Child Forsaken…

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Ever since I was a little girl, I have been plagued by nightmares.

One dream was particularly disturbing. It began during the period of time when I was being abused, and would often rip me violently from sleep. I would wake up terrified, my heart racing.

In the dream, my family and I were going out for dinner at a fancy restaurant. One of those places that are lavishly decorated with fresh flowers and tasteful artwork. The table was adorned with an elegant, white tablecloth and flickering candles. There were cloth napkins impeccably folded on each dinner plate.

After we were seated, I excused myself to go to the bathroom but was soon lost in a dark maze of hallways. When I finally found my way out, I discovered a large gymnastics studio that was bright and welcoming. The floor was covered with royal blue gymnasium mats, like those found in an elementary school. I had always wanted to join a gymnastics club, and was excited to have happened upon such a wonderful place.

I soon forgot about the family dinner and began having a wonderful time doing cartwheels and somersaults to my heart’s content. I was enjoying the freedom of this place so much that I failed to notice the small square in the middle of the room that was not covered with a blue mat. I did a cartwheel right into this section, and found myself falling down a twisting playground slide (Stay with me here, I realize the thoughts and fears of a five-year-old child may not make sense at times).

As I reached the bottom of the slide, I came face-to-face with a man dressed as a clown. He smiled at me, but I sensed immediately that he was extremely dangerous.

When I failed to cooperate with the games this man wanted to play, he locked me in a cage and began boiling a pot of water to cook me in (kind of reminiscent of Hansel and Gretel, right?) Anyways, I remember feeling terrified. I was sure I was going to die.

Then, I noticed a small birdcage beside the place where I was trapped. I suddenly had an idea. When the clown’s back was turned, I wrote a note to my family to tell them that I was in danger. That I needed them to save me. I reached over and tied the note to the bird’s leg and unlatched the door to its cage. I watched as the bird flew up the slide and through the opening in the floor. The clown didn’t seem to notice. The plan was working. I remember feeling, in the dream, that I was very clever.

The dream then transitioned back to the restaurant scene. I could see my father’s frustration as he and my family waited for me to return so that they could order. He sat quietly, looking solemn and imposing. The wait staff would never guess that he was livid, but I could tell just by looking at him. He was angry that I was inconveniencing him and causing embarrassment to my family.

The bird landed on the table and sat patiently while my father untied the string from around its leg. He read the note and let out a sigh of frustration. He leaned over and whispered something to my mother, and then addressed the wait staff in a formal and detached manner, “We will not be expecting anyone else to join us this evening, would you be so kind as to take our orders now”.

The scene flashed back to the basement room where I was trapped with the clown who could not be trusted. He walked slowly toward the cage and reached over to unlock the door. He looked up and smiled at me in a way that made me feel sick to my stomach. I desperately tried to back away from his reach, but soon felt the cold, hard steel of the cage pressing into my back. There was nowhere to run, nowhere to hide…

It was at this point in the dream that I often woke up in a panic, my heart racing and drops of sweat running down my face. Though I was trembling with fear, I didn’t dare cry out for my parents. I was afraid that if they found out about the dream, they would find out about the abuse as well. I worried that they would be angry and would punish me severely. I was convinced that they would stop loving me if they knew.

As I reflect back on that time in my life, I am heartbroken for the little girl I once was. I would give anything to take her in my arms and comfort her, reassuring her that the ‘bad’ things that happened to her were not her fault, and that she is worthy of love and protection.

That may seem like a given, but believe me – I did not always feel this way. There was a day, not so very long ago, when I hated that little girl. I believed she was to blame for the abuse, and the suffering that followed. This may seem difficult to believe, and I pray that you would not judge me too harshly – that you would extend grace. You see, I was deceived. I had entertained the lies of the evil one for so long that I was utterly convinced of their truth. He had a very powerful foothold in my life.

Even as I write this, I see the miracle of freedom unfolding. There was a time when I thought I was beyond hope, a day when I believed all manner of lies. Although the Pastor and my husband tried to speak truth into my life, I would not listen to reason.

And yet, my loving, heavenly Father has taken me by the hand and led me along the path toward healing. I know that I have not ‘arrived’ – that there is still brokenness inside in need of the Father’s healing touch, but the fact that I can look on that little girl with such compassion fills my heart with joy. It is evidence of the healing that has already taken place, and the promise of healing yet to come.

I can see the heart of the Father growing within me. Renewing my thoughts, my attitudes, and my passions. Transforming me into the person He always intended me to be, and equipping me for the tasks he planned for me before the foundation of the world.

Take delight in the LORD,

and he will give you your heart’s desires. 

Commit everything you do to the LORD.

Trust him, and he will help you. 

He will make your innocence radiate like the dawn,

and the justice of your cause will shine like the noonday sun.

Psalm 37:4-6 (NLT)

Many misinterpret these verses, preaching a kind of prosperity gospel in which God will grant any request we make of Him. That message simply does not line up with Scripture, or with the reality of our experiences. However, there is no need to be disappointed. The promise is far greater. Our loving, heavenly Father has promised that if we walk closely with him (take delight in the Lord), He will fill our heart with His own, holy desires. It is then, desiring what He desires, that we will find ourselves walking into all that God has planned for us.

Even as I am writing this, my eyes are being opened afresh to one of God’s wonderful promises. Verse six of the passage above states, He will make your innocence radiate like the dawn, and the justice of your cause will shine like the noonday sun.” How wondrous! I know I have been forgiven. I am learning to believe it in my heart, not just accept it as intellectual fact. But to think that my innocence will radiate like the dawn, what an exquisite thought! And that the justice of my cause will shine like the noonday sun. Glorious!

The lyrics from Hillsong United’s Hosanna echo through my mind…

Heal my heart and make it clean
Open up my eyes to the things unseen
Show me how to love like You have loved me

Break my heart for what breaks Yours
Everything I am for Your kingdom’s cause
As I walk from earth into eternity

Without a doubt, a miracle is taking place. My eyes are being opened to truths that had been veiled by darkness. My heavenly Father is teaching me to love. Even to love myself. My heart had become hardened from years of self-protection, but is now being softened day by day. Abba’s heart of compassion beats within me. The things that break His heart, increasingly break mine as well.

May you, dear friend, be filled to overflowing with the tenderness that flows from the Father’s heart of love.

Blessings and hugs,

Kamea

photo credit: <a href=”https://www.flickr.com/photos/amymctigue/3081660779/”>Amy McTigue</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a&gt; <a href=”http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/2.0/”>cc</a&gt;

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24 thoughts on “Child Forsaken…

  1. I felt like I was in that dream…that clown is terrifying. Kamea, I’m so sorry for your pain. The self condemnation has got to be the most difficult thing to overcome after abuse. I’m thankful God is reminding you of how precious you are to Him. Thanks for sharing this post. You are an amazing writer.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, the clown was terrifying. I would wake up completely petrified! I think the part of the dream that actually bothered me the most though was the fact that my parents knew, in the dream, what was going on, but couldn’t be bothered to come and help. There were reasons why I had these thoughts and fears. I’m sure I will share in another post.

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      • That is an area of pain for me as well. Denial is just an easier path for so many. I tried to tell someone in my family years later what happened and she didn’t believe me. Said he’d never do that. I remember walking away feeling like maybe I was just crazy.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. That face is terrifying!
    Although I don’t share your religious beliefs I do respect them.
    There is so much wisdom in your words, “love myself. My heart had become hardened from years of self-protection, but is now being softened day by day.”
    It’s risky to ‘open’ my heart, and I do so only with a few selected others worthy of my trust. It is a nice feeling to ‘open’ the heart and relax it’s tautness which has to a strain on it, keeping it so tight all the time…
    Sorry you experienced such a nightmare. I had nightmares too, the kind where I wouldn’t wake. Night terrors? And the same ones which I still remember.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Thank you for sharing so openly not only about the terrible abuse in your childhood… but about the nightmares that come with it. I have been a women’s pastor for many years and have counseled many beautiful women to discover freeedom and healing in Christ Jesus. Victory over the nightmares is a huge part in the God’s restoration. I pray for continued Showers of God’s love and peace and geniune freedom from heaven over you as you continue to stand against the lies and pain from the past. It wasn’t your fault sweetheart and that wasn’t a part of God’s original plan for you BUT oh how He will take all the pain and turn it into a beautiful victory filled with hope and joy! Love to you!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Danise,

      Your words of love and blessing brought tears to my eyes. It means so much to read your prayers for continued grace and freedom. God has begun an amazing work of restoration in me, and I am thankful to know that He is not finished with me yet.

      I am so thankful that there are people like you who are willing to walk alongside women who are broken, helping them to find freedom. My pastor is a very caring person, and he has been patiently walking alongside my husband and I through all this. I can see the value of having someone like yourself, another woman, to talk to. There would be a different level of understanding, I think, and also the ability to comfort more effectively – because of very necessary boundaries in mixed gender counseling situations. The women at your church are very blessed to have you, such a caring person, to reach out to.

      May God richly bless your ministry,
      Kamea

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  4. I hear your story and am struck by the strength and power to overcome I see from this side of the screen. God has really redeemed and is redeeming you from such horrific past circumstances. I know it’s been hard work and still hard work in process I’m sure – but what an incredible testament to His power in you. His love can conquer anything. Beautifully written post. I’m sorry you went through what you did. I know God will and is already perhaps using it to comfort others. I love that verse that talks about how our sufferings enable us to comfort others with the comfort we have received from God. May God continue to use your story to bring glory to his name and healing to others.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Melody,

      Thank you so much for your empathy and encouragement. If there is strength and power to be seen in my story, it comes from the Holy Spirit within me. I am weak, but the great I AM is strong!

      Thank you for your words of blessing, that God would continue to use my story to bring glory to His name, and healing to others. I believe that God has given me the promise of a ministry to others who are hurting, like I have been hurt. I take comfort in knowing that my brokenness will be redeemed for good – and not just my own good, but for the good of many.

      Blessings friend,
      Kamea

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  5. What a powerful testimony of God’s redemption and healing – that it doesn’t just happen in an instant, but that it’s a journey we travel as He writes hope and promise on our life. So happy that you have found Him and His tender love and willingly share your story with the hope that others will be encouraged to turn to Him. Just stopping by from the #raralinkup.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Welcome Tiffany,

      Spiritual and emotional healing truly is a journey, at times incredibly difficult, but also wondrously freeing! I am so thankful for Jesus, my Rock, my greatest supporter, my everything. I would be nothing without Him.

      Many blessings,
      Kamea

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Kamea, how precious it is to know the Lord has set you free and you are free to fly with Him. Praying you will soar as you leave behind the old and embrace all He has for you. May you too be filled to overflowing with the tenderness flowing from the Father’s heart to you, His Beloved.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Jeannie,

      Thank you for your beautiful words of blessing. I am trying, with the help and guidance of my loving, heavenly Father, to embrace everything He has in store for me. I trust that He has an amazing plan for my future, and I’m excited to discover all that He has in store.

      In His love,
      Kamea

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  7. I am so sorry you experienced such terrifying things as a child. Even amidst the horror, there is beauty…beauty in the way you tell the story…the colors. the details, and the intense feeling. I could almost see a film of this story. Thank you for your courage in sharing such personal events. I am also blessed by the way you have developed a faith in a God that brings healing. I’ve experienced His healing in much the same way you have described in this blog. Those similarities let me know I’m on the right track. God bless and keep you. 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dee,

      Thank you for your kind words of compassion and for your encouragement as well. It truly means so much. If there is beauty to be found in my writing, it is by the grace of God who is showing me the beauty of His love.

      I am so glad that you are experiencing His healing touch in your life. Perhaps you would consider subscribing, so that we can support one another through the journey.

      You are so precious to your heavenly Father, Dee. May you feel His love for you, in a very tangible way, in the days to come.

      Love,
      Kamea

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    • Welcome Susie!

      I am so glad that you are here. I consider it a blessing that our loving, heavenly Father has ministered to you today through my words. Like you, I am grateful for the opportunity to have our paths cross. I look forward to getting to know you!

      In His love,
      Kamea

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  8. Kamea your words are a light unto every readers feet. I sense Jesus real, alive, and active in your life. I feel empowered by the Holy Spirit through your post. Your story is moving. You show that God is the Healer. You show that God is all loving and all knowing. You show that God breathes new life in us and raises us up. He leads us out of darkness. Thank you for sharing this part of your story. You are helping me know more about Jesus. You are encouraging all of us to find Jesus in our mess. He is right in the middle of it all and willing to help us out. Thank you so much for being honest. You help us find courage to face our darkest nightmares.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sweet Lisa,

      Thank you so much for your encouraging comment. I am humbled, yet excited, to hear that you can learn more about Jesus through my words. From the beginning, I have been praying that God would use my story to minister to his hurting children – to inspire hope, and help those who are suffering to persevere through their dark valleys. Your comment fills my heart with joy.

      May God richly bless you, Lisa, out of the glorious riches of His grace,
      Kamea

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Pingback: Innocence Punished… | Incremental Healing

  10. I know recurrent dreams of mazes with terror waiting. I know about not being able to tell the people who are supposed to protect and cherish you. I hear your brave voice and see your walls of self protection. I’m 45 years old, and no one has ever held me and told me it would be alright, and I convinced myself long ago that I didn’t need anyone because I was the only one who ever kept me safe. You are so brave to tell your story, and you’re not alone. God was there, and He’s still here during the healing. Thank you for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dearest Angela,
      I am so sorry to hear that you suffered such trauma as a child. It broke my heart to hear you say, “no one has ever held me and told me it would be alright”. I have no words that will make that okay. I just want you to know that I was heartbroken to hear your pain. Please remember the truthful words of love that you shared with me, “God was there, and He’s still here”. I pray that you would feel His love for you in a very real way, that He would wrap His arms around you and fill you with a deep sense of His love for you.
      I hope that you will keep in touch, Angela. I would love to continue the journey toward healing with you by my side.
      Blessings and hugs,
      Kamea

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