Tuesday, 08 March 2011 11:08
Love... or Lack of It and How It Effects Our LivesWhen I was thinking about how to decorate the tables for Valentine’s Day at Celebrate Recovery I thought, hearts, of course, but I wanted them to be thought-provoking hearts. Of course, Valentines Day is all about hearts and flowers and our significant one. That’s as it should be, but as I worked and cut out paper hearts I thought how many different ways love, or the lack of it, can effect our lives and the lives of those around us.
We all know people who just don’t seem to have a drop of love in them. Know anybody like that? We all do. But let’s think about that for awhile. Wonder why they are so bitter and seemingly without an ounce of love in their souls? Maybe it was beat out of them when they were younger. Maybe instead of “I love you,” they were told to “go on, get out of the way before I get my belt to you.” Maybe their parents died when they were young and they were shunted from one relative or foster home to another. Maybe they were physically, verbally or sexually abused when they were young. If any of this happened to me I’d be mad at the world, too, for letting this happen. We should never let a hostile facade keep us from showing our love for that person. They need it worse than most.
There is a saying that goes something like this, “If you meet a man who has no smile, leave him one of yours. Perhaps the next time you meet him he will give it back.”
I know from experience this is hard to do sometimes. We all know folks who are just about as unlovable as you can get. Okay, you don’t have to jump in head first. Start by speaking to them in a friendly manner. If they don’t “smack your jaws” for this venture then get a little braver next time.
I’ve done volunteer work with troubled women for many years and in all those years I never met but one who said she was not abused when she was a child. It makes your heart sick to hear of what some of them endured. The most horrendous thing about their abuse was the identity of the abuser.
Top of the list was uncles and grandfathers! Yes, Grandfathers!! Next on the list were their own biological fathers!! Uncles, grandfathers and fathers!! What in the world is this world coming to. I’m not talking about long ago.
I’m talking about today, right now!
Many told me they were terrified to sleep in a bedroom alone, scared to death to be left alone with him.
Some of them told me they would go stand in the yard till someone returned should they be left alone in the house with one of these abusers. I’m not talking about adults.
I’m talking about helpless children. I still look at many adults as a little girl or boy, a very troubled little girl or boy.
My intentions when I started the House of Ruth was to teach these women/children how to start all over again. Start by learning to crawl first, then a few uncertain steps until finally they could be running if they really wanted to. In the midst of all this learning process it was always stressed that they would never run free without our Savior. It would always be a continuous “stumble, get up and try again” kind of thing without Him.
Only recently a woman told me her mother died when she was four, her father was an alcoholic so she and her brother were sent to live with an uncle who abused her until she was fourteen and as a result she, in her own words, “became very promiscuous,” an alcoholic, a drug addict, lost her three children and ended up in jail with a long string of felonies against her.
As she was talking to me, tears were freely rolling down her face. She said she was taught to associate sex with love and as starved as she was for love she continually searched for it. She is now older, drug-free, has a job and is trying to get her life back together. She realizes now that someone loved her all along but in those years she didn’t know Jesus Christ. Now she knows He loves her no matter what and will never forsake her and she is slowly trying to get her life back together.
(continued next week)