Open the Door
The Lord has been nudging me to write about this topic and I've been tossing it around in my mind like a ping pong ball. "I don't really want to go there, Lord." I throw it across the table..."Do you trust me?" He throws it back..."It's just hard to talk about," I respond. "Do you trust me?" He never changes his response. I feel Him holding my heart even as I set out to write. I think I fear the...bigness...of this topic. The ripples it creates, the amount of lives this touches. So many people have the same raw, bleeding, awful wound that I carried for so long. I know why the Lord asks me to write about it. He asks me because I am free and the wound has healed. He needs those of us who have healed to extend the same healing to others. That is how his plan unfolds.
I have shared with you my journey of healing and tried to be completely honest and open with you. I have been afraid at times but I have trusted Jesus time and again to hold my heart and He has never failed me...and he won't start now. This wound was the deepest, most infected place of my life. I had no idea how much this affected every part of my life. Oh, but it did. Of all the wounds that Jesus has poured healing into, this one has taken the longest to heal. Maybe that's why I want to talk about it. If it hurt so bad for me, then it must hurt others with the same wound just as much. This wound is caused by betrayal...the deepest kind.
The betrayal of a Father.
I am hesitant to define what that betrayal looks like because while it has a definition in my own life, it is going to look very different if you have experienced it. What I do know is that the sting of betrayal feels the same for all of us. Whether you have suffered abandonment or abuse by your father, or if he was there but never had the time of day for you, that pain of betrayal feels very much the same. There are other layers that go along with whatever your experience is but at the root of that pain is the knowledge that you were betrayed by the very one who is called by God to protect you, to cherish you, and oh, it hurts so much...so very much.
It's funny, I thought I could write about this topic and just share "tips" or "how to overcome" but I am foolish. Jesus has asked me to pour myself - my story - out so others will find his healing power and the only way I can do that is to share from my own journey. I can only relate to anyone else's pain by sharing from the depths of my own pain. Even as I sit here writing, I feel the tightening in my heart because I can so clearly feel the affects of this wound in my life. Oh, Jesus has healed me and I'll get to that but the truth is that this wound, once healed, leaves a scar that will always be tender. What I am learning is how to let Jesus work through that tender spot. His strength works in that weakness in me and I love him for it.
For today, I just want to open the door. If you are reading this and have been betrayed in some way by your Father, today is the day for acceptance. Yes, acceptance. At some point, we have to accept the truth. I had to accept the truth.
He wasn't who he should have been.
He didn't protect me.
He hurt me, deeply.
I say those things now with absolutely no anger in my heart. There will always be sadness at what "should have been," but there is no anger. When I first accepted them, there was a whole lot of anger. Anger was my fortress. If those statements make you angry, make you want to cry, make you anything...it's okay. You gotta start somewhere....and that somewhere has to be the truth. We are all so good at trying to skirt the truth. We build mazes and tunnels, roadblocks and detours to try and avoid such painful truth, but it isn't until we look it in the face that we can be free. Even now, as Jesus has nudged me to share the truth I tried to create a maze around it. I'm so glad He doesn't work that way. I'm so glad He wants to dig through the muck and the mess of my heart instead of trying to cover it with religion or ritual.
I am living proof that you can heal from this wound. It's not too much to overcome. In fact, I find that the more there is to overcome, the more glory Jesus receives for all He can and does do. No one can do this for you though. My husband, as much as I love him and he loves me, couldn't fix this one for me. My closest friends, my mentors, not even my counselor could fix this for me. Only Jesus can reach down that deep.
I pray you will go on this little journey with me. I know if Jesus is asking me to write about it then there is going to be some surprise moments of healing for myself. He never stops healing. For today, I just ask that you face the truth. That is the only place to start. If you are fortunate to have found safety in your father's arms and don't have this wound in your own life, call him today and thank him. Hug him if you can. You have a great gift in him. For the rest of you...your healing is at hand if you will but open the door. I know that my God weeps over the fatherless. In fact he says in Psalms 68 that He is a father to the fatherless. He is your defender, your strong tower. He is the father that never betrays. He is near to the brokenhearted...even those who don't know they are brokenhearted. Were you to walk into his throne room today, you would feel that safety and assurance. Will you trust him with your pain? It's never too late. It doesn't matter how long you have lived with this open wound. What matters is that Jesus is ever ready, always ready, to offer you his healing power. Oh, and what power it is! There is no place in you that is too hardened or closed off to light that He cannot reach. Jesus will clear away the rubble with His own hands and the healing will come at his own expense....it did come at his own expense. Look to the cross today and believe that there is more for you than what is behind you. There is more...
Look to the cross and believe...
"A Father to the fatherless, a defender of widows, is God in His holy dwelling." Psalms 68:5