***Trigger Warning: Mentions of Physical Abuse & Emotional Distress***
I looked outside my bedroom door and saw my caregiver being abused while scooting across the floor. My stomach tightened. My body froze as I tried to process what was happening through my eight-year-old brain. I closed my bedroom door and laid across the bed. I turned up the tv’s volume and tried my best to block out the noise.
This moment was the first I had ever seen a disturbing encounter between people I loved. I wanted to help make the fighting stop, but was too afraid to speak. It was times like this that pierced my heart with fear and pain. What hurts the most was feeling alone and internalizing it all—wishing I could change things and not understanding that it was not my responsibility.
I didn’t understand much about you back then, but somehow, I knew praying would help me get through scary moments.
Thank you for keeping me company when I was afraid.
I often questioned your position in my life and felt that you abandoned my caregiver and me. I assumed that my prayers went unanswered and believed there was no hope for a better life.
I remember asking, “where were you back then? Why didn’t you help?” and I will never forget the words you spoke to my heart.
You reminded me that you were always there in the room with me in those chaotic moments, listening to my prayers. When I cried myself to sleep, it was your warm embrace that covered my body with peace.
Praying saved me. Writing letters to you saved me from overthinking myself to death. I didn’t have a therapist or anyone else to talk to. But I had you, and our relationship helped me survive the unbearable. Thank you for not leaving my side, even when I interpreted your silence for abandonment.
Thank you for not letting me give up on myself.
I remember the day I was sitting in the closet contemplating my life. I was hurt and in a dark place, feeling alone and lifeless. I asked you to bring me home (take my life away), but you didn’t. I wanted to give up on life many times, but you wouldn’t let me.
I do not know what you see in me; I do not always know the value you’ve placed upon me. But I know that you say I am worthy when I feel unworthy. You love me when I feel unlovable. When I hate my life and want to die, you pour power into my soul and help me rise again.
I know that there is a reason you have kept me here through it all, and although I do not know what that reason is, I am grateful for it.
Thank you for showing me that you specialize in healing people like me.
I understand that my life is not too complicated for you to untangle. Thank you for showing me that my mistakes are not life sentences. Thank you for mending me together daily and healing me from the pain I’ve carried for over 15 years.
I didn’t think it would be possible for someone like me—a little black girl, trauma and abuse survivor, to catch the attention of a God like you. But you have shown me that you specialize in healing people regardless of what they look like or where they come from.
Father, I thank you for creating a safe place for me to bring my truths to the light. Thank you for never leaving me, turning your back on me, or making me feel that my situations were too much for your healing grace.
Thank you for loving me amid seasons where I felt unlovable. Your unconditional love is teaching me how to love myself.
Why have an authentic conversation with God?
Because your higher power loves you just as you are and is ready to answer all of your questions.
It is important to feel that we can be honest with our higher power. We do not need to hide our true feelings and emotions towards situations that bother us. When we hide a part of ourselves, not only can we not heal it, but that pain aches inside of us and can cause daily trials until we address it.
I have had a misconception about God, and for a long time, I was afraid to be open and honest about my suffering. I thought that I had to be perfect when approaching God, my problems were too big, or that he wouldn’t come through for me.
In building a relationship with God, I am learning that complete surrender and trust help me remove the facade and pour everything out that I need to. This act is healing my mind and spirit. In return, I am learning more about God’s character, and He is so different from how I imagined him to be, which is a great thing.
If you could thank God for one thing (only if you are comfortable sharing publicly), what would it be? Comment below!