“I don’t want to hurt anymore!!”
The following is by a young woman who has been healing in the gentle and steady redemptive relationships of God’s people.
Dry. Parched. Lifeless.
The wild animals blazed through my delicate branches, stripping me of my bark. The wind came and went and my base toppled over. The blazing sun came out. With my roots exposed my soil dried out and my leaves withered, my branches dried. I was without hope. My pot was cracked. My branches on the ground. I wept. Cried out for help, but no aid came. For days, months, years I laid there. I withdrew inside and lay there. Lifeless.
One day, the Master of the garden came. He saw my broken leaves, my scarred flesh, and my exposed roots. He wept. He then scooped my little, broken body, that was so close to death and planted me by the stream. He nourished my roots, surrounding the soil around my roots with rich food. He propped me upright. Patiently he waited. He continued to tend to my needs, coaxing my mangled and pain-stricken self, to come out of hiding.
Flickers. No longer alone and neglected – hope flickered. Dare I hope? Dare I begin to trust? Time. I need time.
Time is what He gave me. Faithfully tending to my unresponsive arms, roots, and soil.
One day, without realizing it, a bud sprang forth. How? When? Where? Did this truly come from my dead self? The Master of the garden saw this and delighted in my new growth. He continued to care for me. Reviving me gradually with His tender care.
As time went on, new buds and shoots continued to appear. I could hardly recognize myself! I had new life! I had the hope of a future! I could barely believe it!
The Master of the garden saw this and was pleased, there was life in this little tree. But, now that there was life it was the appropriate season to begin shaping and molding. He painfully pruned the branches that were overburdensome and sucking the nutrients away from the parts of me that needed nutrients. My pain was difficult, my trust in the Master wavered. Why would He coax me out of my hiding from the pain and hurt and mend that brokenness, only to hurt me Himself?
Little did I know, He knew better than I and had a plan. As time went on He continued to prune me. I grew and grew. And I no longer feared His shaping tools.
Foreign and new to me, buds formed on my branches. Flowers bloomed and fragrant aromas filled the garden. He was delighted!
Fruit! Fresh, sweet fruit! My once barren branches THRIVED under the Master’s hand. All along He saw the beautiful and majestic tree I was designed to be and the fruit that I would bare!
And, fully in keeping with 2 Corinthians 1:3-4, God is mightly using her to bring this same comfort to others so deeply wounded.
Abuse and betrayal occur in relationships; healing and hope are found in Redemptive Relationships rooted in the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
Abuse and betrayal are redeemable. After all; God brought redemption into the world through abuse and betrayal.
Soli Deo Gloria!