top of page

You Are Not Alone

As I wrote a post about the night my high school boyfriend punched me in the face and the frozen pack of vegetables I held on my cheek to help the bruising, a part of my heart hurt. At 53, it was hard to look back on myself at age 18. Hard to think about the emptiness I felt inside and the complete sense of being lost.


It was a powerful mix of emotions and I knew I

needed to go walk beside the river and spend time talking with God. As I walked and shared, I felt Him remind me that even though I didn’t realize it at the time, He was with me in all the moments that night. Even though I was hurt, I know God protected me from worse harm. That night, I sat there confused and, in a daze, but I know now, that

had I turned to God that night, He would have comforted me as He had so many nights before.


When I was growing up, my family went to church almost every Sunday. And I participated in our church’s youth group. I loved being at church. Something inside me came alive when I was there and learning about God and Jesus. But when I gave into the sexual pressure from Brock, I drew away from God. I felt like a hypocrite sitting in church. I stopped going to youth group and was grateful when we missed church.


Although I was pulling away, I had learned of God’s unconditional love. On my darkest nights, when I wondered why, “If my parents and boyfriend love me, did it feel like I was always in trouble?  Why did it always feel like someone was mad at me?” I knew they loved me, but I felt alone, sad, and distraught. I wondered why they couldn’t love me unconditionally as God did. I often cried myself to sleep crying out to God.


On the night Brock repeatedly punched my face, after it was over, I sat in his family room in the middle of the night completely numb.


The next day, still numb, ashamed, and moving through the motions, I tried to call in sick to work. I told my boss the same story I told my parents – someone thought I was a classmate and punched me before they realized their error. I worked in a daycare with children from 18 months to 2 years old. I told my boss I was afraid my black eye would scare the kids. She told me I had to come in, so I did.


Going to work turned out to be a gift.


The kids didn’t bat an eye, they didn’t ask me what happened or who punched me. We played, had snacks, and read books. I relaxed and was able to enjoy being in this environment, with people who didn’t judge me. When we sat in a circle, the littlest one came up to me, looked at me, and said, “You have a boo-boo.” Then she kissed the bruise on my cheek. Her kindness still brings tears to my eyes. For a while that afternoon I felt peace and love as I was accepted by those young toddlers simply for who I was.


But I know now it wasn’t just those toddlers there with me. God uses people in our lives, even toddlers, to show us His love.


There was a second gift that day. As each parent came to pick up their child, they saw my face and asked me what happened. I had to tell my lie at least 15 more times that day. These were people that I talked with almost every day. We always had pleasant conversations and they liked me. More than that, they trusted me with their kids. Telling them my lie was hard. They didn’t question me further, only expressed care and concern. Something about it began to chip away at the shame and guilt I was carrying. Something about it began to thaw my heart which was frozen in fear and pain.


Twenty years after I got out of that abusive relationship I returned to church and earnestly started to seek God. To learn about Him and who He is. I know without a doubt, He’s been with me every step of my life. In the highs and lows and everything in between. I’ve learned to listen for and to His voice and spend time with Him. God’s love, Jesus’s sacrifice for us, and the gift of the Holy Spirit is the greatest love there is.


If you don’t know God or Jesus, we’d be happy to tell you about Him.


And please know, if you’re feeling alone, afraid, or anything else, many people care about you, love you, and want to help – family members, friends, teachers, youth group leaders, school counselors, and others. Please know you’re not alone. Please ask for help.

Comments


Recent Posts
Archive
Search By Tags
No tags yet.
Follow Us
  • Facebook Basic Square
  • Twitter Basic Square
  • Google+ Basic Square
bottom of page