A Bed in Hell

Snow geese in flight at dawn, Bosque del Apache, NM, Author John Fowler, Source flickr.com (CC BY-SA 2.0 Generic)

Rather than providing consolation, Scripture can feel like torture to abuse victims.  We hear promises of hope and protection as lies…or “proof” of our unworthiness.  After all, God’s promises were not kept in our case, were they? So it can seem to us.

Worse still, we may fear deep down that the fate “assigned” us was deliberately cruel because of our lack of worth.  This is torment, placing the blame for our pain squarely at God’s door.

But listen to verses 7-11 of Psalm 139:

“…Where can I go from Your Spirit?  Or where can I flee from Your presence?  If I make my bed in hell, behold, You are there.  If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea, even there Your hand shall lead me, and Your right hand shall hold me.  If I say, ‘Surely the darkness shall fall on me,’ even the night shall be light about me…”

This is what it means to be a child of God.  We are not spared suffering, but remain the focus of His care and attention at all times.

Our wounds grieve God. More than that, His hands and feet were pierced for our sakes.  We forget this when lost in our own sorrow.

Abuse victims have known the bed in hell.  For us, depression may be the form darkness takes.  Yet in the throes of that illness, we are not forsaken.  God seeks us out despite our anger, despite our despair, despite even our atheism.

Originally posted 11/17/13

FOR MORE OF MY ARTICLES ON POVERTY, POLITICS, AND MATTERS OF CONSCIENCE CHECK OUT MY BLOG A LAWYER’S PRAYERS AT: https://alawyersprayers.com

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12 Comments

Filed under Child Abuse, Christianity, Religion, Sexual Abuse

12 responses to “A Bed in Hell

  1. In our pain and suffering, we tend to forget that he suffered more for us. Bruised, beaten and downtrodden, he endured pain for our sake. We do not have a high priest who is unfamiliar with our anguish. There is comfort in remembering that he is not only there with us at such times, but he feels what we feel and our hands are in his hands.
    Wonderful post, Anna!
    Love and blessings ❤

  2. Amen Anna.. Great post.
    God is so merciful..

  3. krc

    much agree with u

    yes it was very hard to see the light during those times of darkness

  4. I feel so sad when I hear stories of abuse and the suffering Anna. But as you have brought out beautifully; He is all there is. One of my favourite prayers has been: Everything is your Grace my Lord; be it pleasure or be it pain and suffering. Everything is your Grace my Lord 🙏

  5. It can be so tempting to reduce our suffering down to “God, you could have prevented this. Now why didn’t you? Are you not a God of love?”

    It doesn’t help matters that we are continually bombarded with images of the “beautiful people”, people who have never known the pain of being broken and shattered.

    Throughout the ages the one agonizing question that stands out from all other is “why”. It is a question largely gone unanswered, and to say the answer to “why” is because we live in a fallen world hardly seems adequate.

    In my own brokenness I found myself reminding God of what His own word says in Romans 8:28:

    And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose”. I’m sure we can all agree that when your life has been shattered, there is precious little good that we can make of it.

    Amazingly, however, I have learned that it is that very brokenness that God can use to our benefit. The circumstances that nearly destroyed us are used of God to perfect us for his greater purpose.

    As painful as it may be, suffering has a way of bringing us closer to our Father. This can be very hard to understand, but God knows us better than we know ourselves.

    It is not a path we would choose for ourselves, yet we are but the clay and he is the Master Potter. What he ultimately makes of us is completely up to Him, as are the circumstances surrounding the building process.

    One thing is certain dear Anna, and that is that we must get to the place where we trust Him and not ourselves.

    Thank you for this enlightening post.

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