Used, abused, treated like a silly girl, and always made to feel in the wrong...
I could go on, but listing how I was made to feel will only be detrimental to me. It’s bad enough that I still remember, and feel, the emotion behind these things, let alone listing them all. And no, my situation is NOT as bad as it seems from the first two words in my list, but it did leave me feeling less of a woman, less of a person and a second class citizen for a while.
What happened to me? I ask myself the same question, as sometimes I feel numb towards the harshness of it all. The harsh reality of what I actually allowed myself to go through and to tolerate. But then again, I am not surprised, as I’ve lived my life feeling numb towards a lot of things.
About six years ago depression reared its ugly head in my life. I didn’t know it at the time, but looking back now, I can see the evidence. I can see me becoming less and less motivated. Losing interest in my appearance. Not wanting to do things. Preferring to stay at home rather than go out. Not even having the confidence to buy clothes. Some pretty sad recollections actually.
Fast forward almost six years and I’ve moved from being a mum in a de facto relationship with someone who I should have known better than to be with, to a single woman and solo parent who allowed herself to be led down a path where nobody who was raised in a good Christian home should go. What was I thinking?
The answer is that I wasn’t. I wasn’t thinking when I hooked up with my daughter’s father, and I wasn’t thinking when I allowed my mind, body, heart and soul to be infiltrated by the exact thing that God opposes – sexual immorality. Yes, I’ve said it. SEXUAL. IMMORALITY.
I’m not going to hide the fact anymore that I have led a promiscuous life. From being a somewhat shy little 16 year old telling the older male workmate that “No, I’m not into sex” at the Christmas dinner, to being the girl 2 years later that, well...let’s just say, I did lots of things by then that I should not have.
I’m not ashamed anymore, and I’m not embarrassed. God is forgiving and merciful, and if any readers can’t be, then take it up with God; He is the only One I answer to.
I have many emotional scars that are rough and rugged and hurt often. A photo here, a song there, a memory that will pop into my head, a feeling, an emotion...I don’t need condemnation from the world because of my promiscuous past; I live every day with reminders with me. Things that the enemy wants to condemn me with.
“You bad girl, Paula. How could you do that? How could you disappoint your family? How could you let someone do that to you?”
Lie after lie after lie. He spits it at me. He shows me a face that makes my heart leap and says, “Yes, you know you want that!” He brings up a news headline that forces my mind back to another time and he says, “See what you’re missing out on Paula!”
But no...not anymore. I’m not going to stand for the enemy’s lies in my life. I know fact over feeling. I know that what I experienced was NOT what God wanted, but a choice I made based on who I WAS at the time. But God has changed me since then, and I moved on. It took quite some time, and the pain is still very raw and very real for me. But I am in a better place. I am with God. I am rebuilding His temple. I am restoring my dignity. I am renewing my life. I am replacing lies with truth.
The enemy can no longer lie to me. He cannot send someone my way to sweep me off my feet again without first getting passed my Heavenly Father who is protecting me from the worlds lies, depravity and ways.
Dear Heavenly Father, thank You for saving me from a fragmented life; a life where I was balancing on the fence. The journey has been painful, and continues to hurt, but I know that You are with me every step of the way. Never leaving my side, and never telling me that I am anything but Your precious daughter. In Jesus’ Mighty Name, Amen.