While growing up, I believed that the only thing my pastor remembered about me (even up until I graduated from high school) was the story he would tell over and over again ending with the same line… “as I slowly drove by, there she was standing there. Sticking her tongue out at me”. Yes, this story was shared many times. But I was also remembered as the girl who dragged her boyfriends to church. Where did I go wrong, in my choices? I don’t think I went wrong. I believe it was allowed for my own benefit so that God could create a wondrous work in me and be glorified in all ways. So many turns in my life have been made because of choices, I have made. Some of those turns have also been made, not by my own doing. Today, we are going to talk about verbal mental abuse.
Please note: I am not a professional or an expert in this area, this is only my opinion and my life story. Abuse is abuse no matter what form it holds. Help is needed when abuse is present in your life.
How it started
It started slowly, making its way into my life by someone whom I love very deeply. In the beginning it was not apparent at all. Slowly it started to creep its way into my life. A word here, a word there, in arguments mostly. It wasn’t enough to even be recognized until one day, I felt the ramifications of years of abuse. What does abuse do to you? It lowers your self-esteem. It deems who you are. It constantly reminds you how you are never good enough. Almost like a frog sitting in a pot of water that is getting to the boiling point. Once the water is hot enough, the frog has been cooked. Never realizing the danger it was in. That is how abuse works as well. Once you recognize the abuse, the damage has already been done. Unlike the frog, there are steps that you can take, that will take that gushing wound and turn it into a scar.
The process for healing may be as slow as the process of the abuse. But the good news is that God has all things under control. His grace and mercy pours over those wounds. He will redeem, restore and He will be glorified. For there is nothing we can do in our power alone, only through the power of Christ.
“Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.” Hebrews 4:16 NIV
Pray – Call out to God. He already knows but you still need to go to Him. He is waiting on you, so that you will know that in your weakness His power is strong. Nothing you can do on your own power. It is His power that will make you strong. 2 Corinthians 12:8-10.
Prepare yourself – Get into the word of God through a Bible study that deals directly to your circumstances. Read books from godly authors that you trust on the subject matter. Whatever the case may be, seek out professional and godly counseling.
Apply – Live out what you have learned. In my case, I have learned how to use my words by saying “Stop, I will not allow you to degrade me or talk to me in that fashion.” and then turn and walk away. I have learned, the abuse I have received is not particularly about me, I’m just the one who is there to receive the consequences from the root of whatever is bothering the person.
Before I really started to grow in God, those words made deep, open, gushing wounds that I did not know how to fix. It pushed my self-esteem to an all time low. But as I have grown in God, they are becoming scars that I can hold dear. They are scars that remind me of how great God works in my life. The world may not understand why you allow such hurts to occur in your life, but that is ok because God uses these hurts so you can become salt and light in a cold dark world that is in need of God and His good news of salvation.
I can not stress this point enough, I am not a professional or expert in this field, this is my life story and how I have dealt with the hurts of verbal mental abuse. Please note that if you are in a position where the verbal mental abuse looks like it is heading into a direction of physical abuse, you need to get help. Do not wait another day.
God did not create you to have someone destroy you. You were created in His image and He does want to bless you.
In His Love, Crisi