasures in heaven, where moths and rust cannot destroy. Wherever your treasure is, there your heart will also be."
God's treasures are His people. That's what He truly cares about. When we invest in His people it goes on record in heaven. A pastor I met recently told a great story about his life that I want to share. He was 17 years old and had only been saved a few months. He was sitting in church and heard a missionary talking about a bible school in India. The cost was $350 to send one young man to bible school for a year. There were many young men in India who wanted to attend, but they didn't have the money to go. He felt a tug at his heart and wanted to ask his dad to give the money to help. He went home that night and felt in his heart that God was telling him to give the money himself. $350 was a lot of money for a 17 year old boy, but he went to the bank and got the money. He took the money to the church to give to send one boy to bible school. He said he thinks about that young man often that he sent to school. He has never met him and doesn't even know his name, but he knows that whatever that young man has gone on to do - getting people saved in the country of India, sharing the Bible with many, starting churches, or whatever he has done - he was a part of and it will go towards his eternal account in heaven because he gave.
That's the kind of giving I want to do. I want to help missionaries who are feeding children. I want to send a boy from India to Bible school. I don't want to give to someone who is only interested in getting more stuff. I want to make a difference for eternity with my giving. I want to see people in heaven because of my giving. I'm so ready to quit hearing about people's possessions and hear what they are doing to make a difference in the lives of people for eternity. This is what it's all about!!!
One more thing I want to say, in the process of moving on it will also help to rely on friends who understand what you are going through. If a person hasn't been through a situation like this, it will be hard for them to understand. If you tried to explain it to some people they would think you were from Mars.
If you ever need a friend to talk to, please feel free to email me at email@example.com
I heard a great song today and here is a portion that touched my heart. This is a shout out to everyone who is free...
My chains are gone
I've been set free
My God, my Savior has ransomed me
And like a flood, His mercy reigns
Unending love, Amazing grace
It is great to be free! My relationship with God is sweet. My friendships are flourishing. I can truly say that what really matters in life is loving God and loving people.