If you’ve been following my last few posts, you’ve probably noticed that I’ve been writing a lot about sexual abuse. Maybe you’re wondering why.
A few weeks ago, I found myself asking “Why?” What is the real motive behind my writing about sexual abuse? Suddenly, I felt compelled by the Holy Spirit to write. So I sat down at the computer. Within a few minutes, a poem was formed.
The Little Girl*
Once there was a little girl,
With pure and childlike trust.
But one day this girl became
An object of one’s lust.
He told her she was pretty;
That what he did was love.
How that must have hurt the heart
Of God in heaven above.
The little girl believed him.
Even though this “love” hurt.
It made her feel so yucky,
And like a piece of dirt.
The pain became unbearable.
She blocked it from her mind.
It lay there many years until
Jesus she did find.
He beckoned her to come to Him.
She came with shame and fears.
Her dress was dirty and torn
Her eyes were filled with tears.
“May I carry all your pain?”
His voice so gently said.
“I’ve been waiting all these years.
It was for you I bled.”
She began to cry great heaving sobs.
Her chest hurt with the pain.
She lifted her eyes to His
And saw they held no blame.
“Yes, I’ll give it all to you,”
She uttered in reply.
And so He lifted all the pain.
She felt like she could fly.
“This is for you,” He said with love.
And handed her a dress.
“This is what I think of you-
Pure, clean and spotless.”
And so the little girl did dance
While Jesus held her hand.
And happy circles they did make
Their feet upon the sand.
I know this little girl quite well.
This little girl is me.
Redeemer, Saviour, Healer, Friend –
For you, He’ll gladly be.
This is my “why”.
I cannot be silent about the redemption my Saviour has brought me. I refuse to stifle His glory by being quiet when He, in His mercy, touched my shattered heart and literally healed my broken body, soul and spirit.
I realize that sexual abuse is a subject that is not culturally acceptable to talk about in some Anabaptist circles. This saddens me, because there are so many people, who, like me, carry horrible secrets with them for years and have no idea how to rid themselves of them. So they struggle. They cover them up and try to forget. But it doesn’t work.
It never does. I’ve been there, and it’s not a fun place to be.
Just a few short years ago, I felt like no one knew how to help me find peace and healing. I wondered if I was just a hopeless case.
And then, I met Jesus. He changed everything. Not in one day, because He is still healing me. Has the journey been easy? No. Is it worth the pain? YES. A thousand times, yes.
Do I understand or know why I was abused and raped? No. God never answered Job’s questions of “why” either.
But there’s one thing I am choosing to believe: God has a purpose for everything. Even for a little girl who was brutally abused at the hands of men who professed to be sons of God.
I don’t know exactly why it happened to me. My husband reminds me often: “Ann, God doesn’t waste pain.” Sometimes God uses pain to help others find healing.
And so, I want to be a voice for those little boys and girls who find themselves wondering if they are a hopeless case. My heart aches for them. I long to take their hand and lead them to the foot of the cross to meet my Friend, Jesus.
The truth is, no one is exempt from needing Jesus and His redemption in their lives.
Brothers and sisters, this, and this only, is my “why.”
*This poem is dedicated to my dear husband, Ben. Thank you, Sweetheart, for leading me to Jesus, helping me forgive, and showing me over and over what love really is. I love you and I trust you.
**Photo credit: Ali Brown Photography