Lies I Believe…

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The second phase of Anderson’s Steps to Freedom in Christ was ‘Deception Versus Truth’.  Before we began, the Pastor explained that this step involved asking the Holy Spirit to reveal any lies that I was believing. He handed me a pad of paper and a pen, and told me to write down whatever came to mind.  Sounded easy enough.

Lies I Believe…    I wrote at the top of the sheet.  “Ok,” I smiled, “I’m ready.”  Little did I know that I was about to be completely derailed.

The Pastor bowed his head and prayed, asking for divine revelation of lies masquerading as truth.

I’m a bad person. 

That was the first thing that came to mind. I hesitantly wrote it down, and then looked up with uncertainty from my paper. I could feel the heat of shame burning in my cheeks. “Ummm, what if the things that come to mind are not actually lies at all, but things that are true?” I asked.

The Pastor gently reminded me that I should just write down whatever came to mind, without thinking too much about it. He promised that we would read through the list afterward to discern whether the things I was hearing were indeed from God. We would take the time to measure them against the truth of God’s word and what we knew of His character.

“Ok,” I sighed nervously. Suddenly I wasn’t so sure that this was a good idea.

The Pastor again prayed. He asked that God would fill me with His peace, and would strengthen me for the task at hand. Words began flowing into my mind with such a clarity that I could almost hear them.

I am repulsive.  

I am stupid.  

I am unworthy of being loved.

My eyes brimmed with hot tears, but I kept writing…

I am good for absolutely nothing.

My family would be better off without me.

I’m worthless.

The ‘bad things’ that happened to me were my fault.

Tears now ran in streams down my face (and to be honest are again as I write this)…

My sole purpose in life is to be used for the gratification of others, and then be tossed aside like useless trash.

I am ‘that kind of girl’.

No one will ever be able to understand.

I’ll never get past this.

These things define who I am.

I felt the crushing pain of brokenness. Tears dripped off my hot cheeks onto the paper, blurring some of the words…

I can’t trust anyone to help me.  Not that anyone would ever want to.

I’m broken beyond repair.

Once people find out the bad things I’ve done – the terrible person that I am – they won’t want anything to do with me, OR they will use what they know to hurt, shame or manipulate me.

No one cares about me.

God is angry and disgusted with me.

I deserved all the ‘bad things’ that happened to me.

I deserve to be punished.  

I deserve to suffer.

Once I stop writing, the Pastor asks me if I will read the list to him. I try, but it’s too difficult. I hand the paper over to him, not daring to look him in the face.

This step involves renouncing the lies that Satan, the deceiver, has been accusing me of and replacing them with the truth of God’s Word.  Dispelling the darkness with His glorious light.

The trouble is, I can’t do it.  Not even the very first one.

I am supposed to say, “I renounce the lie that… I am a bad person” but I can’t. I honestly believe that it’s true. The Pastor just doesn’t understand, I tell myself. But, if he knew…

“What about Romans 3:23?” I ask. “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. We are ALL sinners, not one of us is good.”

The Pastor agrees that this verse does point to our sinful nature. Without Christ’s sacrifice to pay the penalty for our sins we would be lost, destined to live an eternity separated from God. “But, is that what you really mean?” he asks softly. “That you are a sinner, just like I am a sinner, or your husband, or kids are sinners?”

“No,” I confess. “It’s not the same. Maybe sinful or ‘bad’ is too tame of a word.” I try my best to explain through my sobs. I can’t look at the Pastor anymore. I am consumed with guilt and shame. For reasons that I don’t understand, I begin digging my nails into the backs of my hands.

I try, through my sobs to explain. I tell the Pastor that little children are supposed to be innocent and pure – not perfect in a human sense – but basically good. Untainted by the evils of the world around them. But I was different. I did things. Disgusting and shameful things.

The Pastor asks how old I was when these things happened. “Five,” I answer.

His voice is compassionate as he tells me he’s so sorry, and that it’s not my fault.

“Yes,” I protest. “It is. Other five year olds wouldn’t even know what was happening to them, but my dad warned me about this. He made me promise to say no, and to tell. But I didn’t listen. Don’t tell me it’s not my fault. I knew better, but I did it anyways. And I kept going back. Don’t you understand,” I sobbed. “I went back.”

My body racked with sobs of anguish. For decades these hideous secrets had been locked away from a world too unsafe to trust. I hid my brokenness with outward smiles, but inside I suffered in tortured silence.

Suddenly, I’m feeling acutely nauseous. My head hurts. I feel confused and disoriented.  I don’t remember anything after this. My husband, who has been quietly observing, tells me I became markedly different. Where I had been avoiding eye contact, I began looking distrustfully at both the Pastor and my husband. I looked frightened and confused, and just kept repeating that I didn’t want to be there, that I wanted to go home.

What I do remember is the fear that consumed me when my husband described the end of the meeting to me, and I had absolutely no idea what he was talking about, and no memory of how I had gotten home. A terrifying ‘black hole’ in time.

I didn’t understand at that time, but I had dissociated.  “Dissociation is a common defense/reaction to stressful or traumatic situations” (Steinburg, M.). Talking about the trauma from my past had caused me to feel threatened beyond my capacity to cope. At that time, I had not even heard of dissociation, but that does not mean it was the first time this had happened. It was, however, the first time that anyone had observed an episode, and told me about it. (I’ll share more about dissociation in future posts).

I was terrified. For one thing, I didn’t understand what had happened. It would be a least a few months before I was introduced to the word ‘dissociation’. On top of that, there was the aspect of losing control. I have been intensely hypervigilant for most of my life, trusting no one but myself to be on guard against danger. How was I supposed to keep myself safe, if I didn’t even know what was going on? Perhaps you can imagine my anxiety.

So there we were, in what felt like a ‘no-win’ situation. The band-aid had been ripped off my wound, leaving a gaping hole which oozed darkness and fear. The days ahead were challenging beyond words. The mess that spilled out was too ugly to ignore, and too massive to shove back into the closet marked ‘secret’. My life, for a time, was a complete disaster. It seemed that healing such absolute brokenness was an impossible task.

Yet, “Nothing is impossible with God” Luke 1:37 NIV

It would take some time, and would be the most difficult thing I had ever dealt with, but healing would come. Incrementally, to be sure, but it would come.

May you, dear friend, be encouraged knowing that even when the days seem dark and hopeless – He is with you, He loves you, and He holds the answers to all that troubles you,

Kamea

Sharing God’s faithfulness at…

    

Steinburg, Marlene M.D.  In-Depth: Understanding Dissociative Disorders.  http://psychcentral.com/lib/in-depth-understanding-dissociative-disorders/0001377 

photo credit: <a href=”https://www.flickr.com/photos/ferran-jorda/1429681296/”>Ferran.</a&gt; via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a&gt; <a href=”http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/”>cc</a&gt;

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14 thoughts on “Lies I Believe…

  1. Kamea, this is so very moving and well written. I wish I didn’t understand so well. Those self-condemnatory voices are all far too familiar to me. Reading your description of what you went through helps me to know that I’m not so crazy after all. I’ve had every single one of those thoughts! Trauma brings this out in the best of us and Satan loves to try so hard to pound down those of us who have been abused. He desires to use it to make abusers out of us or to defeat us to the point that we can’t even hold our heads up or look anyone in the eye, but God is greater and is squashing out his lies – like we will one day squash that same evil one’s head. The one thing that stays in my mind about self-condemnation is that the reason we give into it is because it gives us a false sense of control…when everything is out of control. After all if everything is our fault, then at least we might feel we have some control over ourselves. I try to remind myself of this when I am taking on too much blame for things going on around me. I tell myself each person is responsible for his or her own actions. Certainly, I can help influence someone to do good or bad, but to think that I as a child caused myself to be abused is insane. I know this on one level, yet on another I still find myself being hypervigilent and ambivalent. I guess those patterns are just so ingrained… My daughter was abused when she was five. She was hospitalized at 12 a couple of years back when the memory began to resurface in her mind in nightmares. What later resulted was depression, anxiety, psychosis and two weeks in the hospital because she was so sick she couldn’t keep her food down and she was seeing and hearing some very scary things. Just today we talked briefly about her abuse. It’s still so very hard for her, but God has brought her a long way. After what I’ve been through I’m praying that giving her the truth about herself at a young age will help to lessen the severity of stuff that we both are dealing with.

    As you know from reading my blog. I l listen to Steve Brown online regularly. He likes to say that when Satan comes at him with condemnatory stuff or someone else accuses him of something that he agrees with them and says, Bingo! Because just as your pastor says we are all sinners. What you and I are dealing with is much more than the realization that we are a sinners…it seems like you and I are bombarded with lies that cause us to think we are beyond redemption at times…but we are not! We are covered with the righteousness of Christ and made pure, clean and whole. Sometimes in my mind when I start to hear the lies I just tell Satan, Bingo, you are right I’m a sinner, I am bad, without God I’d be worthless, hopeless and beyond repair…but I’m covered by the blood…and He’s got me in the palm of His hand and nothing will ever ever snatch me out!

    Thanks for your courage in sharing, Kamea. This really encouraged me!

    In His amazing grace and love,
    Liz

    Liked by 2 people

    • Dearest Liz,

      I don’t even know where to begin in response. Firstly, I am so sorry that your daughter was abused and struggled so much as a result. At the same time, I praise God that she has you to empathize and understand, and was able to get help from the medical community when she needed it. I have been told by more than one counselor that one of the reasons that I struggle so much now, is that I carried it alone, and that was too large a burden for anyone, let alone a five year old child. I will pray for your daughter, that she will find freedom at a young age, and not allow the evil one a foothold by agreeing with his lies like I did.

      I love, love, love how you respond to Satan when he lies to you… “Bingo, you are right I’m a sinner, I am bad, without God I’d be worthless, hopeless and beyond repair…but I’m covered by the blood…and He’s got me in the palm of His hand and nothing will ever ever snatch me out!” How powerful! The evil one must cringe in defeat, knowing you are right!

      You are such a wonderful encouragement to me Liz. I thank God for bringing you into my life.
      Kamea

      Like

    • Lynette,

      What you say is so true. The enemy certainly does come to steal, kill and destroy. And he screams lies of unworthiness to us. John 8:44 says, “He has always hated the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he lies, it is consistent with his character; for he is a liar and the father of lies”. Facing these lies that are buried so deeply is painful, but freeing. For it is the truth that sets us free.

      Thank you so much for your kind words of encouragement. I sincerely hope that you will visit again, and perhaps consider subscribing. Encouragement from people like you helps me so much in knowing that I am not alone.

      Blessings,
      Kamea

      Like

  2. I need to do that – write the untruths down that I keep telling myself – and giving them to God. Have you ever experienced travail, where the Holy Spirit grieves through you? – and all the hurt is washed up and out by it? My heart breaks at your pain – but I am so cheering that you found someone to help you overcome. I so want to read more of your story. So blessed you came by my place and I met you!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thank you so much for your kind words of encouragement. I am not familiar with travail. Is there a website or other resource that you would suggest I check out to learn more about it? I love that you want to read more of my story. Maybe you would consider subscribing. I am looking forward to getting to know both here at Incremental Healing, and over at Blue Cotton Memory.

      Blessings,
      Kamea

      Like

  3. Your honesty and vulnerability is beautiful here. I found myself nodding along to so many of the lies you listed and though processes. You are not the only one friend. Blessings of beauty today! Visiting form Coffee for Your Heart

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thank you Becky! It is unbelievable how powerful the words “you are not the only one” are! The evil one would have us believe that we suffer alone – but it is a lie. It is so therapeutic to know I am understood!
      Blessings friend – I hope we will connect again soon 🙂
      Kamea

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Such wonderful words of hope for a world who needs to hear them. I was 19 when my trauma occurred and so understand telling myself I should have known better.
    I am so glad I have the God who heals on my side. Who knows where I would be without Him!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Welcome Sarah!

      I am so sorry that you were subjected to trauma. It always saddens me to hear that someone else has been hurt like I was.

      I was so encouraged that you were able to clearly hear the message of hope. Sometimes I wonder if the dark and yucky things might get in the way, but I should know better than to worry. This is the message God has given me to share. He has promised to redeem my brokenness for good, and I can trust in His goodness to deliver on the promise 🙂

      I am heading over shortly to see what you are up to on your blog. I love meeting new friends 🙂 I hope we will connect again soon!

      Blessings,
      Kamea

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Oh my goodness Kamea, your words and feelings brought me to tears. How very, very sad that you experienced such trauma, and on top of that, that you believed those lies for so long. 😦 I love liztinnea’s thoughts (above) on how believing the lies can give us a feeling of control in an otherwise out-of-control situation.

    I am happy that you are on a journey of healing, and that you are here to help others who have experienced similar traumas.

    May God bless you and your work/words.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you for your words of compassion and blessing Nina. Although I have experienced much heartbreak and brokenness, I am beginning to catch glimpses of how God is redeeming even the most difficult things for good.

      Thanks again for visiting. I hope to connect again soon.

      Blessings,
      Kamea

      Liked by 1 person

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