The past month has been a whirlwind of transition in our family. Thankfully we have an amazing support system and our feet are planted in the Word of God. This has helped us to see how God is working in us to bring out the better version of who we were created to be. It has been an uphill struggle to overcome the voice of opposition but with God’s grace, valuable growth has been realized.
I have not talked much about my personal upbringing, but I was raised by a father who controlled, bullied and manipulated those in his circle of influence. The people who were unwilling or unable to go with the flow and fall in line were pushed out from his life. I grew up learning about the techniques used by bullies and knew the impact it had on people and vowed to never be like that. Sadly, our family has a rift due to our unwillingness to yield our will to his.
Shortly before I met Jake, God disrupted me to the point I knew I had some serious emotional issues that had to be brought before Him. I was finally able to admit my pain to myself and embrace the healing that came through entering into my wounded heart. With the help of counseling, I learned to identify the types of people that use manipulation and how to protect my heart in such a situation.
During this recent disruptive transition in our lives I was able to recognize (in the moment) when someone was using the same tactics to manipulate me and I was able to maintain self-control (with the help of God!) and I didn’t yield my personal identity to that person. When I stood my ground, the person switched from attempted manipulation to bullying and abuse. The words that were spoken against me were directly aimed at the place in my heart that has been attacked for my entire life. It was with precision that the enemy placed these lies that have been used against my heart into this certain situation. But I serve a God of grace, mercy and love. He has taught me my true identity is with Him. And the same is true about you!
It is so true that the enemy attacks us in the area of our greatest strength in an attempt to prevent us from offering our truest and most noble self to a broken world. This was truly an eye-opening experience in which I was tested by God while also being tempted by Satan. I chose God and His voice and His truth.
Of course I have had my moments of anger followed by moments of tears. My heart has still be affected by this (um, how could it not!), but the presence of God has done a miraculous work so I now am beginning to see myself as God sees me, not as Satan wants me to see myself.
Bullying is NOT okay. But like any other tragedy I feel that God can use it for His Glory. He can use this horrible situation to make you more the person you were created to be. And he can use you to show your kingdom the same thing.
My flesh wanted to fight back and meet the abuser with a spirited defense of my character, but I am learning to turn to God and pray. As I’m sure you have experienced, that is NOT an easy thing to do! But God is bigger than our current and past mistakes and always desires to usher us into a greater version of us than we were the day before.
If you are struggling with these same issues in your walk, please know you are not alone. If you feel like you have no one to contact, please reach out to us. We want to pray with you. We want to help you. You are not alone.
And friends, let’s reach out to our kingdom this week. If there are any unresolved issues with our friends, let’s resolve those. If you hurt, go to that person and have a face-to-face and heart-to-heart. We have enough hurt in this world without it coming from our kingdom.
Be blessed friends!