Yesterday was a particularly rough day.
I’ve been very misty-eyed this whole week dreading the upcoming Father’s Day…my first without a father. It seems everywhere I look there are ads for “great gifts to get Dad”, which bring me to tears every time. Then I got some very disappointing news at work and the whole building was in a foul temper. There were tears in every corner of the school. (Teacher tears, not students). The day went from bad to worse. For whatever reason, my students’ behaviors were exploding all around me (I teach low-income students with behavior disorders, not an easy task on the best of days. This was not the best of days). I ended the day with an altercation with an angry parent.
This was my mood as I left work, late as usual. Thank goodness for music! This song came on my mp3 player on the drive home. And it gave me pause and put things in some perspective. It made me think of you, dear readers. I’m sure it wasn’t written about rape, but so many songs can apply to our situation. I listened to it many times on the way home. It really touched my heart.
(MercyMe singing “Beautiful”. © 2010, MercyMe)
MercyMe is one of my favorite Contemporary Christian bands. I know many of my readers are not Christians. But the message can still offer encouragement, which we all so desperately need at times. Our experiences have made us forget the simple fact that we are beautiful, significant, and worthy of being loved.
Days will come when you don’t have the strength,
And all you hear is you’re not worth anything.
Wondering if you ever could be loved,
And if they ever saw your heart they’d see too much.
This verse is so perfect for a survivor to hear. This is exactly how I have felt in the past. My abuser told me over and over (and over) that I was stupid, too skinny, ugly, basically not good enough for him or anyone else. When I finally tried to find love, I couldn’t trust it. I knew that if people knew the truth about how very damaged I was (at least in my own eyes), they would be terrified of the “too much-ness” of it and would run.
Praying that you’d have the heart to fight,
‘Cause you are more than what is hurting you tonight.
For all the lies you’ve held inside so long,
They are nothing in the shadow of the cross.
We believe the lies our abusers told us. For me, I truly did hold these things in my heart for years until they became an accepted truth. My husband struggled so long trying to convince me that I was beautiful and desirable, intelligent and worthy. And it only takes a minute to undo all his years of work. For those of us who believe in God, this is what He tells us every day if only we are willing to listen. His grace can take away all of the pain we’ve endured, wash away all of the shame. If you are not a believer, please listen to me, your friends, your family, whoever truly loves you. We all know that you are worthy and special. You need to believe it too.
You were made for so much more than all of this.
You are Treasured, you are Sacred, you are His.
I could not say it more eloquently. You are sacred. You are a thing of wonder. God delights in your very existence. His plan for you didn’t include these horrible things and He wants you to know that you can rise above them.