NOTE: Many people have asked how they can get a copy of the seminar notebook referenced in this verbal presentation. You can request a copy from Summit’s admin over counseling at firstname.lastname@example.org (please note this is an administrative account; no individual or family counsel is provided through e-mail).
“Re-Engaging Life and Relationships”
IDENTIFY GOALS that allow me to combat the impact of my suffering.
Memorize: Lamentations 3:20-24 (ESV), “My soul remembers it and is bowed down within me. But this I call to mind, and therefore I have hope: The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. ‘The Lord is my portion,’ says my soul, ‘therefore I will hope in him.’” As you memorize this passage reflect upon these key points:
- “My soul remembers” – As Jeremiah remembered his suffering it registered with him at a level deeper than his brain.
- “Bowed down” – The presence of the memory still, at times, created a sense of wilting in his soul.
- “I call to mind” – Jeremiah gained the ability to direct his thoughts even when the memories of his suffering intruded.
- “New every morning” – However persistent his suffering memories may be, Jeremiah knew God’s mercies last longer.
- “Your faithfulness” – This is the first time in the passage Jeremiah directly addressed God (“you”). As he engaged the false interpretations of his suffering, Jeremiah was able to regain his more personal connection with God.
“In her renewed connections with other people, the survivor re-creates the psychological faculties that were damaged, were deformed by the traumatic experience. These faculties include the basic capacities for trust, autonomy, initiative, competence, identity, and intimacy. Just as these capabilities are originally formed in relationships with other people, they must be reformed in such relationships (p. 133)… The simple statement—‘I know I have myself’—could stand as the emblem of the third and final stage of recovery. The survivor no longer feels possessed by her traumatic past; she is in possession of herself (p. 202).” Judith Hermann in Trauma and Recovery
“Past wrongdoing suffered can be localized on the timeline of our life story and stopped from spilling forward into the present and future to flood the whole of our life (p. 82).” Miroslav Volf in The End of Memory
“One of the most empowering things an abuse survivor can do is to prayerfully hand shame back to his or her abuser. Theologians rarely discuss this concept, but it’s a frequent biblical theme. Biblical writers often asked God to shame their abusive enemies. Most likely, this meant asking God to do two things: (1) cause the abuser to be overwhelmed with shame for his or her sin so that they would repent, and (2) bring utter destruction on the abuser if he or she didn’t repent (p. 89)… For survivors of abuse, the most damaging definitions of forgiveness are those that conflate forgiveness, trust, and reconciliation and eliminate the possibility of negative consequences for the offender (p. 181-182).” Steven R. Tracy in Mending the Soul
“Genuine trust involves allowing another to matter and have an impact in our lives (p. 175).” Dan Allender in Wounded Heart
“Recovery—learning not to live based on the fear—must also occur in the context of relationship. It cannot occur in isolation. Fear destroys trust. Fear inhibits love. Fear results in construction, restraint, retreat. All of these profoundly affect our relationships (p. 151)… Learning to tell ‘normal’ hurt from ‘abnormal’ hurt is a difficult process. Learning how to respond when you are hurt and either way is also difficult (p. 170)… Fear guards; love welcomes. Fear hides; love pursues. Fear shuts up; love expresses. Fear panics; love waits. Fear keeps a record; love forgives graciously. To move out of here and into love is a tremendous shift (p. 171).” Diane Langberg in On the Threshold of Hope
“Power is the ability to produce desired effects (p. 78)… Survivors also see themselves as powerless to make good things happen or bad thing stop; at the same time, they see themselves as having excessive power to calls batterer evil in the lives of others (p. 88).” Diane Langberg in Counseling Survivors of Sexual Abuse