The Release of Glimmers of Grace: Moments of Peace & Healing Following Sexual Abuse
+JMJ+ Well, I can hardly believe it but Glimmers of Grace is now available in paperback! Writing this devotional has been such an incredible journey – sometimes full of joy and, at other times, anxiety and difficulty. My prayer throughout the course of writing it was, “God, you speak and I'll do the typing.” This entire process has required a lot of prayer and lot of vulnerability, and I hope that God's voice shines through in my writing!
I firmly believe belief that Glimmers of Grace holds a message for anyone. Whether you have been a victim of sexual abuse or not, whether you are a practicing Catholic or not, my prayer is that the Holy Spirit speaks to you in some way as you read this book. I've been asked by a few people, “Do I need to be Catholic to get something from this devotional?” I don't think so. While the publisher is Catholic and I am unwaveringly Catholic and have remained faithful to my faith, I really do believe that, so long as you are a person of faith, you will come away with some kind of inspiration. Christ can be made a part of the healing process and our faith can be a tremendous ally in healing.
No matter where you are in life and in your own healing or if you are supporting someone who is trying to heal, I want to encourage you to keep going, don't give up, and keep your eyes fixed on Christ. God often uses the darkest parts of our lives to reveal to us the most precious truths about Him and about ourselves. Ask God to work in your grief. At times you are going to feel weak but please don't let that discourage you! That feeling of weakness is an opportunity for God to do great things in you and through you. As we read in 2 Corinthians 12:9, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is made perfect in weakness.”
HAVE FAITH! There is nothing wrong with asking God to take away the storms that come into our lives, but let us strive to also ask for the grace and strength to withstand those storms with Jesus by our side. May we strive to have the kind of faith that Peter displayed in the gospel of Matthew when he asked Jesus, not to calm the storm, but instead, “Lord, if it is you, tell me to come to you across the water.” (Matthew 14:28) How difficult that is to do - to trust Our Lord to keep us afloat when we feel so certain that we will sink! Let us say often, "Jesus, I trust in you!"
By living in faith, we are reminded of God's wonderful grace and His unfailing love that He wants to share with us each and everyday. It is through faith that our eyes become open to recognizing His glimmers of grace. God's grace - those glimmers of grace - are what give us hope! Allow Him to embrace you as His precious child and shower you all His gifts. Yes, you are His precious child. No person and no event in your life can ever change that!!!
God invites you to enjoy a life of peace and joy. He invites you to have a VOICE. He invites you to live a life of freedom. He invites you to heal. He “heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.” (Psalm 147:3) Glimmers of Grace is just one of the many resources that can help you heal! If you choose to read this book, I promise that I will be with you every step of the way to help you embrace each gift that God offers you as you gradually find life after abuse. Yes, there is life after sexual abuse!
I understand your pain and heartbreak, dear friend! I understand how the evil actions of even just one person can affect so many others. There are no words to accurately describe the pain, the anger, the frustration, the betrayal. However, there is joy and freedom to be found in your suffering! Things may seem hopeless at times but you will rise victorious from this dark pit and you will find joy again. Hold tight to that knowledge! I want to share with you something that I wrote many years ago as I was still grieving my own rape. Although I doubt he will ever see it, it was written to my abuser (a Catholic priest).
To My Rapist
You may have violated my body, but you can never violate the spirit of courage & determination I have developed because of the hurt you inflicted on me.
You may have tried to rape me of my innocence, but you can never take away the beauty and the joy that comes of being reborn in the Spirit.
You may have given me no choice, but you can never take away the choices I have made in order to move on and heal.
You may have filled my mind with your lies and manipulations and made me to feel that it was my fault, but you can never take away the power of the Truth that has set me free.
You may have made me feel as though I was alone in this disgusting secret, but you can never take away the presence of my loving Father.
You may have betrayed me and so many others, but you can never take away the trust-filled relationships that God has blessed me with.
You may have tried to rob me of who I am, but you can never take away my faith and you will never stop me from being who God made me to be.
You were a wolf in sheep's clothing, but you have finally been revealed as the monster that you are. You will be left with the shame of what you did to the innocent. I may have changed because of your evil actions, but I choose to use the suffering you inflicted upon me for the greater glory of God and for the good of others.
I choose to survive! I will not dwell and I will strive not to hate. Rather, I will respond with forgiveness and remember that, in the end, God will judge you.
Live with the realization that the innocent young girl you once held captive is now FREE.
Please believe that there is hope, peace, and freedom after sexual abuse! You can break free from the bonds that hold you captive! Your faith can help lead you there.
I may never have the opportunity to meet each and every one of you face to face, but please be assured of my daily prayers for you. In a special way, I pray for those of you who choose to read Glimmers of Grace. May the Holy Spirit open your minds and hearts to the glimmers of God's grace and may He grant you peace and healing.
Glimmers of Grace is available for purchase at several online stores. Here are the links to Amazon and Our Sunday Visitor: