Today starts a new day; I realize that I have been abused by religion. It took me through Day 8, 9 before I realized this, but I am glad I did. You can go back to see my comments on Day 8 and 9 to see what I am speaking of. I am taking the time to do the exercises as outlined in the book; Recovering From Religious Abuse, 11 Steps to Spiritual Freedom written by: Jack Watts. While I know that hurt and abuse as described and presented in the book are two different things, I have come to the understanding that in regards to taking advantage of me I have in fact been abused. I will admit, one of my greatest concerns is I may have at times abused religion. I don’t think I have but this journey will help me understand where I am at and in the process help others as I journal each day with the steps outlined in the book.
Over the years of my own recovery, I am confident of a number of things, my ongoing relationship with God, including prayer, where I converse with Him on a regular basis has been critical. I can say emphatically, not to brag or lift myself up, but as a statement of fact, I speak to God daily. Those conversations with God are not simple things like a prayer before a meal or something of the sort; I have learned how to apply the words of Paul, where I am admonished, as we all are, to pray without ceasing. I have learned that having access to God, in all situations, whether joyous, or sad, to express needs, or to offer praise, is something that keeps me going.
There are those who continue their desire to hurt me or be critical of me, but I don’t think they understand, I have found peace with God. There may be moments of difficulty but I can go to God. I am confident that applying the attitudes and actions of Jesus in my life takes me a long ways, when speaking to God on a regular basis. I am aware that others pray but they may use other means as their measuring tool, the institutional church, flag, country, denomination, co-workers, family and I could go on. Talking with God, studying the person of Jesus along with scripture has assured me, I can’t emphasize enough the peace I have experienced, even when others think I am loopy or crazy because of prayer.
Over the years I did a great deal of research on prayer. A number of great prayer warriors have written wonderful works, from Ravenhill to Spurgeon, there is a great deal of wonderful teaching. As a result of my studies I did a lengthy presentation titled, Prayer as a Prelude to Revival. I am confident that message was from God. I am grateful that I have a relationship with God where I can speak to Him anytime, even those times when those who say they love the church, appear to hate anyone or anything that disagrees with their perspective and includes me in their dogmas.
Father, help me to maintain that relationship with you. Help me realize you are my sustainment. You are my Father who loves and guides, but you also heal and provide. My prayer Lord is that others will experience a relationship where they can feel the healing you have provided, and the relationship you desire.
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