God designs us and creates us, but He doesn’t stop there. He watches over us and protects us throughout our lives. One day, we realize we need a relationship with God and we decide to be in that relationship forever, which is only possible through Jesus Christ. I am forever grateful that God relentlessly pursued a personal relationship with me and kept me company during rough times. This post took me weeks and not hours to write – it was so hard. I’m not trying to romanticize or oversimplify God…if anything, let me try to put my testimony into words for you: Without God, I wouldn’t have made it.
My family is from Sri Lanka and we lived abroad before settling in Canada. A lot of my immediate and extended family is Christian, mostly Catholic or Anglican, and I have Hindu relatives as well. I’m the youngest and the only girl, after my two brothers. I love my family, and am terrible at expressing how I feel to them! My brothers are known for their geek squad conversations, twin-like closeness, enduring love, and non-invasive protective natures. My parents can be adorkable, and they do well together when they’re operating as a team. I received Jesus as my Saviour when I was around 8 years old, and I remember speaking openly with God and experiencing His presence tangibly. We grew up knowing and worshipping the one true God, but there was still dysfunction in our family.
My parents experienced devastation due to civil war, the untimely loss of close loved ones, quite a few health scares, and other generational struggles such as alcoholism and demonic oppression. I learned a lot from the ups and downs of their marriage, parenting, relationships and career struggles. Our family had happy and unhappy memories together. There were times we were just barely getting by financially and just barely getting along with each other. From among these challenges, let me share one situation that has affected me the most.
I experienced abuse as a child from a trusted adult. That was one of the darkest times of my life, where I felt the fight was being choked out of me. The authorities were involved but I didn’t press charges. My family supported me to the best of their ability, but since I didn’t seek help right away, I suffered. The pain and sorrow from this abuse wrecked me and I almost allowed it to ruin my life. Any time I run into this man at social gatherings, I feel messed up for days and weeks afterwards. The suicidal thoughts can be overwhelming; I allow anger and defeat seep into every area of my life. I wanted to give up so many times, but God kept reassuring me that there is more and it is found through Him. Needless to say, any kind of abuse leaves emotional wounds that can fester if not attended to. Years later, I am still recovering.
My sisters, when you don’t surrender and release every aspect of your hurt and shame to God, healing and deliverance can be a tedious and ineffective process. To His credit, God has actually healed me extensively, despite me holding back and my reluctance to sort through a past. Through God’s love and dedication for me, I am actually able to experience joy that no one can ever take away. Yes, I have light scars; some wounds are still being attended to by God. In the areas that I have given God complete control, I have seen full restoration of function and even great strength! Being able to write this testimony is a victory in itself and I can finally say that the joy of the Lord is my strength.
When you feel defeated, stuck, overwhelmed, disappointed or you are searching for truth and purpose, I want to share the “secret” for getting me through it. God, who is completely holy, meets me when I felt broken, unworthy, shameful and He loves me unconditionally. His love towards you is already true and perfect. The journey is hard, but not impossible. Please trust Him to carry your sorrows and heal your wounds so that you, too, can live and love in freedom.
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and my burden is light.” (Matthew 11:28-30)