In my counseling practice, I deal with the effects of sexual, emotional and physical abuse in my clients’ lives. People who have been abused, especially as children, frequently develop coping strategies that are unhealthy and keep them stuck in dysfunctional patterns:
- The fear of feeling emotions
- Intrusive thoughts and flashbacks
- The inability to connect with and trust others
- The desire to avoid memories and feelings about the abuse
- The inability to regulate emotions
- The unwillingness to be accountable to and trust God
Psalm 55 is a beautiful picture of God’s plan for healing.
Psalm 55: Hope for the Abused
MY PRAYER OF COMPLAINT
1) Give ear to my prayer, O God; and do not hide Yourself from my supplication.
2) Give heed to me and answer me; I am restless in my complaint and am surely distracted,
3) Because of the voice of the enemy, because of the pressure of the wicked; for they bring down trouble upon me and in anger they bear a grudge against me.
4) My heart is in anguish within me, and the terrors of death have fallen upon me.
5) Fear and trembling come upon me, and horror has overwhelmed me.
MY DESIRE TO AVOID
6) I said, “Oh, that I had wings like a dove! I would fly away and be at rest.
7) “Behold, I would wander far away, I would lodge in the wilderness.
8) “I would hasten to my place of refuge from the stormy wind and tempest.”
MY DESIRE FOR JUSTICE
9) Confuse, O Lord, divide their tongues, for I have seen violence and strife in the city.
10) Day and night they go around her upon her walls, and iniquity and mischief are in her midst.
11) Destruction is in her midst; oppression and deceit do not depart from her streets.
12) For it is not an enemy who reproaches me, then I could bear it; nor is it one who hates me who has exalted himself against me, then I could hide myself from him.
13) But it is you, a man my equal, my companion and my familiar friend;
14) We who had sweet fellowship together walked in the house of God in the throng.
15) Let death come deceitfully upon them; let them go down alive to Sheol, for evil is in their dwelling, in their midst.
MY ACCOUNTABILITY TO GOD/HIS FAITHFULNESS TO ME
16) As for me, I shall call upon God, and THE LORD WILL save me.
17) Evening and morning and at noon, I will complain and murmur, and HE WILL hear my voice.
18) HE WILL redeem my soul in peace from the battle which is against me, for they are many who strive with me.
19) GOD WILL hear and answer them—even the one who sit enthroned from of old—with whom there is no change,
And who do not fear God.
20) He has put forth his hands against those who were at peace with him; he has violated his covenant.
21) His speech was smoother than butter, but his heart was war; his words were softer than oil, yet they were drawn swords.
MY PROTECTION AND COMFORT
22) Cast your burden upon the Lord and HE WILL sustain you; HE WILL never allow the righteous to be shaken.
MY GOD WILL BRING VENGEANCE
23) But YOU, O GOD WILL bring them down to the pit of destruction; men of bloodshed and deceit will not live out half their days.
But I will trust in You.
If you know someone who struggles with the long-term effects of abuse, I would love to talk with them. God desires our wholeness and healing as we learn to place our trust in Him. You can reach me at (316) 313.2843 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.