My Childhood Villains Don’t Define Me
I grew up in church, reciting the following verse…
“Live clean, innocent lives as children of God, shining like bright lights in a world full of crooked and perverse people.” Philippians 2:15
I was often confused though, because for a substantial part of my childhood the words, clean and innocent, were not words I was able to connect with. I spent many years being sexually abused by people that I trusted, people that held a place of authority in my life and people who threatened to do even more damage if I were to tell.
So, I didn’t tell.
I kept still and I kept quiet.
While I was keeping quiet I learned that the world was full of crooked and perverse people. At such a young age, I’m not sure I used the words, crooked and perverse, but I certainly used words like, mean and scary.
Today, I’m all grown up and I’ve reconciled the fact that I can connect with the words, clean and innocent, because what happened to me, as a child, wasn’t my fault. What happened to me was a result of people much older than myself, choosing to mix together evil and perversion for the sake of pleasure and control.
My innocence was robbed in more ways than one.
The same can be said about so many of us.
It’s a long, rough, curvy, uphill both ways, kind of path that we are facing. It’s a journey many of you have faced, so you understand.
By the time I began to deal with my childhood pains, it was too late for me to confront the villains of my past, so what I did, subconsciously, was make the innocent people in my life and the faithful God that I love, pay for the guilty.
How horrible, I agree! If I would have recognized what I was doing, I assure you, I wouldn’t have done it. Sadly, it took many years before I was able to see where I had mistakenly attached consequences to innocent people. By the time I could see clearly, many of the innocent people had walked away, understandably so! Some of the people stayed around, but the relationships I have with them are covered in scars.
But One person hung around even though I had put the majority of my anger, confusion, demand, fear and mistrust on Him. I laid all the blame, all my hatred, all of my distorted views on this amazing God, and yet He stayed put. He never threw His arms up in frustration, He never turned on one heel and stomped off, He never did anything but hold me as I beat up on Him. He held my tears and He promised me that He would return to me everything the evil one took, plus more.
I return to the comforting chest of my Jesus many times, as horrendous memories pop into my mind, or natural consequences that come from being sexually abused, rise up, causing me problems as an adult. Every time I run into His comfort, He is there.
Because He is there with healing for my pain, I am free to slowly but confidently live a clean, innocent life as a child of God, shining like a bright light in a world full of crooked and perverse people.
Whatever your struggle or whatever it is that keeps you from living a clean and innocent life among a world full of mean and scary people, take it to Jesus and let Him do to you, what He so victoriously did to me.
So here is my bottom line…
My childhood villains DON’T DEFINE ME nor do they define the calling that God has put on my life!
Vicki Bruce is a wife & a mom to four semi-adult children.
A perfect day for Vicki begins at 2:30am with a cup of coffee, a strawberry Poptart & her Bible.
Vicki’s devotional, I Am HIS, is expected to be released in December of 2015
followed by, Worthy & Free…Who Me? which will release in the spring of 2016.