38: God’s Grace & Healing After Sexual Assault
This is episode #2 in my series about sexual assault where we dive into the spiritual implications of it. Episode #1 can be found here!
This is a deep, complicated topic, so I brought in someone with experience in the trenches, Heidi Goehmann (pronounced gae-man! which I got wrong) author, social worker, and deaconess. Heidi has written and produced so much great material for all of us and you should definitely check her out at www.ilovemyshepherd.com, and on Facebook, and on Twitter! Also during the show we make reference to her Bible study Think on These, so here’s the link and you should check that out too.
We invite you to contact either of us or leave comments on the blog with more questions you have about this topic. We want to start a conversation for the benefit of all and would love to have your input as to what this should look like going further. More importantly, if you are hurting and looking for answers, please let us know and we can offer up what resources we can. Also if you have found good resources concerning this topic, share those in the comments or on social media for the benefit of the audience!
I’m going to offer more detailed shownotes than usual, because there is so much great information here I’d love for you to snag a little if you don’t get the chance to listen. I’m going with bullet point format. Here comes. Get ready.
Overarching question we are sorting through:
How do these dark experiences impact us and intersect with/reflect the hope of Christ?
- The struggle of shame. We all suffer in some way.
- The brokenness of sin seems to infiltrate our womanhood especially and create an unhealthy internal dialogue.
- Wouldn’t it be great if we could see ourselves and our brokenness the way Christ does?
- Why aren’t we talking about this stuff? How do we get painful topics to the table?
- It’s not just sexual assault: marriage struggles, parenting, disabilities, mental health
- We need to share our own experiences and
- Recognize the discomfort/pain of sin
- Healing starts with addressing the topic
- Putting light on the pain and sin because LIGHT OVERCOMES DARKNESS
- One of Satan’s goals is to keep this stuff in the dark
- Having conversations: “Here are my struggles, what are yours?” – bookends
- Treatment is important but community can be equally important
- Our natural reaction is to hide just like Adam and Eve did
- God doesn’t love us any less when our sin is revealed
- We are all asking God why he allows sin and brokenness, but especially when we’ve been violated we wonder: Why does God allow this? Why wasn’t I protected?
- Give people a space to voice that question: what happened here?
- We have to recognize sin is allowed here, we hate that, and often admit “I don’t know.”
- Sit in the pain together
- Christ has the victory. He does save.
- God is so much bigger than us and he sees everything differently than we do.
- Sin sometimes happens TO us not by us.
- Still CONFESSION is powerful
- Confession can mean “vocalizing” something
- He CAN heal. It is mysterious.
- Confession helps get it out in the open. Harder for Satan to use against me.
- Relationship is powerful
- Psalm 56:8 You keep track of all my sorrows. You have collected all my tears in your bottle. You have recorded each one in your book.
- 2 Corinthians 1:3-5 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. For as we share abundantly in Christ’s sufferings, so through Christ we share abundantly in comfort too.
- Sexual sin is really hard for us to deal with.
- Satan is attacking us PHYSICALLY
- Our bodies are our temples where the Holy Spirit resides
- That’s how much he values us!
- When our bodies are invaded it complicates our relationships with ourselves and our God
- Sin ripples
- Impacts are exponential in many areas of our lives
- This is why continual conversation is necessary
- Triggers are real
- Share the struggle. Voice your response.
- Natalie Greenfield – Twitter link. She is engaging in conversation about how sexual assault in one’s past impacts marriage.
- God brings healing DAILY and ETERNALLY
- Romans 12:1 – We offer him a living sacrifice,
- knowing we are not enough, but here is what we DO have.
- He showers down joy and comfort in response
- Isaiah 61:3 – beauty from ashes
- Attention everyone: Hold tight to each other.
- Relationships can be so complicated. Don’t give up on them and those relationships.
- Pursue each other as God has pursued you.
If you have suggestions for resources, questions, or something to contribute to the conversation, please share in the comments, find us on social media, or send an email!
(links are at the top and bottom of this post)
Check out blog posts on www.shefindstruth.com!
Production Notes · music – Spoke in the Wheel by Electric Tangerine Audio at http://audiojungle.net/user/ElectricTangerine · Vocal Introduction by Kena Clark · Intro/Outro Production by Bradley Hofbauer