The next several blog posts will be difficult for some, if not many, victims of abuse to read. I know this because in conversation with victims, if ever I express some of what I am going to write here, it creates a struggle almost every time. And it will also be hard for some who were not abused, but have someone close to them who was victimized.
It is a battle I, too, have fought countless time and only now do I feel I can write it. If it enrages you, I understand. I felt the same rage for many years. But I cannot teach partial truth out of my own desire for comfort, or for anyone else’s comfort. I am far more interested in freedom, than comfort or a sense of personal justice.
So, if you are not ready to hear of forgiveness for perpetrators, or preachers/pastors who turn a blind eye, then I recommend you don’t read the next two posts.
I have heard many people utter harsh judgements that included the death sentence for perpetrators, and I understand them. It is not that I am so holy, so righteous and so saintly that I have never struggled with those judgements. I know the aftermath of sexual abuse. I know the hell my soul fought because of it. And I know the hell people closest to me fought because of it. I understand the evil.
But I also understand Jesus and what He came to do. I understand that He ‘gets’ my struggle and doesn’t ask me to pull myself up by my boot straps and present an image of being ‘untouched’ by sin and its impact. I understand that He cares for the soul of every human being. So, if I am truly lost in Him, if my identity is truly found in His love, then I want to extend His love and His grace to everyone. Even the perpetrators of the pain I suffered.
I will be writing several letters. The first one is to the perpetrator. The second to the preacher. The third to the victim. In no way is my intent to downplay the pain of victims by offering hope to the perpetrators. I was a victim. I was hurt that way. I understand the suffering you have gone through. But part of my healing has been in having compassion for the offenders. All offenders. And that compassion has set me free from the grip of the past in a whole new way.
The fourth and final letter is to our Saviour. He is impartial. All who come…. All…. that word that is best defined by itself. All who seek with a true heart… All who knock… All who ask. All who believe on Jesus, repent of their sins–regardless what those sins are–and call on the name of the Lord Jesus, our Saviour, God in the flesh, will be saved.
For that message I am truly grateful. If all were not welcome, if all could not repent, then Jesus would not be who He is. And that is the message in my letters to the perpetrator and the preacher. That Jesus loves them, and offers His grace and forgiveness, and I offer mine.
The letters are not necessarily all written based on my experience because I really don’t recall a time when I was innocent of sexual confusion in childhood. I write the letter to the perpetrator from the perspective of an innocent little girl, whose dreams are sweet until she is robbed of that innocence. That was not my story, but because of the impact of victimization in my early teens, and how much I lost then, I can imagine.
I pray that these letters will bring hope and healing to each of the people groups represented in them.
© Trudy Metzger
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