Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Day Thirty-seven- Totally Helpless and Hopeless

I was talking to my good friend and advisor today. He was checking in on me to make sure I was doing okay. He does that every once and a while. I like that.

I was sharing with him some of the issues I have with telling my story. Some people still see me as the "victim" needing "healing". And as one who experienced this horrible reality, "healing" is definitely a necessary component of it all. However, sometimes words have a way of depicting weakness and vulnerabilities. I feel very far from weak and vulnerable. I feel very strong and convicted. Does it still hurt? Yes. Does it still cause questions? Yes. Do I still have emotions that cause me to cry? Yes. But I'm beyond the phase of "healing" and victimization. Take the words of Theo Fluery as he was hesitant to admit the abuse he faced. As Fleury writes in his book: "I could see how it would play. I would have been stigmatized forever as the kid who was molested by his coach. The victim." He didn't want to admit his abuse because of the stigma it would attach to him. I completely understand.

I know I don't want to have the label of "the victim". The problem is that when you come out and share your story, some people automatically categorize you as "the victim." Now, to be sure, I have met people whose lives have been characterized with "victimhood". I just made up that word - which I do often. But those who suffer from "victimhood" are people who always have an excuse for their circumstances or behavior. They rarely take any kind of responsibility for their actions and always are looking to someone else to blame for their problems. Maybe they have been subjected to a lot of pain, but for some reason, they are unable to get beyond that to a productive and content life. It is possible that their "victimhood" was so bad that they are unable to defend themselves and their problems. I, however, am not there with this, and as a result do not ask for any kind of pity or contempt. I can handle that myself. So, when I ask for support, I'm asking as a friend and confidant, not as a victim. What a horrible label.

My friend asked me if that meant I was no longer TH and H or totally helpless and hopeless. My reply was, "you are jumping ahead to the end of my story but, yes, I am definitely TH and H. I am totally helpless and hopeless. But not in the way most see it. I don't believe in a watered down Christianity that says, "As long as I'm doing good and helping other people, then it really doesn't matter what I or you believe." I believe that God is completely perfect and we, as Man, are not. Thus the need for a substitute. If I can't be perfect then I can't commune with God. But when God provides a way (through Christ) for me to become perfect, then I can commune with him. Not through my own actions but through his sacrifice. I am unable to accomplish his goals. Thus I am Totally Helpless and Hopeless - if not for God. Thanks be to him. Amen.

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