We are not the sum of our weaknesses and failures.
We are the sum of the Father’s love for us.
– Pope St. John Paul II
The moments of our past help to shape who we are in the present. That includes the moments of love, joy, and learning; but it also includes the moments of fear, sadness, and pain.
We are all wounded. We are all broken. But often we walk around with the wounds of our past that we have not healed from, and the pain from those wounds often leads us into more painful situations.
This was the case for listener named Kate, who recently called in to The Joe Sikorra Show to ask how to forgive and be loving to an old boyfriend who treated her very poorly in the past. When Joe questioned why she continued to let this boyfriend into her life and into her heart when he treated her so poorly, Kate shared that she was sexually assaulted in the past, and that has affected her ability to establish healthy boundaries with people.
Joe offered up a prayer for her on the air that is not only for Kate, but for anyone who has been hurt in the past and is seeking healing:
“My prayer is that God surrounds you with people who will respect you and respect your boundaries, nurture you, and love you – so that you can have that experience as the little girl who is being taken care of.
It’s hard to come back from that. If you’ve been abused, if you’ve been raped, if you’ve been abandoned, you internalize and you say, ‘This is true, this is what I deserve.’ And that’s why maybe right now, as an adult, you tolerate the abuse. In fact, on some level you say, ‘Yea, that’s appropriate.’ Now consciously you’re not saying that, but unconsciously there’s a part that says, ‘This is what I deserve.’
And you don’t deserve it. You don’t deserve it. Sometimes you have to slow down, and you have to say, ‘Why am I tolerating this?’ And I think if you can imagine right now, wherever you are, that you’re taking a walk, and Christ reaches out and He grabs your hand, He pulls you in close, and He hugs you. Experience His love – that’s what transforms life. Experience that now.
I ask everybody in our audience, everybody who is listening, to be moved, to be touched, to see the hurt, the brokenness. And when you see that, I ask that you see that it is Jesus being hurt and wounded. You have an obligation, and I have an obligation, to surround her with your love, my love, God’s love; and to lift her up this day and going forward. May she always recognize that the love she experiences with God is paramount and everything else is secondary.”
Listen to the full conversation below: