graves into gardens

TRIGGER WARNING – this post discusses rape and my journey to healing. Please be kind to yourself and do not read if you are not in a place to internalize this.

Today marks two years since I was drugged and raped.

I originally wasn’t sure I would make a post about this but I felt that I should.

Last year I spent this day cuddled up with a man who really couldn’t have cared less about me. As he initiated sex, I felt that I was taking back my sexuality by agreeing. I pretended to be in the act but truth is, my mind was on the abuse my body suffered the year before. After everything was over, I sat there confused. I thought ‘taking my sexuality’ back would make me feel powerful and confident. I thought that I would be happy but I went home slightly irritated at myself.

The entire day I felt God asking me, in that delicate whisper of His, to draw closer to Him. He was trying to work on my heart, but I refused to listen. He told me that He would comfort me but I ignored Him because I thought sex and a kickboxing class (that I didn’t even go to) would destroy the graveyard in my heart and bring about new life.

As I embark on another year of survivorship, I think about how far I’ve come and how God is turning me into a strong yet delicate woman. I feel like a flower that has bloomed after a thunderstorm. The sky was dark and the rain fell so hard that I was blinded. The storm beat on me until I felt like I couldn’t go on anymore. Then the rain began to slow and the sky lightened as the sun’s powerful light broke through the storm clouds. I turned toward the light and soaked in the nourishing rays. The sun dried and warmed me as I stood up straighter.

This year has shown me so much about God and His heart for me. I am learning how to be satisfied in His plan. As I stretch toward the sun and its refreshing light, I am reminded of Psalm 30:5b(NIV) ‘weeping may stay for the night, but rejoicing comes in the morning.’

How reassuring is that? No matter what the night (darkness) brings, joy will come in the morning. I had to remember that a night isn’t always the time I spent asleep. Some ‘nights’ last for months and they make me feel like I won’t survive to see the morning (light). My God is faithful though so no matter the length of my night, I will always be able to turn my face toward the Him and the light that radiates from Him.

God turned the graveyard of my heart into a beautiful garden. I ran and searched as far as my legs would carry me for something to destroy the death and decay of my heart. I ran to work, sex, alcohol, weed, shopping and exercise with no success.

Nothing in this world brings life like the Creator of it. The God of my tallest mountains is the same God of my lowest valleys. He took my dead heart in His hands and spoke life into it. He took my damaged soul and repaired it in only the way a Creative can. He showed me that I am not a victim of the deranged actions of a man exercising his free will. He spoke to me and told me that I am the daughter of the only true King, a princess whose gown is interwoven with gold (Psalm 45:13 NIV). He showed me that I am a co-heir with Christ to His marvelous kingdom (Romans 8:17 NIV). He showed me in His Word that because He is in me, I will not fall (Psalm 46:5 NIV).

This year, I don’t need to reclaim my sexuality because I get to spend time in the arms of the Creator of my soul. I get to spend time with the only One who can turn my mourning into dancing, turn my shame into glory and turn my grave into a garden that rivals Eden*.

Numbers 6:24-26(NIV) – The Lord bless you and keep you; The Lord make His face shine on you and be gracious to you; the Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace.

*Taken from the song Graves Into Gardens – Elevation Worship

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