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#497468 - 04/09/16 07:07 PM Who is god (or is it God)?
WalkingSouth Offline

Registered: 08/30/05
Posts: 16269
Growing up I'd heard it said any number of times that like Jacob of old we need to wrestle with God in order to have a relationship with him. Jacob said while he and the angel were locked in an impasse of physical combat that neither one was winning, "I will not let you go except that you bless me."

I always had a problem with that. It never made sense to me how God was supposed to be a "God of love" could also be a god who put his children willingly through those kinds of mind games. Yes, I heard all the explanations about how we've got to fight for what's precious to us and all the rest of the mindless BS that unthinking, blind followers make up to excuse and explain away a lack of understanding about God. My life as a victim of physical, emotional, and sexual abuse was difficult enough to survive, let alone find any kind of spiritual connection with God, without trying to force him to notice me and bring me some kind of peace within my heart and mind.

So.... I went through my life with the above concept of God then my recovery started to happen and I learned something. I talked about God in individual and group therapy as well as in a recovery group I had joined at a local church. In all of those places I heard it said that our concept of who God is directly related to the kind of relationship we had with our parents or other caregivers or authority figures in our lives. For example, if our father was distant then our concept of God will naturally be that he is a distant God or if our parents were abusive then our concept of God will naturally be that he's an abusive God.

Well, hmmmm... That got my attention, so I got to thinking about it and guess what? They were right! I had a distant, abusive God, kind of like the God Jacob had when he was wrestling with the angel, and I discovered that I needed to rethink my concept of who God is. I've got to tell you, that made a huge difference in my life. Huge. God, to me, is not longer mean or angry or abusive or distant, or any of those things that Little Me experienced from those who were responsible for my wellbeing when I was growing up. God is a relational, loving, forgiving, nurturing, entity that adds substantive value, comfort, and grace to my life.
"Life's journey is not to arrive at the grave safely in a well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, totally worn out, shouting 'Holy Shit! What a ride!'" ~Hunter S. Thompson

#497515 - 04/11/16 09:10 PM Re: Who is god (or is it God)? [Re: WalkingSouth]
LinEar Offline

Registered: 06/02/15
Posts: 207
Loc: USA
Thanks, this was very inspirational for me.
Spotlight...get me out of this spotlight.

My silence is my self-defense.

#499140 - 06/09/16 12:20 PM Re: Who is god (or is it God)? [Re: WalkingSouth]
Bryan7601 Offline

Registered: 05/19/16
Posts: 21
Loc: GA
I'm trying to separate God from religion and just try to think of God as truth. When I think about the sexual abuse, the feelings and junk that come with it, I get overloaded. But it's the truth. It happened and it affected me. I want to live in truth and get better, to recover.
Taking 1 day at a time

#499142 - 06/09/16 01:22 PM Re: Who is god (or is it God)? [Re: WalkingSouth]
Makingprogress Offline

Registered: 04/14/16
Posts: 45
Loc: Washington
Bryan, I think of God as a person. More importantly and more risky for me is to see him as a Father. My father was not good in many categories but mainly because he was my primary abuser. It had literally taken decades to finally come to the place where I can separate my earthly father's character from God's character. Honestly, I am not sure I do it well even today but I do understand they are different in my head if not in my heart completely.

Seeing God as a person I can talk to, relate to, and know that he does love me has been life changing and extremely helpful in my healing from the abuse. Religion is a system of works and is good as far as it goes but without a healthy relationship with God, that's all it is. It can be therapeutic but seldom healing. In my experience, healing came to me from my very real and active relationship, or should I say fellowship with the living creator.

To know that he loves me, accepts me, forgives me and there is noting I can do to make him love me more or even love me less has brought a huge stability to me recovery. So I would encourage you to separate God from religion as an approach to healing. You can have religion and lose God and everything else. If you have God and know him, you will be religious and gain healing and everything else like, security, safety, peace, etc.

Just my thoughts
Life is a test of character, not skill. I know now it's not what happens to you, its how you deal with it.

#499167 - 06/10/16 07:30 PM Re: Who is god (or is it God)? [Re: WalkingSouth]
manipulated Offline

Registered: 09/25/14
Posts: 337
Loc: Great Lakes Wine Country
Originally Posted By WalkingSouth
God is a relational, loving, forgiving, nurturing, entity that adds substantive value, comfort, and grace to my life.


How does one go from the facts of child abuse, especially child sex abuse to a position of belief in a loving nurturing entity? Please understand I pose the question not to quarrel or cause anyone else to doubt. But because the God I once thought I knew as a loving, caring, nurturing protector, should have been omniscient and omnipresent during the time I was 11 to 15; Since I had "given my life to him and both publicly and privately diligently worshipped Him, studied His word since I was 10, approximately one year before the abuse started I was supposed to be "saved", "under His seal of protection" and "in the Book of Life". Yet the scoutmaster, who was also an elder in our church, successfully molested not only me but the rest of the troop - over and over and over again.

I need a conclusion other than the only scenarios that make sense to me:
1) God does not care, love or nurture and certainly does not protect; OR
2) Was using me and other young boys as pawns for His voyeuristic jollies (after all the perp's brother in law (another church elder and scout leader) never touched but always watched;
3) Was an active participant - perhaps calming/scariing us so no one ever told or restraining us so it could happen...

I thought I had peace when I believed and ignored the past; When the past could no longer be denied and ignored the Peace and the faith were both gone...

I know some will chime in that "He works all things for good even if you can't currently see it", "God did not cause the abuse sin and our fallen nature caused it" and "God gave man free will so He is not responsible for the scoutmaster's fallen nature"...BUT HE DID NOT PROTECT, HE DID NOT LOVE, HE DID NOT NURTURE EITHER.

Impossible right now for me to worship a coperpetrator or to adore anyone who with knowledge would allow abuse or fail to protect. That is why we prosecute teachers, doctors etc. for failure to report isn't it????
Feeling, Healing, Recovering.

#499171 - 06/10/16 11:35 PM Re: Who is god (or is it God)? [Re: WalkingSouth]
Makingprogress Offline

Registered: 04/14/16
Posts: 45
Loc: Washington
Manipulated, God was there all the time. I know because he was there with me through it all also. The thing is Good and Bad happen to everyone. We do not always have a life free from tragedy or abuse just because we belong to him. He sees things much differently than we do. I have had to remind myself it could have been much much worse than it was.

Do I love God only when things are peachy? Do I give up on him when the father he gave me chose to sneak into my room at night and abuse me? Do I blame him because my father could not control his base and perverted lusts? Crap happens to everyone and I have learned that it is not as important what happens to me as much as it is how I deal with it.

I am not trying to minimize your pain. I know my father hurt me very badly as I am sure your scout leader and perhaps others hurt you badly also. The blame however, goes where it belongs on the men who made the horrible choices. I realize this is not what you want to hear and I pray that eventually you and God may be able to reconcile over this.

Just my thoughts.

Edited by Makingprogress (06/10/16 11:37 PM)
Life is a test of character, not skill. I know now it's not what happens to you, its how you deal with it.

#501126 - 08/29/16 07:48 PM Re: Who is god (or is it God)? [Re: WalkingSouth]
Derdlecar Offline

Registered: 11/08/05
Posts: 1316
Loc: Ogden Utah, USA
For years, I hated a god that did not protect me. To this day, more than 50 years after the abuse, I still have trouble dealing with why it was aloud to happen. I just have to believe that one day, justice will be served. Abusers will receive their reward. Jesus said that it would have been better for a millstone to be tied to their neck and for them to be thrown into the sea than for them to hurt a child. What exactly Jesus has in mind for child molesters, I'm not sure. I also believe that the day is coming when I, along with other abuse survivors, well receive total and complete healing.

This is what the Gospel is about. This is what gives me hope.
If a man would get his life on track, he must first go back to the place where it was derailed.


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