ABUSE RECOVERY

Practical Tools and Resources to Go Deeper! 

SPIRITUAL STRENGTH | LIFE LEADERSHIP | REAL RELATIONSHIPS

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 FROM SURVIVING TO THRIVING

"Powerless.” No word better describes the way a victim feels . . . and rightfully so!

That feeling can continue long after the abuse has stopped, creeping into relationships, destroying true intimacy, and leaving the victim trapped in an imaginary prison. If you once suffered from abuse but still feel helpless, you may suffer from a victim mentality or a type of thinking that makes you a “peace-at-all-costs” type of person. You might call it being a “people pleaser,” someone who likes keeping others happy. If doing so prevents you from being your true self or prevents you from ending a dangerous relationship, you’re not being a peacemaker. You’re allowing yourself to be a victim. 

Abuse can leave you feeling insignificant, invisible, and worthless. Despite what you’ve been told, you matter to God. You have God-given worth, and you are loved by Him.  Don’t let the victim mentality paralyze your heart. God offers a freedom that lasts forever! In Him, you have the power to stop living as a victim and start living as the person He created you to be . . . His precious child, redeemed and set free!

Despite its prevalence, abuse is never a comfortable topic to discuss. The reach of abuse extends around the world to people of every background, age and stage of life. And though physical wounds heal in time, emotional damage can last for years. Can there be hope for change . . . for complete healing? Yes! The Keys for Living resources show how to find healing from past pain, how to process difficult emotions, and how to help others who have been abused. Discover your God-given worth, and start walking in freedom and moving forward with hope.

God desires to give you hope as you face life challenges, problems and difficult trials. The good news for us, God specializes in redemption and transformation.  He takes that which was lost and restores it. He takes that which was dead and gives it life. He takes that which had no hope and rewrites its story. This is our God! As you pray today, ask God boldly to transform the thing inside you that you want to see changed forever!

“Blessed is he . . . whose hope is in the LORD his God. . . . He upholds the cause of the oppressed and gives food to the hungry. The LORD sets prisoners free.”  

Psalm 146:5-7

If you’ve heard constant, cruel and condemning messages from your parents, spouse, partner, boss, or anyone close to you … you might have come to believe those messages over time. Perhaps you’ve come to believe that you are unworthy, unlovable, or not “good enough.”

Underneath much of our struggles are lies we believe about ourselves, others, our situation, and about God. These lies are often connected with a sense of guilt and shame, and they can negatively impact our behavior, decisions, and relationships.

Know this: No matter what harsh words you’ve been told, abuse does not have the final word about you – God does. His Word speaks of His boundless love for you and the life-changing identity you have in Christ.

Healing and transformation can occur when you begin to see yourself through God’s eyes, believing what He says about you. Therefore, it is important to identify the lies you’ve been led to believe and replace them with God’s truth.

“Teach me your way, O Lord, that I may walk in your truth.”
(Psalm 86:11)

What Is a Victim? 

  • A victim is a person who experiences adversity, who is powerless to change the situation. 
  • A victim is a person who is tricked or duped. 
  • A victim is a person who is injured, destroyed, or sacrificed. 
  • A victim is a person who is subjected to oppression, hardship, or mistreatment.  

 

What Is the Victim Mentality? 

  • The victim mentality is a mind-set in which a person who was once a victim continues in old thought patterns that foster feelings of powerlessness, even when the victimization has ended. 
  • The victim mentality causes individuals to see others as powerful but themselves as weak and powerless. 
  • The victim mentality leads those who were genuinely powerless to stop abuse in the past to assume the same powerless state in the present. 
  • In order to fully embrace the future that the Lord has planned for them, this faulty assumption needs to be replaced with God’s truth.
  • The victim mentality can consciously or subconsciously be used to deny responsibility for a person’s present actions. 
  • The individual continues in self-destructive attitudes and actions while blaming others for the undesirable results. Victory requires a new mind-set. ...

“We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.”

(2 Corinthians 10:5)

Question:  “What will help me overcome a victim mentality?” 

Answer:  You can overcome a victim mentality by changing the way you see yourself. As a child, you were defenseless, and as an adult, you are no longer without power. 

“When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became [an adult], I put the ways of childhood behind me.” 

(1 Corinthians 13:11) 

Question:  “Does God even see the grief in my heart?” 

Answer:  Yes, He sees your grief, and He takes it seriously. 

“For no one is cast off by the Lord forever. Though he brings grief, he will show compassion, so great is his unfailing love. For he does not willingly bring affliction or grief to anyone.” 

(Lamentations 3:31–33) 

How to Replace the Lies of Abuse with the Truth of God’s Word

Lie: “I’m worthless. I don’t matter.”
Truth: You matter to God. You have God-given worth because He created you, and that worth can never be taken from you. You are precious in God’s sight.
“You are precious to me. You are honored, and I love you” (Isaiah 43:4 NLT).

Lie: “No one will ever accept me.”
Truth: The Lord chose you, accepts you, and will never reject you.
“I have chosen you and have not rejected you. So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand” (Isaiah 41:9–10).

Lie: “I am unlovable.”
Truth: God loves you, and nothing can separate you from His love.
“Nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow – not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love” (Romans 8:38 NLT).

Lie: “I deserve to be abused – it’s my fault.”
Truth: No one deserves to be abused – no one. Each person is responsible for their own actions.
“For we are each responsible for our own conduct” (Galatians 6:5 NLT).

Lie: “There is no hope for me.”
Truth: No matter how deep the pain, with God, there is always hope for healing and transformation.
“There is surely a future hope for you, and your hope will not be cut off” (Proverbs 23:18).

Lie: “God doesn’t care about me.”
Truth: God cares deeply about you and wants you to come to Him with your burdens.
“Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you” (1 Peter 5:7 NLT).

Lie: “God is disappointed in me. He wants nothing to do with me.”
Truth: God has compassion for you – He is with you and desires a close relationship with you.
“The Lord is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and rich in love. The Lord is good to all; he has compassion on all he has made. … The Lord is near to all who call on him” (Psalm 145:8–9, 18).

You may have been led to believe other lies. As an exercise, write them down and then look in God’s Word to discover a passage or a truth that can speak directly to that lie. God wants you to “take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ” (2 Corinthians 10:5). Over time, as you replace the lies with God’s truth, you will be transformed and healed by His Word.

“Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.
Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is – his good, pleasing and perfect will.”
(Romans 12:2)

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God desires to give you hope as you face life challenges, problems and difficult trials. The good news for us, God specializes in redemption and transformation. He takes that which was lost and restores it. He takes that which was dead and gives it life. He takes that which had no hope and rewrites its story. This is our God! As you pray today, ask God boldly to transform the thing inside you that you want to see changed forever!

Thank you for your interest and support in Women of Faith. We pray God will encourage, equip, and empower you with His life-changing truth.

 

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