Walking With God in a Park

Credit: JC

Whenever I have a hard time hearing from God or need additional time with Him after morning prayers and reading, I head to a park. I am blessed to be able to choose from a number of parks near me. I look for parks that are not crowded and are more “natural” versus ones designed for people who want pavement. I bring ear buds and a playlist filled with worship music so I can tune into worshiping Him while walking in His creation. I typically will have an ear bud in one ear with the music while listening to sounds around me with my other ear.

If you do not have a park near you, find a quiet and safe place to put both of your ear buds in and listen to praise music. Close your eyes and just focus on Him. The goal is to draw closer to God, not necessarily be in a park or surrounded by nature – unless those help you draw closer. James 4:8 says, “Come close to God, and God will come close to you” (NLT).

On a recent walk with Him in the park, here are things I heard and things He showed me. I pray these insights bless you.

Do not allow fear to rob you of seeing God already at work

Are there times that you learn of an activity or a ministry and you are filled with joy just thinking about the opportunity to get involved? That is your passion being illuminated by God already at work. Your immediate reaction is excitement, energy, and a desire to get involved.

Soon after that, however, the fear sets in: How would this work? I have no time. I would not know anyone there. What if I don’t know what I am doing?

When we feel God leading us into an assignment or a task, it will most likely be scary. When we are scared of something, it causes us pause, to proceed with caution or rethink what we are doing. Being scared is normal when we are stepping into something new or something that only God can achieve that we cannot do in our own strength. This is different than fear.

Fear is defined as a potentially paralyzing emotion caused by impending danger, evil or pain, whether the threat is real or not. Fear can result in us not doing what we feel passionate about or led to do. Fear is the tool of the enemy. We must trust in Him to equip us for His calling.

Sometimes, trees fall down in winter but they are replaced with fresh growth in the spring

When one thing is torn down in your life, He will raise new life from it – in His timing. When one opportunity is gone, He sends something else. We just have to always keep our eyes open. While you are in a season of waiting, use this time to work on you. This season is a once in a lifetime opportunity when you will be the age you are, have these specific people around you, and be in your current situation.

Listen through the daily noise of life, and you will find Him in unexpected places

In the park, right next to a major highway, was a little waterfall. It is easy to be focused on the circumstances around us, for they are in our faces and demand our attention. God is present everywhere, but tends to be a whisper.

“‘Go out and stand before me on the mountain,’ the Lord told him. And as Elijah stood there, the Lord passed by, and a mighty windstorm hit the mountain. It was such a terrible blast that the rocks were torn loose, but the Lord was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake. And after the earthquake there was a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire there was the sound of a gentle whisper.”
1 Kings 19:11-12 NLT


What if you don’t hear from Him? There have been times in my life when I was desperate to hear from Him for a looming decision with an expiring timeline. I had been on my knees praying James 1:5: “If you need wisdom, ask our generous God, and he will give it to you. He will not rebuke you for asking” (NLT). I poured out my heart to Him asking why I had not heard, despite trying many things and praying those verses.

Then I heard, “You have heard from Me. You have the Bible.” This is why it is crucial to keep reading the Word. If not already, you should make it a daily habit. If you think you don’t have enough time, start with a verse a day and slowly increase from there. Keep praying. Keep worshiping Him. Keep doing the last thing you heard Him tell you to do. The enemy will attack you and want to discourage you from obeying God. Remain vigilant. Enlist prayer partners. Stay focused on Jesus. Let Him bend you, break you, and mold you into who He created you to be.

“Overwhelming victory is ours through Christ, who loved us.”
from Romans 8:37 NLT

Seventy Times Seven

My former spouse made choices that unfortunately impact the lives of my children to this day. It is because of these choices that we cannot have “normal” experiences. There are huge barriers for us complicating what should be everyday tasks. Things that others can take care of in 30 minutes take my children weeks and sometimes months if the government has to be involved to address the barriers. I have to keep forgiving my former spouse every time one of these incidents arises as the enemy works hard to fill me with resentment. I can now understand when Jesus says to forgive someone “seventy times seven.”

“Then Peter came to Jesus and said, ‘Lord, how many times may my brother sin against me and I forgive him, up to seven times?’ Jesus said to him, ‘I tell you, not seven times but seventy times seven!'”
Matthew 18:21 – 22 NLV

When I first read these verses, I thought, “That is a lot of forgiveness for one person, and why would I be such a ‘welcome mat’ to allow that person to keep sinning against me?” The Lord has since shown me that forgiveness may not be one specific moment in time and then it is done. The enemy will continue to try to bring up what has been done to us to cause us to retreat to places of unforgiveness. We must take those thoughts captive.

Forgiving someone does not mean condoning or agreeing with the behavior. Forgiving means shedding our chains of resentment versus carrying them around when we do not forgive. I need to forgive my former spouse literally every day and sometimes multiple times a day. As a result, I have forgiven him hundreds of times. For clarity, I have taken every step necessary to protect myself and my children from further harm; Jesus does not condone anyone repeatedly hurting anyone.

Credit: Snow

If constantly forgiving those who hurt us is not enough, we have an enemy who knows exactly how to attack us. Recently, I lied because I felt like I had to protect my child from my former spouse. Lies are a sin, and all sin is a statement to God indicating, “I do not trust You to make this work.” In the moment, I thought the lie was the best way to protect my child. After the lie occurred, I confessed it to God and thought about why I lied. One thought was that if my former spouse had not done the things he did, I would not have had to lie. But that thought is, in fact, another lie. It is irrelevant what my former spouse did; God is capable and powerful enough to protect my child from anything. And I did not “have” to lie. None of us “have” to lie. We choose to lie because we think it is easier, better, faster, etc. Perhaps sometimes it is easier to lie, but followers of Jesus are not called to take the easy path.

“Since Christ has suffered in His body, we must be ready to suffer also. Suffering puts an end to sin. You should no longer spend the rest of your life giving in to the sinful desires of the flesh. But do what God wants as long as you live in this world.”
1 Peter 4:1–2 NLV

Following Jesus can result in suffering of all kinds. However, whether it is forgiving someone 490 times or trusting God even when a lie is easier, we are to obey what God commands us to do. While any suffering is limited to our brief time in the earthly realm, our eternal reward for following Jesus is His love. No matter what the enemy or former spouses or other dark influences may try to throw at us, we fight from victory.

“Can anything ever separate us from Christ’s love? Does it mean he no longer loves us if we have trouble or calamity, or are persecuted, or hungry, or destitute, or in danger, or threatened with death? (As the Scriptures say, ‘For your sake we are killed every day; we are being slaughtered like sheep.’) No, despite all these things, overwhelming victory is ours through Christ, who loved us.”
Romans 8:35-37 NLT

The Answer to Every Question Is Three Words

Throughout our lives as Christians, we will endure many trials and blessings. Times of blessing are, of course, easy to walk through. The potential hazard during times of blessing is forgetting to thank God. We must recall that He provided all we have, and we should not slip into a sense of self-righteousness or thinking that we provided all we have.

It is during the trials, times of suffering, times of silence, and times of confusion, that we need answers. Depending on what we are walking through, our questions can range from “Why, God?” to “When, God?” to “How, God?”

The enemy will use those times of trial, silence, or confusion to try to get us to doubt God. To doubt His promises, to doubt His past provision, or to doubt that He will once again provide. The enemy knows that when we feel the farthest from God is the exact time that He is the closest and just waiting for us to draw near. James 4:8 says, “Come close to God, and God will come close to you.” The enemy will show up in full force when we are going through hard times.

Job and Joseph are just two examples in the Bible of people under attack but standing firm in their faith for God. Sometimes reading those chapters of the Bible does not help me. I feel like I am not a Job – I could not drop to the ground in worship if God were to wipe out all my children in one swoop, like Job did (Job 1:20). I truly do not think I could do that. Perhaps I could get to that place with time, prayer, and help.

However, in my journey, I have realized that there are three words that we need to insert as the answers to our questions for God. So, in those moments when we feel that the examples in the Bible are not encouraging, and God is silent, and the enemy is attacking, what answers do we have to the questions and hurt swirling in our minds?

I offer three answers, each with three words.

  • “It is well.” No matter what happens to us or our loved ones, our souls will spend eternity with Jesus because we believe He is the Son of God. There are many, many awful things we will endure in this life – but ultimately, our destination is eternity. We need to keep our eyes on eternity, and if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart He rose from the dead, you will be saved (Romans 10:9). Your soul is safe for all eternity, and it is well.
  • “Thy will, Lord.” There are going to be hurtful, hateful, senseless things that happen. On this side of Heaven, we will not always understand why things happen. But we know that He works all things together for the good of those who love him and are called according to His purpose (Romans 8:28). We simply cannot understand all that God knows, and it is with this perfect knowledge from generations past and future that He makes the decisions He makes to form His perfect will for us. We will doubt God, we will say this does not make sense, and it will never make sense, and that very well may be true, but we are to “trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding” (Proverb 3:5). Surrendering to His will is what is best for us, whether we can see that now or not.
  • “God loves me.” There will be times of silence. We will feel far from God, or we will be passionately seeking God daily in prayer without an answer for a decade or more. This does not mean He does not hear our prayers. Psalm 116:2 says, “Because he bends down to listen, I will pray as long as I have breath!” We may receive no response because the timing is not right, or His answer will be different than we seek. However, in those times, we must never doubt His love for us. He sent His one and only Son to die for us while we were still sinners (Romans 5:8). God is our loving Father (Romans 8:15).

Cling to one or all of these answers when the enemy comes for you. Nothing the enemy says is true, for he is the father of all lies. These answers above are Truth. They are promises in the powerful Word of God.

Only God holds your soul (Matthew 10:28), only God is in control of the plan for your life (Jeremiah 29:11), and only God has loved you enough to die for you (John 3:16).

Credit: JC

God Sends Us “Earthly Angels”

beach
Credit: JC

I grew up in a very dysfunctional and abusive house. My biological father left when I was a few weeks old. Sadly, I know there are a lot of people in the same boat – they were raised in families that did not at all represent God’s design of family. We live in a sin-filled world, but God sends us what I call “earthly angels” to help us when our lives are full of hurt.

Humans are not angels; they are separate creations. There are many verses that make it clear humans are not and do not become angels. One example is Psalm 8:4–6: “What is mankind that you are mindful of them, human beings that you care for them? You have made them a little lower than the angels and crowned them with glory and honor. You made them rulers over the works of your hands; you put everything under their feet” (NIV). However, I use the term “earthly angels” to describe humans, sent by God, who step into our lives to lead us closer to Him.

My uncle became the father figure I needed as I grew up. He was there for me when I was sick and carried me when I could not walk. He drove my mom and I back and forth to many Children’s Hospital therapy appointments for months on end. He was there when my heart was broken; he was there to teach me how a man should treat a lady. He showed me unconditional love when I messed up. He walked me down the aisle the day I got married. I believe God placed my uncle in my life as my “earthly angel” to fill the gaps of not having an earthly father present.

My uncle went to Heaven last night. His health had been declining swiftly over the past few months, so his transition to Heaven was not unexpected. It certainly hurts when you lose someone you love deeply, but I will say there is comfort in knowing you will see the person again in Heaven. When there is faith in Jesus, there is the promise of eternity with Him.

John 3:16 says, “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life” (NIV). “Whoever” is a huge, beautiful word. It does not matter WHO you are, WHAT you have done, WHEN you did it, or HOW you did it – you will have eternal life through your belief in Jesus.

My uncle and I shared this belief, so that is how I know I will see him again. We also have the comfort that our loved ones are no longer in pain. There is no pain in Heaven. Our loved ones can dance again and sing again and talk again. They are freed from the chains of hurt, pain, and death that had them in their grip on Earth. Revelation 21:4–6 states, “‘”He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death” or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.’ He who was seated on the throne said, ‘I am making everything new!’ Then he said, ‘Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.’ He said to me: ‘It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. To the thirsty I will give water without cost from the spring of the water of life'” (NIV).

My uncle is with me; I talk to him and look toward Heaven when I think of him. While I am very sad to have lost my “earthly angel”, I know he is freed from pain. I also know that God works all things together for the good of those who love Him (Romans 8:28).

My uncle’s children are adults, and they are atheists. I pray God will use this pain to save their souls. All they have to do is believe in Jesus as the Son of God. Acts 2:21 says, “And everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved” (NIV).

“And now, dear brothers and sisters, we want you to know what will happen to the believers who have died so you will not grieve like people who have no hope. For since we believe that Jesus died and was raised to life again, we also believe that when Jesus returns, God will bring back with him the believers who have died.”
1 Thessalonians 4:13-14 NLT

We will see our loved ones again; whether we arrive in Heaven or the Lord returns while we are still on Earth, we will see them again! It is healthy to grieve, and we should grieve, but grieve with hope. Brothers and sisters, we will see our loved ones again through Jesus Christ!


Father in Heaven,

We lift up all who have lost their “earthly angels,” those people who change our lives for the better, those people who love us incredibly, those people who lead us to You, those people who help us meet You through their lives.

We thank You for Jesus and the incredible promises of eternity that we have in Him. Lord, please help those of us still on Earth to cling to Your promises when the hurt rushes in. Please remind us we can still talk to our loved ones. They are still with us – just in a different way. Please help us to grieve and to grieve with hope in Jesus.

In the Almighty Name of Jesus we pray.

Amen

Just One

When we share the gospel, we have no idea how far reaching those words can become. We are doing what Jesus commanded us to do (Matthew 28:18-20). And by speaking the words of God to another, we claim this promise:

“The rain and snow come down from the heavens and stay on the ground to water the earth. They cause the grain to grow, producing seed for the farmer and bread for the hungry. It is the same with my word. I send it out, and it always produces fruit. It will accomplish all I want it to, and it will prosper everywhere I send it.”
Isaiah 55:10-11 NLT

We know that when someone turns to Jesus, all of Heaven rejoices:

“In the same way, there is more joy in heaven over one lost sinner who repents and returns to God than over ninety-nine others who are righteous and haven’t strayed away!”
Luke 15:7 NLT

This is in the spiritual realm, which the Scriptures tells us some things about, but we will not completely understand this side of Heaven. What we do know is that when something changes in the spiritual realm, our earthly lives are impacted.

Think about it. How were you before you met Jesus? Different, right?

“This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun!”
2 Corinthians 5:17 NLT

Credit: JC

Have you ever seen someone’s life changed after they met Jesus? I have been blessed to see this new creation many times, to see the veil pierced right before my eyes: that moment when someone understands who Jesus is and why He came and that we are forgiven, no matter what we have done.

I have been blessed to see convicted murders and drug dealers just break down and sob uncontrollably when they understand they are forgiven. When they understand that they are loved more than they can comprehend. The love of Jesus enters us and breaks us in a good way. When we have the Holy Spirit poured out on us, it is an incredible realization of the way the universe works, there is good and bad. There is an entire other realm. The spiritual realm is real, whether we want to acknowledge it or not. So why not use that knowledge to bring blessings here on Earth?

Just one example of this in the Bible is Saul. He was a murderer (Acts 8:1), met Jesus (Acts 9:7), and gave his life to telling others about Jesus (Acts 9:15).

From a personal perspective, I can share many, many stories about how a change in the spiritual realm rains down onto Earth. I have seen someone who was lost and hurt “beyond repair” encounter Jesus and after they understood who He is and dedicated their life to Him, my entire life changed through our friendship.

I have seen “tough” men who think they do not need Jesus eventually realize their desperate need after hearing the Good News many times. There is one gentleman in particular who runs a car repair shop, and he rejected Jesus time after time. Eventually, he realized how broken he is (as we all are) and accepted Jesus as his Lord. He has since dedicated the proceeds of his shop to developing an entire ministry in a third-world country that has touched thousands of lives.

I could go on and on. The bottom line is this – it just takes one. One person like you to tell one person who needs to hear the Truth for Heaven and Earth to be impacted. We say sometimes that we want to change the world, make it a better place – I completely agree.

Then tell just one about Jesus. Encourage that one to tell just one.

Each week, could there be just one person that you tell?

Guest Blog: The Path To Healing After Abuse

By Esther

When abuse occurs, tell someone immediately please. If that person does not believe you, try another person – please. I know this is very hard, it takes tremendous courage. Please do not do what I did and stay silent. Remember that we have the Holy Spirit in us who raised Jesus from the dead. In Him, we can do this! He wants you to begin the journey of healing. If you are not comfortable telling anyone in your life, The Victim Connect Resource Center lists many hotlines that are situation-specific (children, military, women, teens, rape, domestic violence, trafficking, etc).

After you tell someone that listens, find time and give yourself space to truly understand and process that what happened to you does not define you. What does define you is how you react to what happened to you. Pray a lot. Pray specifically. Find a prayer partner to pray for you. This journey to healing takes time and there are days when you do not want to or feel like praying. This is where you need at least one prayer partner who will pray for you faithfully daily.

Realizing that God does love you, despite what happened, was also a journey for me. I had index cards with prayers and verses to help me when I needed reminders. Examples include:

“May you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is. May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully. Then you will be made complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from God.”
Ephesians 3:18-19

You are created in His image (Genesis 1:27). You are precious in His sight.

“Long ago the LORD said to Israel: ‘I have loved you, my people, with an everlasting love. With unfailing love I have drawn you to myself.'”
Jeremiah 31:3

“And this hope will not lead to disappointment. For we know how dearly God loves us, because he has given us the Holy Spirit to fill our hearts with his love. […] But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners.”
Romans 5:5,8

“Can anything ever separate us from Christ’s love? Does it mean he no longer loves us if we have trouble or calamity, or are persecuted, or hungry, or destitute, or in danger, or threatened with death? (As the Scriptures say, ‘For your sake we are killed every day; we are being slaughtered like sheep.’) No, despite all these things, overwhelming victory is ours through Christ, who loved us. And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
Romans 8:35-39

The prayer I pray:

“Lord, I submit every corner of my life to You. Show me what I have yet to submit to You. Help me to release my need for this to feel fair or to see (him/her/them) punished. Rip out any bitterness in me. Show me what I can learn and how to grow closer to You through this. I need your peace. Help me to heal and forgive. Rain down on me the powerful healing of the Holy Spirit. Replace my pain with a focus on You and Your love. In Jesus’ precious name, amen.”

When I first started to pray this prayer, I meant only a few of the words. I begrudgingly prayed it every morning. I did not want to forget or let the ones who hurt me “off the hook.” I had to keep reminding myself that God will take revenge. I needed to focus on His love for me and who He wanted me to become as a result of all this. I had to believe that this was not my fault. I also had to see that dragging around unforgiveness was only robbing me of the abundant life that God came to bring to me. In John 10:10, Jesus says, “The thief’s purpose is to steal and kill and destroy. My purpose is to give them a rich and satisfying life.” As for the people who hurt me, I can tell you that they did not care what they did to me. They never thought about it again; I was the one who was caught in my cycle of reliving it and not healing.

As I forced myself to pray this prayer, I began to mean more of the words. Any step towards obedience, God will bless. It is okay to pray a prayer like the above one if you do not quite mean every word; you are obeying by crying out to God, trying to release the hurt and trying to forgive. Healing takes time and patience. It takes help from God, prayer partners, professionals and support circles. I read books, I journaled, I cried, I was angry and felt every other emotion you can think of. There is no right way to heal. There is no timeframe that you “should” heal by. But heal, brothers and sisters, please heal. Allow yourselves to heal.

Image Credit: JC

Please contact Wounded Butterflies if you are in need of personal prayer. Thank you, Esther, for having the courage to share your story.

Guest Blog: Sexual Assault — A Teen’s Survivor Story

Image Credit: JC

NOTE: Today’s guest blog deals with sexual assault and its repercussions. While we pray it is edifying, the material may be upsetting to some readers.

If you are a survivor of sexual assault or other violence, please seek help. The Victim Connect Resource Center lists many hotlines that are situation-specific (children, military, women, teens, rape, domestic violence, trafficking, etc).


By Esther

I was sexually assaulted for the first time at the age of eight. When I told my mom what happened, her response to me was, “Nothing happened. There is nothing to talk about. We do not need to bring this up again.” This response by my mom caused extremely deep scarring and a massive misunderstanding in my mind. This story is not intended to belittle my mom. My heart’s plea is that we learn from her response and what could have been done differently.

Brothers and sisters, if someone comes to you and shares with you that they have been assaulted or touched without consent or anything like that, please listen. I plead on behalf of all victims, please listen.

I was a senior in high school. It was a very large public school with about 500 students in each grade level. Drug raids to check lockers was the norm. There were two extreme social classes in the same school. I was from the “poor” side of town; literally I lived in a different zip code from the “rich” kids. There was a bus sent to pick up about 30 of us from the poor side of town to attend this high school. For most of us, it felt like being sent to a pack of wolves every day. We were poor, we knew we were poor and had accepted that. To be placed in a school with peers who were driving Mercedes at the age of 16 and going on international vacations regularly, was difficult for some. I chose a different approach than to try to fit in at the high school. I created an entirely different social circle.

My boyfriend and all of my friends were from other schools or people I worked with. My boyfriend would drive me to school so I could avoid taking the bus. During my senior year, I was only in school for the morning so I could go to work in the afternoons. I was not around my high school peers very much at all. I found most of them to be utterly clueless about life and self-centered. They did not understand how it felt to go hungry or not have heat in your house. Their biggest concerns were whether they would spend their time off in London or France.

Like most high schools, there was a group of athletes that traveled in a pack through the halls. For my high school, this group contained the football, baseball and basketball teams. One day, I was running a little late to class and I found myself running up the stairs in front of this group of athletes. One of them, a football player, his real name is Anthony, sexually assaulted me. Right there on the stairs. I cannot tell you what other friends of his were around or what time of day it was or what happened afterwards. As humans, I think our brains tend to block out trauma to protect us. I remember his full name, his face as he laughed at me and I remember resisting.

I grew up on government assistance. My mom had been a single mom for two decades and was doing the best she could. I started working when I was 13 so I could have clothes and shoes to go to school. I worked at a retail clothing store and had a large employee discount. Due to this benefit, I was dressed in the latest fashion. We had no dress code in our high school, and everyone just wore whatever they wanted as long as “what mattered” was covered. That day, I was in a short skirt, which was the trend at the time. I had to learn that the way I dressed that day did not result in me “deserving” to be assaulted. There are people who believe when victims dress a certain way, they are asking to be sexually assaulted. Of course, this is a ridiculous line of thinking. But one that I had to overcome in my own mind.

After the assault on the stairs happened, I recalled what my mom told me as an 8-year-old girl after that sexual assault on the subway: “Nothing happened. There is nothing to talk about. We do not need to bring this up again.” I obeyed my mom. I told no one. I did not even tell my boyfriend, who I know for a fact would have wiped the parking lot up with Anthony. Assuming Anthony even survived an encounter with my boyfriend. Once again, I bottled up the pain and the hurt and the self-blame. I had a twisted mindset of what was appropriate and inappropriate. I began to make very poor choices when it came to the opposite sex. I continued to bottle things up and push the pain down until it about killed me. All because a person I went to for help did not listen to me. I regret not trying someone else. I regret not telling my grandma, a teacher, a friend, anyone. I just did what I was told to do, “We do not need to bring this up again.”

Brothers and sisters, I say again, if someone comes to you and shares with you that they have been assaulted or touched without consent or anything like that, please listen. I plead on behalf of all victims, please listen.

Brothers and sisters, if you are a victim of any kind of abuse – know this: It is NOT your fault. You did NOTHING to invite it, you do NOT deserve it and God does NOT want you treated that way. He died for you and goes before you and after you. He places His hand of blessing on your head (Psalm 139:5). David goes on in verses 17 and 18 to say, “How precious are your thoughts about me, O God. They cannot be numbered! I can’t even count them; they outnumber the grains of sand!” You are God’s beloved. “God showed how much he loved us by sending his one and only Son into the world so that we might have eternal life through him. This is real love—not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to take away our sins” (1 John 4:9-10). God will deal with the ones who hurt you. You may not see the Lord take revenge, but He will avenge what was done to you in His time and in His way. “It is a terrible thing to fall into the hands of the living God” (Hebrews 10:31).


Father God, we lift up Esther and all survivors of sexual assault for full and complete healing in Your loving arms. Please shower them with peace, love, and the eternal warmth of Your light. May the perpetrators fall into Your hands and learn Your justice. In the blessed name of Jesus we pray. Amen.

If you are in need of personal prayer, please contact Wounded Butterflies. Thank you, Esther, for continuing bravely to share your story.