Remind yourself that what happened was not your fault in any way.
If you have not told anyone about your abuse, dare to take a step of faith and share your story with someone that you trust.
Remember that you are not alone… struggling with issues of sexual abuse is not uncommon and there are others who understand. Statistics show 1 out of 4 women have been abused.
Be sure to stay involved in a local, Bible-believing church. You need community, encouragement and accountability during this time of healing.
Be willing to take the initiative and risk being vulnerable with those closest to you as you share your story of abuse.
You don’t have to tell everyone your story. But be willing to share it with people you trust or someone you feel may benefit from sharing your journey.
Choose one of the Hope scriptures and memorize it this week.
Remember that you cannot control the actions or reactions of others, but you can honor God with your own actions and responses.
Choose one of the online articles or books on sexual abuse to read. Dialogue with your spouse, a friend or a mentor about what you are reading.
Be assured that once you have forgiven the abuser, anger and bitterness can be replaced by feelings of peace.
How are things different now that you’ve reached out for help and invested in your spiritual and emotional health? List the areas where you have seen growth since you began this process.
Forgiveness is a decision modeled after God’s forgiveness of us—a decision not to hold an offense against the offender. Forgiveness is not a feeling, it is not forgetting, and it is not excusing. How are you doing with forgiveness as it
relates to your abuser?
Regardless of whether or not your abuser has repented, you can release the offense and maintain a readiness to forgive. As you “forgive from the heart” (Mt.
18:35) your burden is lifted and your outlook will change. How willing are
you to forgive your abuser?
Past sexual abuse can lead to compulsive behaviors like the need to overwork or overachieve, self-injury, anorexia, bulimia or addictions. Are any of these true of your life right now? You might also want to ask a trusted friend or advisor whether they see these things in you.
It is often helpful to seek help from a local Christian counselor or pastor in addition to having a close friend or mentor to confide in.