He came to my rescue


“From the day I forgave, I decided to be open and transparent about the abuse.

I would not let it keep me under a shadow nor let it define me”

Last night I sang Came to My Rescue by Hillsong, as I praised and worshiped God, he said “Go back to that place where you were rescued from. Go back and remember what God has rescued you from.” I wept as I remembered the anger I once felt. I became so undone, overwhelmed with gratitude because, my God, rescued me from the anger and confusion of being sexually abused by the man I called ‘Dad’.

                To be quite honest that seed of anger was planted in me from as young as I can remember. Love and protection from a father was something I never knew. When I was conceived, my biological father asked my mother to abort me because he had neglected to mention he was married and had children. From that point forward my life has been like the lotus that fought out of the mud to reach the sunlight. Rays of Sunlight that God has shined over me.

Soon after being born, my mother was broken hearted and alone, she moved in with a man and gave birth to my two sisters. ‘Animal’ as my mom used to call him was very abusive towards me. He excluded me from activities with my sisters and pinched and bit me until he left bruises. I still remember looking down at thin little bruised legs. My mom always encouraged me and loved me to make up for the abuse, she tried to stop it many times. She left him so many times but due to having nowhere to live she went back to him. When I turned 6 I met God. We started going to church and I became aware of this feeling of love and peace, it was so foreign. Things finally started to fall in to place and my mother left the abusive ‘Animal’ when I turned 7. Things were quiet for some months. My mom balanced supporting three daughters and being a mom. I became her confidant, she exposed me to things of the world that weren’t as magical as I once thought and my child like perception of the world was cut short. Shortly before my 8th birthday my mother introduced us to this new man she had fallen in love with. At first we were hesitant, we were guarded. He rapidly broke down our walls, showering us with love,  the thought of a loving father gripped my heart. Things were good, we finally had a family and a loving man to protect and love us or so I thought.

Unfortunately, that dream shattered as I woke up one night because someone had their hands on me where no one had ever touched me before. It was so dark and I was so confused. I moved and he left. I decided to put it out of my mind, at this point being 10 years old,  it was easier to think of it as a nightmare than to realize my perfect loving family was no more. However, it continued. Some nights I was able to stay up late and pretend I was awake. Some nights when sleep would win, I woke up to the same feeling I had the first night. Things progressed and he would call me in to his room when my mom was at work. Images that I have yet to be able to remove from my mind. This is probably the time you ask ‘why didn’t I say anything to my mother?’, I regret not telling her. However, she gave my sisters and I the ‘puberty’ talk around that time. With the closing of her talk she said “if any man ever hurts you or touches you inappropriately, I will kill him.” That scared the living lights out of me. So I kept the abuse a secret.

Eventually, after years of being molested and finding out my sisters had been as well, I grew increasingly angry. I would be unruly with him to get him off side so he wouldn’t touch my sisters and I. That was the only thing that seemed to work, however, the rebellion overflowed to other parts of my life. My sisters and I vowed not to say anything. Mother Nature came to visit me and the molestation finally stopped. We thought the nightmare was over.

One day I was called in to the principal’s office later to be taken in a police car to Child protective services. They asked about the molestation and a new nightmare began. Our stepfather went to jail and everything was made public. My mom was so distraught but after several months she rededicated her life to the Lord, and she decided to help my stepfather get out of jail. He moved in with us after leaving jail.

I was so angry, so disappointed, and so distraught. I was to live under the same roof as the man who wouldn’t confess and apologize for his actions. I now was angry at my mother as well for choosing companionship over our hurt. My only refuge became God. I pressed in to him everyday,  I would run into my room and yell out with a pillow covering my mouth. So many moments I cried out to him, “Lord, help me”.

Through the Grace of God I was able to forgive and let go of the anger, for the sake of my peace. I was able to love and live with the man who caused so much hurt in my life. Things weren’t perfect but I chose to live in love. This is when the love of God became real to me. I came so close to Him and his presence became my life line. It was the only thing sweet enough for me to taste and the only thing strong enough for me to cling on to.

From the day I forgave, I decided to be open and transparent about the abuse. I would not let it keep me under a shadow nor let it define me. God made me brave, he taught me to release the pain every time I spoke about it. The more I spoke the more I heard other peoples story’s of abuse, I share a bond  with so many other women and men that have been abused. Some were shocked when I shared my testimony, others wondered how I was so strong to get through it especially with joy still in my heart.

 Every time I share my story I give glory to God because of his grace I am able to stand bold, strong, and firm in  faith. I give thanks to him because of his protection. I am grateful that I have lived through what I have, because through that I know who my true Father is. The father who will never forsake me, who will never hurt me, or disappoint me.

I love you, Lord, my strength. The lord is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer; my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold. Psalm 18 1-2

Today I stand tall, my head held high by the hand of the Lord. I speak for those who have been broken and need to be rescued. I speak for those who are angry but still choose to love. I speak for those who feel helpless but stand in God’s strength.  I am 26 years old and a leader at our Young Adults group, I have learnt so much through my relationship with God, he has taught me to overcome all things in His name. God shows me the value I have in him as his precious daughter. Every day I grow deeper and deeper in love with my rescuer, God. I live in joy and with confidence, unashamed of my past because, He Came To My Rescue.

May God forever bless you,

Stephanie Victoria

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