Many women struggle to believe God loves them for a variety of reasons. You’ve heard the statistic of sexual abuse; 1 in 4 will be sexually abused. For men the numbers are 1 in 7. Nearly 6 out of 10 sexual assaults occur in the victim’s home. 90% of sexually abused children know their abusers. If we include emotional and physical abuse the amount of the abused would be even more.
The nature of abuse strips a soul of her person-hood. The abuser makes her feel less than himself and others. For some of us our identity and value and worth get all tangled up in the lies of our abusers. We can’t see and accept the world for what it is. The danger we face is to define God’s love for us by the curse of sin that afflicts us. And, we are faced with a choice.
Do we continue to look for signs of God’s love in a world that is subject to the curse of sin? Or do we allow God to communicate His love for us through the person of Jesus Christ.
In my darkest moments of grief, I questioned God’s love. How could God love me and allow this much agony? Myself and many other women who have been victimized by sexual, physical, and emotional abuse cry out, how could God love me and allow this to be inflicted on a child? A well meaning person, who also struggles to believe God loves her, said to ask for a sign. For her, she believed that a beautiful pink sky says, “I love you.” I asked God for a rainbow. Thankfully, that rainbow never came for me.
I know I’ve written about this before, but this is the Thankfulness Series. I am thankful that God demonstrated His love for us by sending His Son to live under sin’s curse like us, so that Jesus is able to empathize with us in all our sufferings
For a moment, stop and think about what it meant for the Son of God to agree to be placed into the womb of a teenage virgin. We see Mary as the most blessed woman of God. But, consider what becoming pregnant out of wedlock meant for her. Scripture records for us that it took a dream from the Lord for her fiance, Joseph, not to put her away quietly (Luke 1). He married her, but people have long memories. And, people can be cruel.
Jesus Christ, the Son of the Most High God, subjected himself to be born under the curse of sin for me and you to redeem us, who are under sin’s curse (Galatians 4:4-5). If that doesn’t say, “I love you,” what will? Jesus was born into a family placing himself under the rule and authority of human parents. He had to live with siblings and go through puberty. In all of this, Jesus never sinned. Just thinking about having to go through puberty and Middle School makes me realize that Jesus must have a great love for me and you. He loves me!
Whenever I question God’s love because I experience suffering or affliction or the testing of my faith, I will think about Jesus as a baby, completely dependent on a woman. This Savior who didn’t think that equality with God as something to be held onto, but made himself nothing by becoming a baby (Phi. 2). Thank you Jesus!