April 29, 2015

Victims of Abuse

Written by Wisdom Hunters

Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – April 29, 2015

Now Dinah, the daughter Leah had borne to Jacob, went out to visit the women of the land. When Shechem son of Hamor the Hivite, the ruler of that area, saw her, he took her and raped her. Genesis 34:1-2

My heart goes out to those who have suffered abuse: sexual, physical and emotional. The inflicted pain creates shame, sorrow and sadness deep within the soul and psyche. My friend recently told of her experience as a young teenager. She trusted a “father like” figure only to be sexually violated by this sick predator. She struggled to get out of the situation and get help. Once free from this man’s exploitation, my friend began to be freed from the fallout of another’s sin. She found Jesus and by His grace began to heal. Abuse victims need God and expert care.

Dinah was born to Leah, the wife thought lesser of by her husband Jacob. Perhaps Dinah did not receive the full blessing and love from her father, so she felt vulnerable in the presence of men. One day as Dinah was visiting friends, the son of the local ruler—Shechem—raped her. He leveraged his dad’s position of power and authority to take advantage of an innocent maiden. Shechem’s father tried to reason with Jacob and his sons by offering a solution involving financial remuneration and marriage. This only inflamed the family’s rage and led them to the wrongful response of deception and murder. Perpetrators are to be judged by God and the laws of the land.

“But if you fail to do this, you will be sinning against the Lord; and you may be sure that your sin will find you out” (Numbers 32:23).

Do you know someone who has been abused? If you suspect a friend is struggling under a heavier burden than every day stress, seek to understand their pain and shame. Directly ask them if they are being or have ever been abused. Assure your deeply wounded friend of your confidentiality, comfort and acceptance. Offer more support than advice. Babysitting, cash, a place to live and a Christian support group can give much needed help and hope. Recovery from abuse is a journey of grace, forgiveness and healing. So walk patiently together with Jesus.

If you have been abused, re-learn how to be loved by your heavenly Father and people, and how to love yourself. The tender love of your precious Savior Jesus wants to touch the very essence of your soul. Weep in His arms as you grieve your loss and receive His comfort. Invite trusted friends into your pain as they lovingly listen and pray with you. Shared hurt invites healing. Love yourself right where you are—not where you feel you need to be one day. Be gentle with your heart. Let your mind rest from self condemnation. Grace maintains no regrets.

“Above all things have intense and unfailing love for one another, for love covers a multitude of sins [forgives and [a]disregards the offenses of others]” (1 Peter 4:8, AMP).

Prayer: Heavenly Father, I receive Your love and the love of friends, so I now freely love myself.

Related Readings: Psalm 42:8; Proverbs 10:2; Hosea 14:4; Romans 15:30; 1 Peter 1:22; James 5:20

Post/Tweet this today: Recovery from abuse is a journey of grace, forgiveness and healing. #abusevictim #wisdomhunters

Additional Resource: 4 minute music video- David Crowder Band- How He Loves

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© 2015 by Boyd Bailey. All rights reserved.
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