Once I took responsibility of my future I began to grow from my past. These phases of growth were not easy, or instantaneous...but they WERE worth it...because as much as my story mattered, so did my response to it...
We're back with more from our "GROWTH Series" and we hope our testimonies here at HERSTORY inspire you to build your own. We're here in the process!
As mention many times before, overcoming sexual assault is never an easy route, but we must remember as mentioned in Romans 8:15 that we have not received a spirit of bondage in fear. When I was raped, I was attending Las Vegas Fashion Week, an event I would attend every six months. Although I was going through so many emotional and personal issues due to the experience I had endured, I had to make a choice to continue to live my life or live in fear. Everywhere I would look, I imagined the person who raped me being close by me. The thought of him seeing me shook me to my core, so I was never fully present in my day to day activities. In the back of my mind I felt he knew my every step; and I was no longer living any life for myself anymore.
BUT...I chose to live past the fear. Yes, I was overwhelmed with a lot of fear at first, but as some people would say “you have to fake it till you make it” I would pretend as if seeing him was seeing a complete stranger...although inside my heart would be racing, feeling like I would have a heart attack at any time, but I had to stay in prayer and trust GOD every step of the way. Deuteronomy 5:5-6 really helped me during my trial because that scripture would remind me of how God stood in-between my fight and took me out of fear and out of the bondage I thought I could never escape.
Someone might say “if your God is so good, why would you have to go through that?” and I would pray and ask why me? While I feel God would say “why not you?” Although this situation was one of the hardest trials in my life to overcome I say today...my God is so good, I’m still alive, I was blessed enough to not get pregnant or attract an STD. Had it not been for God’s love I know I would have not been here today to share my story and healing process. Although this does not share my complete struggle before my healing I promise you that prayer and leaving my frustration, fear, stress, panic attacks etc. in God's hands was the best decision I could have made. I encourage you to choose a scripture pertaining to your situation/trial pray on it and you will see that in time, healing, growth and love is there. And that pain too...shall come to pass.
From Devin Marie:
Experiencing trauma of any kind is a lot to process. There are a lot of stages of healing I wish I could say happened as instantly as the moment that painful moment crept in out lives. I don't know if there is a "perfect" way to heal...but I have found the perfect healer. After I have exhausted allll options in growing past my trauma of sexual abuse, I met JESUS Christ. I found my faith through one of the most painful moments of my life's existence. Only this time, I found love that required me to come as broken and as unsure as I was to be mended by a spirit brought from my Heavenly Father who let me know "My ways are not your ways, and the plans I have for you are to prosper you.." (Jeremiah 29:11).
For the longest, I didn't want to accept this believe that "A perfect God" could allow such sinful and terribly unjust things occur in this world.
I've had many talks to with my God. I held so much anger, so many opened questions...I searched for answers in drugs (becoming dependent on alcohol and marijuana to numb the pain), I began to accept ONLY disfunctional relationships. I couldn't get past the notion that God created sex to be an expression of love, but under sin, it was used for hate through the act of rape and sexual assault. I lived in this constant manipulation of the enemy, which made loving myself that much harder. I began to self-blame...for just about...EVERYTHING. But that was me still living in a victimized-state of mind.
I didn't grow out of my pain the moment I met Christ, I did not grow in my faith or find any anwser to why bad things happen to people, nor did I believe in a higher power to make sense of this trauma...
In contrast, my faith in Jesus Christ was tested even more so. My faith in a living God who ALLOWED this painful moment to occur was a choice I made everyday to believe that my purpose in life was more than what happens to me.
I have since grown past staying a victim of circumstance. As a result, I stopped abusing drugs, and turned to scripture, prayer, fasting for peace. I made the difficult choice to leave a four year relationship where I accepted love, but also, a lot of inconsistencies from a lag of a true commitment, lust, mistrust, and a lot of unnecessary tears...I stopped accepting attention from guys who were also after those very things I listed above. I than grew past the terrible thought that I might actually deserve the bad I had experienced, that there was something wrong with me.
Once I took responsibility of my future I began to grow from my past. These phases of growth were not easy, or instantaneous...but they WERE worth it.
I am living in freedom, I am genuinely the happiest I have ever been in my life, I still choose Christ every day; that's probably the most rewarding relationship I have ever been in! As a result, God has led me to the one relationship I get to rediscover and appreciate everyday, the relationship of I've always wanted with learning to love and accept my truest self.
Till next week Kings and Queens!
And as always, with love & Solidarity,
Cristal Lowe and Devin Marie 💕👑
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