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DESPERATE TO BE MARRIED

DESPERATE TO BE MARRIED

One of my dreams was to get married early so I could have children early and enjoy my husband while still young. It was a perfect plan. So when at 27 I was NOT in a committed relationship let alone married I THOUGHT SOMETHING WAS WRONG with me. I prayed and fasted but as soon as I got into a committed relationship he would either be putting pressures on me for sex, asking if I could be pregnant before the wedding or not just a committed Christian. 

By my judgment, I am a smart, hardworking, pretty and intelligent lady. I graduated with an excellent result, had a good job, dined with important people, and lived in a nice apartment in a choice area in Lagos BUT NO MAN seemed interested in a long term relationship with me. I was qualified, I was good enough and I felt I was better than some of my friends who got married before me. “They are not even as pretty and smart as me, yet they are getting the best men for husband.” I thought.

Isn’t that what we do sometimes, instead of us to be happy when God is blessing a friend, we stay at a corner, grumbling and murmuring about how we think we deserve the blessing more than the other person who got it. As believers, we must learn to celebrate others and rejoice with them while we are waiting for God’s blessings to manifest in our lives. 

Then God taught me that as long as I kept LOOKING FOR THE MAN BY MYSELF I WILL NOT ONLY DELAY THE PROCESS BUT I WILL NOT GET WHAT HE APPROVES OF.

I quit my ‘search’ to focus on Him and myself. I studied the bible, volunteered to assist fellowships, joined bus evangelism, published my first novel, went back to school, volunteered as a regular speaker for a youth outreach, published a relationship magazine…just having fun with God and myself and helping people.

The man showed up! Guess what? He was there all the while! 

IF YOU CHASE GOD HE BECOMES OBLIGATED TO GIVE YOU YOUR DESIRES. DON’T SAY YOU ARE WAITING FOR THE RIGHT PERSON, GET BUSY BEING THE RIGHT PERSON. And enjoy being the right person. God has good intentions for you to be happy with the right partner but your priorities have to be right.

SEEK HIM FIRST.

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ATTRACTING AND ENJOYING THE FAVOUR OF GOD IN DIFFICULT TIMES

ATTRACTING AND ENJOYING THE FAVOUR OF GOD IN DIFFICULT TIMES

The current economic difficulty is nothing new only that the pandemic seemed to have made it tougher. We see many of such examples in the Bible beginning from the book of Genesis. There were famines during the times of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. In fact, it was a famine that led to the relocation of Jacob’s whole family  to Egypt when they learnt that Joseph, whom they had assumed dead, was the prime minister there (Genesis 12:10, 26:1, 47:1-6).

But the significant thing in each case is that God came to the aid of His people. The Bible promises in Psalm 33:18-19:

“Behold, the eye of the Lord is upon them that fear him, upon them that hope in his mercy; To deliver their soul from death, and to keep them alive in famine.”

“The young lions do lack, and suffer hunger: but they that seek the Lord shall not want any good thing.” – Psalm 34:10

What can we do to attract and enjoy God’s favour in difficult times

1. Trust in the Lord and seek His help. I will lift up my eyes to the hills—From whence comes my help? My help comes from the Lord, Who made heaven and earth. Psalm 121:1, 2. {Please examine Psalm 1 and discuss the blessings of the man who seek God} 

One major way to attract and enjoy God’s favour is to trust in HIM. He is our Source and will never abandon His children. There are promises throughout scriptures of the benefits of trusting in God. The favour of God abides with seekers and lovers of God.

2. Get a means of livelihood no matter how small: Have you lost your job, client or customers as a result of the pandemic? Don’t be discouraged, instead find something and get busy. The Bible promises that God will bless the work of your hands (Deuteronomy 28:12). But we need to be doing something for this promise to be fulfilled. You may not find work equivalent to your qualification or experience. You may learn or practice a craft despite your degree. There’s no shame in doing work that ensures your sustenance

And whatever work you accept, do it as unto the Lord. Do not dodge your responsibilities because the pay is small. Your diligent handling of your duties will be rewarded by the Lord in His time and way.

“Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward. You are serving the Lord Christ.” – Colossians 3:23-24 (ESV)

Idleness is not an option for a child of God. Hear Paul’s admonition in 2 Thessalonians 3:10-12: (NLT)

3. Maintain a spirit of gratitude and Give: There is so much to thank God for even in hard times and thankfulness attracts the favour of God. For example, the gift of life, good health, our families, the little we have, are all grounds for thanking God. The psalmists were very good at this as this example shows:

“Bless the Lord, O my soul: and all that is within me, bless his holy name. Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits: Who forgiveth all thine iniquities; who healeth all thy diseases; Who redeemeth thy life from destruction; who crowneth thee with lovingkindness and tender mercies; Who satisfieth thy mouth with good things; so that thy youth is renewed like the eagle’s.” – Psalm 103:1-5

Thanking God leads us to receiving His blessings as we see in Psalm 50: 14 & 15: “Offer unto God thanksgiving; and pay thy vows unto the most High: And call upon me in the day of trouble: I will deliver thee, and thou shalt glorify me.”

It is not only the wealthy that should give. God expects even the most humble among us to be openhanded with what He has blessed us with. When God sought for a way to sustain Elijah the prophet during the famine he declared, He sent him to the widow of Zarephath who had almost nothing. By opening her doors to share her last meal with the prophet, she received a miracle that saved her family throughout the three and half-year famine (1 Kings 17:8-16). And we can give other resources that are not material like our time, word of prayer and encouragement, strength and abilities.

4. Match your expenditure to your earnings and what you can afford: Living a life above your means can hinder the blessings of God because it can push us to do ungodly things to maintain it. You don’t have to prove anything to anyone. Some people are perpetually in debt because they are “enjoying” stuff that are above their earning.

Besides, overspending and putting oneself in debt does not show good stewardship of the little we have from God and disqualifies us from receiving more. The Parable of the Talents in Matthew, chapter 25 and The Parable of the Ten Minas in Luke, chapter 19 demonstrate this.

5. Pay your bills as soon as you can and avoid buying on credit: This is related to the point above. Even when you don’t have much, make sincere efforts to pay your bills and trust God to see you through. Don’t live in someone’s house and refuse to pay rent or choose to pay it after much trouble. You shouldn’t move into accommodation you can’t afford and then defer paying rent until you meet all your other needs. Do not abuse people’s good will. Some people live in rented accommodation they hardly pay for while using their resources to build their own houses. That is not progress, it is wickedness! The Bible says we should do unto others as we would have them do unto us (Matthew 7:12).

6. Do not borrow money you have no intention of paying back: When things are hard, it often becomes necessary that one should seek help from friends and relatives. If we want God’s blessing on our lives, we should do this sincerely. First, we shouldn’t exaggerate our problems to get help. Second, we should make honest efforts to return what we have borrowed. We could ask for deferment of deadline, we could pay in instalment, but we shouldn’t take people’s money and run.

Sometimes, in the process of requesting an extension of the deadline, the creditor may kindly cancel the debt. Those who think they are smart and blatantly default on personal loans close doors to future assistance in their own faces.

God hates such deceit and cannot favour the offender.

“Lying lips are abomination to the Lord: but they that deal truly are his delight.” – Proverbs 12:22

PRAYER:

  • We receive grace to absolutely trust in you, not in our qualifications or experience.
  • We trust You, father that not only we will survive this pandemic but we will enjoy your favor while it last.
  • Purify my heart from greed, envy, and every form of dishonesty. May I not dishonor You to make ends meet. 
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WHY IS IT SO HARD TO FIND THE RIGHT LADY TO MARRY?

WHY-IS-IT-SO-HARD-TO-FIND-THE-RIGHT-LADY-TO-MARRY

I am in my thirties and it’s hard getting the kind of woman I want to marry. In all the girls I have dated cannot really say if I there’s a ‘wife-material’ amongst them. It seems the kind of ladies I like are either not interested in me; none has dared to be intimate with me as I want or already married. I am not a supermodel neither do I have that kind of physique that would make heads turn, but I do not believe I am ugly either. I am just okay for a young man but I do not know why ladies don’t take me seriously. I feel am getting old and time is running out on me.

You mention some very important things that suggest you may be looking for love in the wrong places and with the wrong ideas in mind. The first thing you said is: It seems the kind of ladies I like are either not interested in me” That means there are some ladies that are interested. The idea is connected with the next thing you say: “I am not a supermodel neither do I have that kind of  physique that would make heads turn, but I do not believe I am ugly either.” You end with a desperate comment: “I am getting old and time is running out on me.”

You need to examine what you are really interested in and what you are expecting. There are men who are not supermodels and have never been without a lady. Same way, there are model-like men who have never been in a serious relationship.Men without partners stay in their zone while searching. That does not mean there are ladies who are too good for them; it means they do not force a compatibility that is not there.

What are your criteria for a potential mate? Are you looking for something that is just on the surface: tall, dark/fair, and big hips? Are you moving too fast? Are you expecting too much? Is your attitude dismissing ladies who may be potential dates or relationshipsbecause you are too focused on what has proven not to work? If you want a different result, you have to do something differently to get it. If the criteria you are using is not working, you need to rework your plan.

The only guy who look like supermodels are supermodels and you must have noticed guys who you do not think measure up to you and are happily dating or married. A supermodel may be every woman’s dream, but they also have their own share of heartaches. Movie stars and celebrities get divorced and dumped, and in public too. Your looks do not guarantee you happiness and no lady takes your heart with her when she walks out the door.

You Might Be Too Desperate or Needy. There’s no quicker way to discourage a potential when you appear to be desperate or needy. Wanting a woman is not the same as needing one.Neediness is a state of mind where you feel incomplete, or have an emotional void, and try to fill this empty space with a relationship validation. Neediness usually stems from a lack of self-esteem or sense of worth. You feel like something is missing within yourself or in your life and erroneously believe a relationship will be the cure. If you were unhappy before the relationship, you’ll be unhappy in it. Instead of feeling sorry for yourself about being single, work on your relationship with yourself. Work on feeling your best and looking your best.

If you hear your clock ticking, chances are they (ladies) hear it too and to someone else whether it is a guy or a girl, it sounds like desperation. That is a turn off unless you find someone who is as desperate as you and that is not a good basis for a relationship.

You need to take a step backward and reassess. Look at what you want in realistic way. Even if you have an instant reaction to someone, you need to make realistic decisions about how you will act. Enjoy the moment instead of projecting your future on the women you meet. Start by simply meeting people. Get comfortable with that and you will start noticing realistically what ladies you attract and who attract you. Then, you can start building towards friendship. Once you are comfortable there, you can start looking at long term relationships. It could take weeks, months or even years, but until you get there, you will be learning more about yourself and your true likes and dislikes and that will make the dating experience get better with time and when you meet Mrs. Right, you will both be ready for the relationship you want so much.

Besides, being single is not a curse and being in a relationship is not also a cure for loneliness. No matter what stage of life you are in, it is important to take a personal inventory to look at the habits and choices that are helping you and the ones that are hurting you. Where you are now in life and the experiences you might be having are as a result of the choices you have made or still making.

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WHY DO I FEEL GUILTY FOR BEING SEXUALLY ABUSED

WHY-DO-I-FEEL-GUILTY-FOR-BEING-SEXUALLY-ABUSED–

“I was raped at 10 and the abuse continued till I was 15. I am finding it difficult to move on with life because I feel so guilty about the being abused. I keep thinking I could have done something about it or maybe there was some ways I enjoyed it and allowed the abuse to continue.”

One of the deepest and most painful effects of abuse is the profound sense of guilt that often afflicts survivors. Those who have never suffered the pain of abuse would loudly declare that the survivor was the innocent victim who did not cause the abuse and should not feel the least bit guilty. They are correct. Unfortunately, even though abuse survivors would loudly proclaim the freedom of guilt to others who have suffered abuse, they seldom apply this truth to themselves. This article will look at some of the root issues fueling the false guilt of abuse, and help those who are recovering from abuse learn how to overcome false guilt and walk in peace. The list is far from conclusive, but it covers some of the main causes of guilt I’ve seen through the years as I’ve counseled abuse survivors.

As a child, we want the world to make sense. We grow up hearing that the big people are in charge and we need to obey them. Everyone is born with a deep need to be loved and feel secure. We instinctively look to our parents and caregivers to fulfill those needs. Abuse from those who were supposed to protect us does not make sense. There is no way it can. As a child, our need to feel loved and secured is shattered as we are abused by those who were supposed to keep us safe and provide for our needs. After all, we were taught that Mom and Dad were in charge and we assumed that they were always right. In innocence, and in desperation to make sense of the world, children who are abused often assume that they must be the ones who were wrong, and therefore they deserve the harsh treatment they are receiving. This does not make logical sense when we step back from our emotions and evaluate the thoughts. No matter how badly a child behaves, no child deserves to be beaten physically or abused sexually. However, in the mind of an abused person, it seems to make all the puzzle pieces fall into place. “I am so bad that my daddy has no choice but to treat me like this.” Of course, nothing could be further from the truth.

Believing that the abuse was “my fault” also instills a false sense of hope and control. Admitting that the abuse is not my fault, and recognizing that there is nothing that I can do to prevent the abuse, brings the terrifying realization that there is absolutely nothing that I can do to stop the abuse or predict when it is going to happen. This realization is accompanied by terror and helplessness. If I unconsciously believe that the abuse is “my fault” and that “my horrible behavior” caused the abuse, I can hold onto a false hope that I can prevent the abuse by becoming “invisible” or by being a good boy or good girl. After all, we are taught that bad things don’t happen to good boys or girls. Our abusers may even tell us so. Healing comes at a deeper level as we acknowledge that the abuse was not our fault, confront our terror and helplessness, and seek healing from safe people.

“My body responded to the abuse. That ‘proves’ that I must have wanted the abuse to happen.” Our bodies are amoral. Our sexual organs were created with many nerve endings that respond to touch. Our bodies don’t know if that touch was wanted or unwanted. They don’t know if the touch was from the loving hands of our spouse, or from the tormenting hands of an abuser. Our bodies just know that the nerve endings are being stimulated and that the stimulation feels good. Males commonly experience an erection during unwanted sexual touch which adds to the false guilt. Both males and females experience orgasm during unwanted sexual abuse. This does not mean that the abuse survivor wanted the abuse. It simply means that the body’s nerve endings did what they were designed to do in a situation that was not supposed to happen. Recognizing this truth has helped many abuse survivors overcome years of false guilt.

“There were times when I initiated the abuse. Surely this ‘proves beyond a shadow of a doubt’ that I wanted the abuse to happen.” There are many reasons why an abuse survivor may begin to initiate sexual activity with the abuser. The human heart is very complex and the wounds and voids of life can leave us starved for affection. Abusers know this and are expert manipulators. They seem to have a built in radar sensor to figure out which kids have emotional voids and are open to abuse. They can also figure out which kids are less likely to tell an adult that the abuse happened, and which kids are more likely to be shy and silent. They prey upon these vulnerabilities during the grooming process. The abuser grooms – or prepares – the potential victim by showering him with attention and making him feel like he has a special relationship with the abuser. The abuser may even buy special gifts for the child and/or let him do special things that others in his family are not allowed to do. Abusers often introduce abuse through non-sexual touch like hugging or massages. If the child is responsive to this touch, he then begins to make the touch more sensual. The child’s boundaries are eroded and he often suffers emotional confusion as this trusted friend begins to make unusual requests. Sometimes the victim complies because the abuser tapped into a vulnerable part of the child’s heart that craves attention. Sometimes the victim complies because he feels obligated to the abuser due to their special relationship. Manipulative abusers can make the victims feel like the abuse was their idea, and some even threaten the child or his family if he tells. This sets the victims up for further abuse.

Abuse fragments the victim’s heart.Sometimes abuse victims learn to “enjoy” the abuse out of desperation to avoid the emotional torment and terror of the abuse. Victims are usually conditioned to submit to their abusers and may not see any other options but to comply with the abuse. If children who are being abused were forced to live in the ongoing terror of the abuse, they would probably suffer a severe emotional breakdown. Often the child’s mind “splits” or dissociates. This means that a part of their mind stays to endure the abuse, and a part of their mind “goes away”. Think of the last time you had to perform a prolonged, mundane task. Your mind probably got so bored with the task that part of your mind began to daydream that you were off doing something exciting, while another part of your mind and body continued to perform the task. This is a very simple example of dissociation, and most of us experience this from time to time. Dissociation during abuse occurs on a far more severe level. The part of the mind that stays to endure the abuse is forced to “like” the abuse to avoid “going crazy”. Sometimes that part even learns to initiate the abuse to gain the favor of the abuser, or to protect younger siblings from the abuser. The victim initiating the abuse in no way justifies the actions of the abuser. No matter the situation, if a child makes sexual advances towards an adult, an older child, or a person in a perceived position of authority; it is the spiritual, moral, and ethical responsibility of that person to protect the child and to get help for that child as quickly as possible.

Sometimes abuse survivors feel a special bond with their abusers.Tracy, Tracy, and Garrison explain this in their book Mending the Soul Student Edition (Zondervan, 2011).Compounding the manipulation experienced during the grooming process, our bodies secrete special hormones during and after a sexual experience that bond our hearts to the object of our stimulation. God’s intent was that the bonds to our spouse continue to grow as we thrive in marital and sexual intimacy. Remember, our bodies are amoral and can’t tell if our sexual experience is within the boundaries of a godly marriage, or within the broken boundaries of abuse. Unfortunately, this works against abuse victims to deepen the strange emotional connection between the victim and the abuser. This also intensifies the confusion the victims face when they find themselves bonded to the one who causes so much pain. Fortunately, these strange connections can be broken through prayer and counseling to free the survivor from the emotional bondage that was forced upon him during the abuse.

“But I didn’t stop the abuse from happening, and I didn’t tell anybody about the abuse when I had the chance. Doesn’t this ‘prove’ I wanted the abuse to continue?”  There can be multiple reasons why victims don’t stop the abuse or report it to others. Remember that abusers are expert manipulators. They often trick the victims into thinking that the abuse was their idea. They may also threaten the victims that they or a member of their family will be harmed if they tell. Other times, the abusers exploit the bond that has been built with the victim. Abusers pressure the victim not to tell anyone or their “special relationship” will end and the abuser, himself, will be in trouble. Not wanting the “special relationship” to end may not make sense to one who hasn’t been abused. It helps to remember the issues of dissociation, whereby the victim’s mind – heart – is split into pieces. The piece of the heart that carries the terror of the abuse is separate from the piece of the heart that engages in a special relationship to avoid going crazy. As healing begins and the fragments of the heart are reunited, the survivor often feels relieved to recognize that a large part of their heart truly hated the abuse.

The process of “learned helplessness” keeps the victims silent. If the abuser uses aggression to force the victim to comply, the fear of being harmed can propel the victim to remain silent even after the abuser is gone. Small children may be fully dependent upon an abusive caregiver. They may fear abandonment and being helplessly left alone if they turn their abuser in. Children don’t have adult reasoning capabilities to figure out how to get help. They “learn” the message that they are helpless to stop the abuse. Even after they grow older and/or their abuser is gone, they continue to perceive that they are helpless. “Learned helplessness” explains why a child who is aggressively abused at home fails to tell a teacher or other caregiver about the abuse. During the healing process, survivors begin to learn their current coping abilities as they heal and grow stronger.

Abusers often refuse to acknowledge their guilt and push it off on their victims. The authors of Mending the Soul Student Edition explain that abusers should feel immense guilt for what they’ve done. This guilt should cause them to feel extreme conviction, leading to repentance and a full acceptance of responsibility for the harm they have caused. Instead of repenting, abusers commonly refuse to accept responsibility and harshly blame the victims. This manipulates the victims into carrying false guilt for what the abuser has done. One of the first steps to overcoming false guilt is to hand the guilt back to its rightful owner – the abuser.

Abuse survivors can take positive steps to overcome false guilt and the negative effects of abuse. The first important step that they must take is to come to Jesus. This step may sound obvious to anyone who hasn’t been abused, but victims struggling with false guilt often feel too dirty and disgusting to come to Jesus. Satan is right there screaming lies in the struggler’s ear. We can remind survivors that Jesus came for broken people. He forgave the repentant thief on the cross who was mocking Him just moments earlier (Matthew 27:44, Luke 23:39-43), and He forgave the woman caught in adultery (John 8:2-11). No matter how dirty we feel or how sinful we have been, Jesus came to heal people just like us. He loves us in a safe way and He can help us navigate through the healing process.

Abuse survivors will need the help of safe, godly people as they overcome false guilt. Yes, God touches our hearts individually through the Holy Spirit, but He also works through His people to heal our hearts. This can be a scary step for those who were abused by someone who was supposed to keep them safe. It can be especially frightening if that person was in the church. However, a principle in God seems to be to use healthy people to help us heal from the wounds inflicted by unhealthy people. A great first step in finding a safe person would be to talk to someone in the pastoral care department of your local church. You can also talk to a counselor who has experience in helping people overcome sexual abuse. As you heal, you can pray for God to send you one or two other safe people that you can share your story with. You don’t have to tell everyone about your abuse. God will show you who He wants you to tell. You will also need other safe friends just to enjoy life with. It will take some time to learn trust, but it is worth the effort.

Facing the pain of your past with safe others is essential in your healing process. You might feel like you just want to forget your abuse and move on, but it is important to acknowledge your wounds, take them to the cross, and find healing. One of the worst things about getting a physical wound that requires stitches is that the doctor has to wash out the wound before he stitches it up. That hurts. Sure, he could stich it up without washing it out, but that would leave contaminants in the wound that would cause much worse problems down the road. It is better to endure the short-term pain of cleaning out the wound thoroughly so that a deeper healing can take place. Your heart is just like this. It will be painful to talk about the abuse, but in doing so the Lord can bring a deeper and more thorough healing. As your healing progresses, you will find good parts of your heart coming back to life and you will have much more peace. The short-term pain of the healing process is worth it for the long-term peace the process brings.

Give yourself much patience during the healing journey. Healing is a process that usually takes much longer than we wish it did. Give yourself a lot of grace during this process, and take as much time as you need. I hope that your favorite part of the journey will be to learn about God’s safe heart of love for you. He is a safe caretaker that heals our hearts, strengthens us, and teaches us how to do life. You will learn some beautiful things about God along the way. You will learn some beautiful things about yourself too.

Response source: Reconciliation ministry

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HOW HEALTHY IS YOUR RELATIONSHIP? SCORE YOURSELF.

HOW-HEALTHY-IS-YOUR-RELATIONSHIP-SCORE-YOURSELF.

Everyone deserves to be in a safe and healthy relationship. Do you know if your relationship is healthy? Answer YES or NO to the following questions to find out. Make sure to write down your responses. At the end, you’ll find out how to score your answers.

The Person I’m With

  1. Is very supportive of things I do.
  2. Encourages me to try new things.
  3. Likes to listen when I have something on my mind.
  4. Understands that I have my own life too.
  5. Is not liked very well by my friends.
  6. Says I’m too involved in different activities.
  7. Texts me or calls me all the time.
  8. Thinks I spend too much time trying to look nice.
  9. Gets extremely jealous or possessive.
  10. Accuses me of flirting or cheating.
  11. Constantly checks up on me.
  12. Controls what I wear or how I look.
  13. Tries to control what I do and who I see.
  14. Tries to keep me from seeing or talking to my family and friends.
  15. Has big mood swings, is angry and yelling at me one minute but is sweet and apologetic the next.
  16. Makes me feel nervous or like I’m “walking on eggshells.”
  17. Puts me down, calls me names, or criticizes me.
  18. Makes me feel like I can’t do anything right or blames me for problems.
  19. Makes me feel like no one else would want me.
  20. Threatens to hurt me, my friends or family.
  21. Threatens to hurt him or herself because of me.
  22. Threatens to destroy my things.
  23. Grabs, pushes, shoves, chokes, punches, slaps, holds me down, throws things or hurts me in some way.
  24. Breaks or throws things to intimidate me.
  25. Yells, screams, or humiliates me in front of others.
  26. Pressures or forces me into having sex or going farther than I want to.

Scoring

Give yourself 1 point for every NO you answered to numbers one through four, one point for every YES response to numbers five through eight and five points for every YES to numbers nine and above.

Now that you’ve finished and have your score, the next step is to find out what it means. Simply take your total score and see which of the categories below apply to you.

 

Score: 0 Points

You got a score of zero? Don’t worry–it’s a good thing! It sounds like your relationship is on a pretty healthy track. Maintaining healthy relationships takes some work–keep it up! Remember that while you may have a healthy relationship, it’s possible that a friend of yours does not. If you know someone who is in an abusive relationship, find out how you can help them.

Score: 1-2 Points

If you scored one or two points, you might be noticing a couple of things in your relationship that are unhealthy, but it doesn’t necessarily mean they are warning signs. It is still a good idea to keep an eye out and make sure there isn’t an unhealthy pattern developing.

The best thing you can do is to talk to your partner and let them know what you like and don’t like. Encourage them to do the same. Remember, communication is always important when building a healthy relationship. It’s also good to be informed so you can recognize the different types of abuse.

Score: 3-4 Points

If you scored three or four points, It sounds like you may be seeing some warning signs of an abusive relationship. Don’t ignore these read flags. Something that starts small can grow much worse over time. No relationship is perfect–it takes work! But in a healthy relationship you won’t find abusive behaviors.

Score: 5 or More Points

If you scored five or more points, you are definitely seeing warning signs and may be in an abusive relationship. Remember the most important thing is your safety–consider making a safety plan right now.

You don’t have to deal with this alone. We can help

(Adapted from: loveisrespect.org.)

Shalom!

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WHAT ARE THE SIGNS AN ADULT MIGHT DISPLAY IF HE WAS ABUSED AS A CHILD?

How-do-I-open-up-to-Gods-Healing-after-Abuse

“My husband was sexually abuse as boy, he says he’s over it but he exhibit certain attitudes that makes me believe he might still need a therapist. What are the signs an adult may display if he was sexually abused as a child.”

Attitudes an adult might display if sexually abused as child

There are certain attitudes an adult might exhibit if he/she was abused as a child and yet to open the door for healing. Some people may display some of these signs yet have not been sexually abuse or even had sexual encounter. So you may want to look out for 5 or many signd.

  1. Uses drugs and alcohol to suppress the hurts and memory. These can only be temporal and the effect of drugs, alcohol mix with psychological trauma is more damaging.
  2. Low self-esteem; the belief that everyone else is better or the acceptance that they do not deserve anything good.
  3. There is tendency to be in an abusive relationship. An abused person is often in search of love because they believe that if they feel loved it would take care of the past experience. Most of the time they end of in the wrong relationship not even knowing what to look out for in an ideal partner.
  4. Hatred for the opposite sex
  5. Lack of trust for anyone especially for the opposite sex
  6. Self-hatred; a victim never sees anything good in himself or herself nor think he or she deserves anything good. They just exist with no intention to becoming anything good in life.
  7. Suicidal signal. Some prefer to die than live with the thought that the person who hurt them is still alive and perhaps happier than them.

 

OTHER SIGNS MIGHT INCLUDES

  1. Multiple-abused-victim. Females especially, who were abused as children if she did not get help when it happened, it is likely to happen again even in adulthood.
  2. Depression. Victims are often sad and not interested in making any meaningful head way out of life.
  3. Distorted orientation about sex and love. Which may bring about sexual and intimacy issues in marriage
  4. Overweight due to excessive eating to cover up for the hurts. Eating may be the only thing some ‘victims’ derived happiness from.
  5. Being angry unnecessarily. Usually this is transfer of anger that is supposed to be directed to the abuser, it is transferred to anyone at the slightest offense.
  6. Guilt and blame. A victim not only feels guilty for what happened but looks for ways to ‘rope’ other people into it and believes if they had played their part better things would have been different.
  7. Mood-swings. A victim maybe happy and excited one minute and sad the next; may be friendly today and hostile the next; has very unbalanced emotions.
  8. Inability to give or receive the best in a romantic relationship. This also result into being unable to teach their children how to avoid or handle sexual abuse
  9. Victim-to-Abuser. There’s likelihood for someone who was abused to do same, take sexual advantage of younger people too.
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How do I open up to God’s Healing after Abuse?

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“I was sexually abused, I have seen a counselor and therapist but I still don’t feel well enough. How do I open up to divine and permanent from sexual abuse hurts?”

  1. Know that God loves you.

John 3:16 says, “for God so loved the world…” this includes you. When He gave His son for the world, although you were not born then but He KNEW you were going to be born and He included you in His plans. The abused experience is not capable of alienating you from His redemptive love. Roman 5:8 “But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Even when we didn’t know Him He sent His son so He might reconcile us back to Himself.

 

  1. Consciously love yourself

Love your vulnerability and your uniqueness. Many people become used to the “I hate myself” anthem because they feel they have been violated beyond redemption. If God loved you just the way you were (before you knew Him), then you should love yourself too. Although He has always loved you, He hates what happened to you. The truth is, we would not make much progress in the healing journey if we cannot love ourselves for who we are. Weak or strong, full of mistakes or not.

 

Psalm 139:14, “I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.

 

God makes no mistake and having a “bad” experience does not reduce who He made you to be. Genesis records that He made us in His own image and He did not make everyone to be the same neither will everyone have same experience. That would have made life boring. The uniqueness of your own experience points to your unique purpose for which He created you, others have their own different experiences too. We are all exceptional in our ways and you should be proud about what makes you distinct including that fact that you are not a victim anymore.

 

  1. Be kind to yourself.

Some people can be nice to others except themselves because they feel they don’t deserve it considering what they have been through. Granted, that you had a bad experience but as you open the healing door for God’s intervention, be good to yourself. Stop punishing yourself by denying and depriving yourself of fun and good living because you are still ‘mourning’ the past. You have gone through a lot and you deserve some good loving, let it start with you to yourself. Stop hating yourself and probably thinking being a woman or being pretty is something bad. Look in the mirror and say nice things to yourself.

 

  1. Don’t forget your Source

You belong to God. The bible says you are not of your own; you are a child of the King. Wake up each morning with that consciousness and know that whatever be the issue the King is well able to take care of it. If you ever get to the point again when it seem like the

past is trying to force its way into the present and have a negative effect in your victory journey, call out to the Father, and He will answer you. “You will call upon Him, and He will answer you; He will be with you in trouble, He will deliver you and honor you.” Psalm 91:15

 

  1. You still have a future

Live responsibly. So you were raped. Or abused. That is not enough to alter who you are destined to be if you allow God take care of the dirt. You can still have a great future so be responsible. Do not take it as an opportunity to live care-free or carelessly. Remember that in the long run, nobody is going to buy into your excuse for failing because you were abused instead many would be interested in knowing how you used those experiences to become a personality to be reckon with. Who you were is not as important as who you become so focus your energy on becoming who you are meant to be rather than wasting a life-time on issues that deserve to be trashed.

 

  1. Take care of yourself

Mentally, emotionally, spiritually and physically. Sexual abuse is a trauma. The nightmares linger for years. Even while awake sometimes, the memory stay fresh in the mind and at every given opportunity it replays itself. It shatters the victims afresh and leaves more damage than the last time. The victim is affected mentally, emotionally, spiritually and sometimes physically. One of the best ways to deal with this it to consciously “fight” out the thoughts of the experience. Don’t entertain it. “…and do not give the devil a foothold.” Ephesians 4:27. Don’t let your mind feed on it. You will need to replace those thoughts with new healthy ones. Apart from reading the bible and mediating on the word, read other helpful books, use some good and healthy words to remove every lie of the devil still trying to take root in your heart.

Get on with life and be determined to make a difference

 

“One day I just said to myself so it happened, what next? This was after being abused by my father for six years and by other men for three years. By the time I was 17 I had both male and female sex partners. I thought sex was the best way to express love. The girls that turned me down when I asked for sex I hated me because I thought they did not love me as they claimed. After I gave my life to the Lord Jesus, I still struggled. I stopped having male partners but I had more than two girlfriends. I knew I had to cooperate with God to be totally free. I didn’t just also want to be free, I had friends who were sexually abuse and I felt I could introduce them to this Jesus. I let go of the girls and I started to talk to my friend about being free. It was not an easy walk but I was determined to live a new life.”

 

Forge ahead and get going, the past has nothing good to offer, besides you can’t change anything about it but there’s a lot you can do about now and the future. Don’t just get free and hide be determined to also be an instrument of redemption in the hands of God.

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HOW CAN I STOP BLAMING MYSELF?

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“I am finding it difficult to move on with my life because I was sexually abused by my uncle, I think my parents had an idea of what he was doing but they didn’t stop him. I also felt abandoned by God. I have forgiven him (my uncle) and currently seeking help but I still blame myself for allowing it.”

Moving Forward…

Quit passing blames, especially on yourself. True, you could have done differently if you were able to, but you couldn’t, you didn’t and so it happened. That’s not your fault. Many people after being sexually abused end up hating themselves and everything about themselves because they think it’s their fault. You may never move ahead to have a good life if you keep believing that it was your fault that you were abused. Or your parents’ because they weren’t there to protect you. What about those who were abused by their parents, who would they blame? Yet in my experience, I have met those who were abused by one of their parents but are doing excellently well in their calling having received counseling.

Sometimes the ‘victim’ blames the parents or those that are supposed to watch over them. The truth is, no one is super human when it comes to these things. However, if a parent is deliberately observant they would notice when there is a strange behavior or change in the attitude of a child. Let’s say they did not notice or ignored when they did, I encourage you not to blame them too. At this stage it will make no good instead it can result into bitterness and hinder your healing journey. Let it go.

 

Blaming Everyone including God

When something goes wrong, we naturally want to find who is at fault and also exonerate ourselves from that possibility. We even point fingers to those who may not even be aware of what may have happened. Our excuse may be that if they had done something differently it could have made the situation better or not happened at all. Most of us believe that our life would be perfect if someone did something we think is connected to us. We usually would find the link to something that would make us believe affect our well-being in life. When eventually we can’t find then it has to be the fault of the Supreme Being, God.

Taking responsibility for one’s actions as noble as it is, it is not that easy. However, that is NOT the same for someone who was raped or sexually abused. It is never the victim’s fault especially in cases where the victim was taken advantage of by an older or powerful person. It has nothing to do with whether the victim took responsibility or not.

God Does Not Promise Good And Does Otherwise

Sometimes when some people go through a hard time they believe it’s from God and they often say “why did God allow this or that?” God is not the originator of suffering and pain although we know that when we do not walk in His will there could be consequences. The bible says that His plan for us is of good and NOT of evil. God cannot have good plans for us and same time reserve evil plans somewhere for us. This is also a lie the devil wants people to believe so they can turn away from following God and keep them trap in denial, depression and rejection

God does not just want you to stop hurting, He wants to heal you and make you WHOLE. He wants to draw you near to Himself and put His mark of ownership on you. He wants to bring you to a place where He can make it seem like that past never happened; a place where that mess can become a message for others who may be walking that same path. He has a good plan for your life and there’s nothing the devil can do about that if you will open you to Him. Your past cannot hinder what God wants to do in your life. No matter how horrible you think your past is, God is the only being that can give you a future that will make your past irrelevant.

  • Let it go.
  • Embrace God’s love and plans for your life.
  • Shut out the voice in your head that keeps telling you it’s your fault
  • Don’t dwell on you should have reacted or responded
  • Be hopeful, you can be all you are destined to be.
  • Constantly remind yourself that you are not a victim, as much as possible verbalize it to yourself.
  • Enjoy quality friendship and invest in the lives of others.
  • Deliberately work on seeing yourself whole
  • Feed your passion or purpose, it will give you a reason to keep conquering.
  • Trust yourself. Believe in yourself.
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HOW DOES PURPOSE RELATE WITH WHO I WANT TO MARRY?

HOW-DOES-PURPOSE-RELATE-WITH-WHO-I-WANT-TO-MARRY

“After having series of discussions with me and my husband-to-be, my dad keeps saying my fiancé has no purpose in life and that we are courting without purpose. I need to understand how purpose relates with courtship.”

Courting Someone without Purpose

One day a woodcutter took his grandson into the forest for his first experience in selecting and cutting oak trees. These they would later sell to the boat builders. As they walked along, the woodcutter explained that the purpose of each tree is contained in its natural shape: some are straight for planks, some have the proper curves for the ribs of a boat, and some are tall for masts. The woodcutter told his grandson that by paying attention to the details of each tree, and with experience in recognizing these characteristics, someday he too might become the woodcutter of the forest.

A little way into the forest, the grandson saw an old oak tree that had never been cut. The boy asked his grandfather if he could cut it down because it was useless for boat building – there were no straight limbs, the trunk was, short and gnarled, and the curves were going the wrong way. “We could cut it down for firewood,” the grandson said. “At least then it will be of some use to us.” The woodcutter replied that for now they should be about their work cutting the proper trees for the boat builders; maybe later they could return to the old oak tree.

After a few hours of cutting the huge trees, the grandson grew tired and asked if they could stop for a rest in some cool shade. The woodcutter took his grandson over to the old oak tree, where they rested against its trunk in the cool shade beneath its twisted limbs. After they had rested a while, the woodcutter explained to his grandson the necessity of attentive awareness and recognition of everything in the forest and in the world. Some things are readily apparent, like the tall, straight trees; other things are less apparent, requiring closer attention, like recognition of the proper curves in the limbs. And some things might initially appear to have no purpose at all, like the gnarled old oak tree.

The woodcutter stated, “You must learn to pay careful attention every day so you can recognize and discover the purpose God has for everything in creation. For it is this old oak tree, which you so quickly deemed useless except for firewood, that now allows us to rest against its trunk amidst the coolness of its shade.

“Remember, grandson, not everything is as it first appears. Be patient, pay attention, recognize, and discover.”                                          www.skywriting.net

 God created everything including humans for a purpose. Nobody is on planet earth just to fill a space. When you perceive that your relationship has become more than just friends and shows every tendency to become married, you should be more worried about where your partner is headed in life than how much he or she loves you. Love go sour where there’s no vision or purpose. Your partner and the relationship can become a drag where both or one of you have no knowledge about your purpose in life. The beauty of life itself is hinge on purpose.

Simply put, purpose is the reason for which something is done or created or for which something exists. Purpose is what will make your partner give you the best of herself or himself because they have discovered who they really are. A man who does not know who he is will try to find his worth from his wife and would frustrate the relationship if he thinks his wife is not giving him what he wants.

Now that you have decided to get married, do you know who you really are? Have you discovered why God created you or are you just existing? Are you believing that marriage will make you fulfill your assignment in life or are you already fulfilling that assignment? Have you found out where that person is going in life so you are not led into a ditch? Does the person have a kind of passion you will excitedly support and urge to succeed? Remember, you cannot like a person and hate what they are passionate about.

When you meet someone and decide you want to marry, you should be more focus on how you can help them fulfill their purpose on earth than you are concern about sex, children and building a home. Marriage is a ministry; it is not about what you want to get from it but what you are ready to for your own good.

When God created Adam, wife was not the first thing Adam was given neither did Adam bothered God about how lonely he was. Adam already had a purpose, he was ‘earth manager’, Genesis 2:15, “And the LORD God took the man, and put him into the Garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it.” So Adam was already busy fulfilling purpose when God saw that there was another need; the work was much for Adam, help was needed and Adam could use a company and He came up with the idea of a woman, “And the LORD God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him.” Genesis 2:18.

So God’s idea of marriage was because the man needed a helper to fulfil purpose. Unfortunately today, people who have not discovered purpose are getting married for sex and for other mundane reasons. Some get married because they think they are getting old and need to have children or because of the pressure from their parents to ‘produce’ grandchildren. While these reasons are not bad in themselves, God intends for us to achieve more together as a couple.

If you have discovered your purpose in life, you become careful with whoever you are getting married to because you do not want to be trapped by someone who will be a hindrance to you becoming who God created you to be. You get into courtship with the mindset that you and your partner are in it to please God.

Having A Purposeful Courtship

Purpose is the WHY you are doing what you are doing. For courtship to happen there must be an intention to get married. The couple must have discussed and agreed to spend the rest of their lives together as husband and wife. Starting a courtship with no intention to get married is like embarking on a journey with no planned destination. You cannot start courting as a means to secure your relationship; so that your partner will not go after someone else having waited for long. Courtship is best started when you are READY for marriage.

When counseling, I often suggest that a guy should not propose to a lady until he has at least an idea WHEN he plans to get married. The relationship will become a frustration if you have agreed to get married without a proposed time frame.

Courtship without purpose can lead to:

Þ Frustration and stress. Nobody likes to go through the waiting period especially when you do not know when the wait will be over. When you start courtship without a plan to get married one partner could be frustrated out of waiting indefinitely while the other stressed from the pressures to fix the wedding period. Best not to start courting until you are ready.

Þ Living in fornication. When you do not know your purpose in life you will be looking for significance or worth in other people and in other things, chief amongst them is sex and the ‘kind-of-love’ derived from premarital sexual activities. You believe that sex with someone you seem to be in love with will provide you that worth and happiness that finding and living your purpose would have given to you.

Þ Unplanned pregnancy. Of course when you live in fornication, one of the consequences of such act is having babies that are not planned for. Although there are contraceptives that are being used these days to prevent pregnancies does not make having sex with someone you are not married to right.

Þ Prolonged courtship. As much as there’s no define time as to how long a courtship should last, it is strongly advised that the couple plans to get married as soon as both of them agrees to be married and there is parental consent. The relationship can become burdensome when the courtship last more than two years. If both of you do not have marriage in view, then remain as friends instead of getting committed and promising to get married.

Þ Uncertainty about marrying the same partner. When there’s no purpose as to courtship or getting married, ‘trial and error’ is not far from the relationship because you will think that will make you be on a safe side just in case the relationship did not work. Once you are courting, focus on making it work and do not toy with someone’s emotion.

Þ Comparison. There is definitely going to be the tendency to compare yourself and the relationship with those you started out together with. Or comparing to someone you broke up with, now wishing you had married him or her.

Anxiety about the choice made. If you start courting without a plan to get married but so that you can be like your friends or because you are under pressure, reality sets in when the excitement of the proposal wears off. You begin to get worried when there’s no plan to get married. And soon you can also begin to feel caged in the relationship.

Þ Pressure and interference from family and friends. This is one of the major reasons I do not counsel couples to take their partner to their parents or family members until they are certain it will lead into marriage. There can be pressure on the couple to get married soon while they are still planning or family members could interfere in the sense that they may want to ‘choose’ who they think is most marriage-suitable for you.

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