Therefore, strengthen your feeble arms and weak knees. Make level paths for your feet so that the abused will no longer be disabled, but rather healed.

Hebrews 12:12-13

Abuse is a difficult subject to talk about. It’s difficult because it’s a topic that makes us feel uncomfortable and uneasy and many times we want to deny that it actually happens.

Abuse is about everything hurtful. It’s about shame, disrespect, disregard for another, the using of others, taking advantage of others, and the misuse of power. Abuse is about secrets, control, anger, and getting one’s needs met. Abuse is about violating another’s boundaries, creating distrust, and sending confusing messages about what relationships are suppose to be. Abuse does so much damage.

There are different kinds of abuse: physical, sexual, emotional, and spiritual. And they come in our lives in different ways: such as domestic violence, child abuse, and church leadership abuse.

It’s critical and crucial that we know about abuse. In being proactive, we can know how to prevent and respond to abuse, we are better able to protect those around us, help those who have been harmed, and bring healing to lives that have been greatly damaged by it. God calls each of us to be healing agents so that reconciliation through Christ is possible.

Judy De Wit, MA, MA, LMFT