Category Archives: Reliance Upon God

Forgiveness is the choice to avoid any desire for revenge or any temptation to nurse a wounded ego, according to Andrew Murray

cropped-cry_208356-Shutterstock-Free.jpgAndrew Murray was a pastor, author, and one of the founders of the South African General Mission. During his lifetime, he published over 240 books on Christian spirituality. For Murray (1981) forgiveness is defined as avoiding any desire to punish the offender, to nurse a wounded ego, or to maintain one’s rights [to retaliate or seek revenge], and is made possible by the power of Christ’s forgiving love dwelling in the forgiver. It is Christ Himself forgiving in and through the forgiver.

Murray, A. (1981). With Christ in the school of prayer. Springdale, PA: Whitaker House.

Courageously facing the facts of our abuse may require a safe friend and a power greater than our own

cropped-shutterstock_76161385-Older-Couple-Hugging-PRCHS.jpgIn order to heal, one must at some point begin to face up to the trauma one has suffered. For it is only as one faces the pain and forgives one’s offenders that one can heal. This takes courage. And many would say, it requires not only trustworthy and caring persons in one’s life to give witness to one’s painful past, but the love and power of God. Such was the case with Doug’s wife. Her trusted friend for the journey was her husband “Doug” (pseudonym). The strength that both she and her “Doug” needed for the journey came from God:

“Ours is a story of restoration. Ours is a story of having to walk back through the pain and reliving the nightmare. Ours is a story of how God healed all of that pain that was stored deep down inside. Ours is a story of how God caused my wife to once again become a whole person” (“Doug”, 2001, p. 8).

How do we find a safe and trustworthy friend to open up to? We have found Cloud and Townsend’s (1995) work helpful in this regard.

How do we begin to rely upon God for the strength to face our pain? For some, simply asking God to teach them how to rely upon Him might be sufficient, as God is eager to do so. However, for some who experienced spiritual abuse or were involved in cult activity, even a simple prayer like this may be very difficult.

“Doug”. (2001). For better or for worse. Colorado Springs, CO: Lydia Press.

Cloud, H., & Townsend, J. (1995). Safe people: How to find relationships that are good for you and avoid those that aren’t.