Early in the week (Living Waters Leadership Training 3-8 August 2009) God spoke to me through His word:
“After I strayed, I repented; after I came to understand, I beat my breast. I was ashamed and humiliated because I bore the disgrace of my youth. — Set up roadsigns; put up guideposts. Take note of the highway, the road that you take. —
-The whole valley where dead bodies and ashes are thrown — will be holy to the Lord.” Jeremiah 31:19,21,40 NIV
Dead bodies were considered unclean: The filthy, unclean place will be holy to the Lord. Even everything in my life that I have been ashamed of and regretted, can and will one day be clean and the Lord will use all I’ve been through to bless others. I pondered upon this all week.
The healing presence during the worship times was tangible. The teachers were open and honest. Painful things we usually keep as a secret were common topics of conversation.
Recovery is like a journey that we’re all on together. Strangers felt like dear sisters and brothers.
I am chronically ill and find sitting a pain. In the beginning of the week I needed strong pain-killers, but towards the end none as I had been crying so much.
One day we were praying against the hatred of women, myself included. I usually don’t howl aloud in a public place, but as there were many women crying aloud and God was touching and delivering us, it felt like we were on holy ground. I felt like falling into a black hole. So unfair my parents hadn’t shown love to me. I hated myself, not willing to live (in reality I’m steadily recovering).
My group leader urged me to write a few “hate letters” (ones that address difficult issues and are not meant to be sent).
I wrote ones to my parents and husband. To my surprise I felt little anger or pain. I have been bringing these things to Jesus’ cross; I thought that maybe I’m more recovered than I imagined. But when I wrote a letter as to why I hate myself, I was crushed. I went to the forest to pray and cry aloud to God. I confessed as wrong that I’ve kept hating myself who God dearly loves and values.
Every morning I went for a prayer walk alone. Usually one “doesn’t have time” for such.
On the way home I felt unreal, my heart was so full, I didn’t feel like talking to the kind people who gave me a lift home. I’ve been treasuring these memories ever since. So much more was done in a week than is normally done in months and hours of counseling therapy.
I’m so grateful to God, and to you all that made the course possible and to my intercessors.