PRAY TO END CHILD ABUSE (Part of the ministry doing this is called: Debora House)
Scripture: Hebrews 4:14-16
“Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has ascended into heaven, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to the faith we profess. For we do not have a high priest who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet he did not sin. Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.”
She was 7 when she came to Deborah House. Being a little skinny girl, the fresh scar on the forehead seemed huge. She would cry when taking a shower, as the water spray felt like a whip on her bruised body. For a long time after this, when asked about the head scar, she would convincingly respond that she fell and hit her head on the water sprout; this was because her memories were too painful and her instinct was to suppress them by building other memories to hide in. Until 7 years old, she was severely abused by her father and brothers. The scar was made by her father with a bat – the girl lost consciousness because of the hit. The mother had left to buy bread. When she returned and found her daughter, still unconscious and bleeding, she called for an ambulance. At Deborah House, while the soul wounds began to heal, her suppressed memories would come out bringing anxiety and anger. Years of prayer and post-trauma therapy were needed for the nightmares and anger to stop. Except for the scar on her forehead, nothing resembled the little girl who would cry with pain in the shower and would throw things around the house in anger. When she turned 18, she asked us to take her to see her parents and brothers. In the eleven years she stayed with us, she had never asked to see her parents, who lost their parental rights anyway. We were concerned for how this meeting would impact her, but she calmly said: “In order to have a life when I am no longer with you, I need to see them and tell them I have forgiven them.”
We found the father who had been released from prison after five years. On a weekend we drove across the country so she could meet them. She saw her father and older brothers in her grandmother’s yard. She asked everyone how they are, she told them about her life and with such an unreal peace in her eyes and voice, she said: “I remember what you did to me, I will not forget, but I want to forgive you, so I came to tell you that I have forgiven you!” She got up, she hugged her grandmother and told us she is ready to go home. Sorina finished high school, fell in love and started a family and is now the mother of two beautiful and loved little girls.
Abuse of a child builds chains for life. Only God’s power can break the chains and bring healing and forgiveness. Since 2002, more than 140 girls under the age of 18 – victims of trafficking and abuse – found shelter and support in our two Deborah House family-type homes in western Romania.
Pray for the girls that God would bring healing and forgiveness. Pray for God’s deliverance from sin and the chains of the lives of traffickers and abusers. Pray for the staff who serve the girls every day.
Questions & reflection::
1. Have you experienced being hurt by someone close or have you hurt someone? In what ways did this change the routine of your life?
2. How did this affect your relationship with others and with God?
3. Have there been times in your life when you felt like you could not go on? What did you do?