John 1:1-5 “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was with God in the beginning. 3 Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. 4 In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. 5 The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.
Genesis 3:1 “Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the Lord God had made. He said to the woman, ‘Did God really say…?”
John 8:44 “You belong to your father, the devil, and you want to carry out your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies.”
John 8: 31b-32 “Jesus said, ‘If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.’”
The need to know the truth about Who God truly is could not be more paramount to us in the era in which we live. How we see and understand God and His Word determines EVERYTHING else in our lives. A Biblical worldview is firmly rooted in knowing the God of the Bible – the Great I Am. A Biblical worldview gives hope because the same God who spoke the universe into existence is the same One who loves and cares for us now.
This blog post is a tiny glimpse into why teaching a Biblical Worldview is so extremely important to me. It comes from a monumental place deep inside of me – a place so intricately and tightly woven into my identity, calling, and passion, that to know me is to know that I live and breathe in gratitude to the Healer. The Father set me free by healing my view of Himself, myself, and the world around me. The truth and life of who He is and what His Word says stands out in stark contrast against the blackness and death of the pit of lies from which He rescued me.
Psalm 43:3 says “Send out Your light and Your truth; let them guide me. Let them lead me to Your holy mountain, to the place where You live.”
For a number of years, I kept a nightmarish memory from my childhood locked securely in a remote and obscure closet in my mind. Subconscious, habitual self-protection and intentional forgetfulness worked together to protect me from the intense pain it brought if moved to the forefront of my thoughts. Only in the night, when my guard was down, would it come rushing back with all of the force of water breaking through a dam. It wasn’t until about nine years ago that my heart was able to communicate to my mind that it was time to resolve the nightmare and put it to rest.
It took well over a dozen years for this process to come full cycle. It also took intense healing – healing that was rooted in the discovery of the true identity of God. This discovery was not an overnight oh-now-I-get-it! flash of recognition; instead it was an intense awakening and rebirthing. Everything that had been sown and pounded into my mind, heart, and soul was steeped and drenched in the acidity of lies against God. The Word, which is meant to bring freedom and life, was twisted into gruesome, hideous deceptions designed to inflict slavery and death. Weapons of mass destruction, wielded in the hands of a few powerful, who plowed down the innocent souls of children with abuses of every kind.
I had been conceived, born, and raised with these obscenely crooked inculcations shaping and warping my thoughts, beliefs, self awareness, and worldview. Terror gripped and wrenched life out of every cell of my body. Darkness and confusion were my constant companions. Even as a small child, I was afraid to live, terrified to die, stuck in an alternative universe where I had nothing that was real inside of myself. And so I grew, bound and gagged in the corner of my own soul.
It was in this terrible place that the memory lived.
I share it with you now because I know that I am not the only person who has suffered at the hands of someone who uses God’s name in vain, twisting and distorting the God-view of others in order to terrorize and manipulate those under their control.
I share it with you because this being made new – this being made free has given my heart and soul the command to sing the praise of the One who breaks chains of steely lies. The TRUTH does, indeed, set captives free.
For many years after leaving the cult, I had a recurring dream. About nine years ago, I had it for the last time; the dream ended differently than it had ever ended before, and I decided to write it down. All of the previous occurrences of this dream, I had always awoken abruptly in a cold sweat. This time, I felt closure and triumph. Freedom. Sweet freedom.
I see her, this child I have seen a million times before. Her head bowed on drawn-up knees, her fingers crammed into her ears. An occasional whimper escapes her – a sound I know so well, both grates on my nerves and tightens my throat.
I cannot rip my gaze from her…back pressed against the rough outhouse wall, her feet mere inches away from the hole opening into the putrid cavern below. Her small body almost completely hidden in the dark of the shadowy corner.
Bats screech through the night, smacking the walls of the wretched shed, while the cold, white moon shoots a crescent-shaped spotlight over her bowed head.
This child, this night…this whole scene causes my hands to sweat and my heart to heave in my chest.
I want to reach out to her. I long to pull her close.
Instead, I whisper in her ear, like I have done so many times before…
“He’s here. He sees your pain, only you don’t know what He looks like; you don’t know His voice.”
I want to tell her that He loves her, but I remember, she doesn’t know what that is. This child is so broken, so twisted in her soul.
So I crouch down before her to peer up into her face, the acid tears that course down her cheeks also burn mine.
My hand reaches out to her, and I feel my own skin, young and smooth but not innocent – scared by someone else’s sin.
The memory is so clear, I can feel the roughly unfinished chipboard wall of the outhouse digging into my back. I can still hear the fear crashing through the veins in my ears, my lungs tightening in my chest.
And here, the dream changes…
Habit moves my hand to reach for my heart, and truth breaks through the darkness; my heart, once so broken and mangled, is no longer ragged or raw.
I stand to my feet. I know why I’m here – why I’ve returned once again to this place…
I’ve been set free; I’ve been healed.
I remember the Healer and the scars that He bares for me, and I know with all certainty – He’s the reason that I’m here!
His truth has scattered the darkness. He tenderness has made me His own. His love has given me a new identity, and instead of fear, strength, and a passion to share the hope of who He truly is.
My arms stretch back through the decades, through the anguish, and gently lift the child from the secret darkness and stench.
Together, we face the light.
Together, we leave the dark behind.
Together, we kneel at the feet of our Savior; the older one gently lifting the younger one up to see His face.
Gently the Savior holds out His hand and points to every moment where He was there. He teaches her the sound of His Words and His voice, and He shows her the scars in His hands and His side – the price that He paid for her to be free – from their sin and her’s.
The fear that was her identity has been conquered.
Every lie and act of neglect, the countless, life-threatening abuses that Satan wanted to use to destroy her have been used to bring blessing and strength to her life.
I know that this is the last time the little girl is going to hide, terrified, in the outhouse.
We have conquered it.
Even the bats are dead, the outhouse burned to the ground.
Redeeming love has won.
Soli Deo Gloria