From Anger to Forgiveness

How can rape victims go from anger to forgiveness?

Ephesians 4:31-32 "Get rid of all bitterness, rage, anger, harsh words, and slander, as well as all types of evil behavior. Instead, be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you."

     If anyone knows anger it's a person that has been raped or sexually abused.  I almost think that the word "anger" doesn't justify how we really feel inside.  I think back to when I felt rage inside because of what I went through.  I think the emptiness in my heart and soul was worse than the rage and anger building inside me.  My fear and brokenness was the root of my rage.  The enemy used that emptiness and fear to fuel my anger, as a result I made bad choices.  I lashed out and treated others poorly, then drank so I could escape my actions. I set out to punish and destroy anyone who had ever wronged me.  My anger had created a prison of chaos that I couldn't get out of. God says in Psalm 37:8, "Stop being angry! Turn away from your rage! Do not lose your temper- it only leads to harm." It only leads to harm is such a true statement!  In my anger it lead to me going out with bad men, doing drugs, drinking myself into a "coma", being dishonest and not treating people respectfully. God showed me a different way He said that forgiveness is the only way to freedom!  I humbled myself and asked God to forgive me of the way I had lived my life and to show me His way to freedom. My way wasn't working because my anger made my life worse.  God took me by the hand, held me why I cried and I gave Him my burden of pain, anger, hurt, bitterness, rage and brokenness.  That first step unlocked my prison door of chaos and I could feel freedom within my reach.  Now this was a much better solution and God held my hand the whole time.  God said, "You need to forgive others just as I have forgiven you."  In Mark 11:25 it says, "When you are praying, first forgive anyone you are holding a grudge against, so that your Father in heaven will forgive your sins too."  Now I am not saying it was easy because I am stubborn and like to think that my ways are better.  God has just showed me that His way is the only way.  Let me tell you once I made the choice in my heart to let the anger go and forgive...I was finally FREE!  That prison door flew open and I ran out as fast as I could.  I breathed in the fresh air of freedom and my soul leaped for joy.  God led me from anger to freedom through true forgiveness. That is what we strive for as survivors, to feel free, we need freedom in order to heal.  I challenge you to get your key to freedom, make the choice to get out of your prison of chaos.  Tell God what you want, He will show you the way and give you the key to free your soul.  Now I am not saying that this will be an easy road to travel on but it's the most rewarding.  I pray that all of you turn back on anger, embrace forgiveness and continue on your road to healing.  Remember God is there with you guiding you, He is holding your hand, and walks with you to freedom. 

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