The emails women have sent me are truly inspiring. I feel blessed to get to know so many women who are fighting for freedom and striving for virtue so courageously. I want to thank you for your candor, it invigorates me. You are why Made in His Image exists. My heart and soul yearn for you to experience the healing Hands of the Father, as I have and I will never cease to pray for you in your journey.
I came across something my doctor challenged me to do when I was in therapy and I thought you could try it too. What I did in the paragraphs that follow are list things that hurt me and then how I could choose to see the beauty from the evil. The following paragraphs are taken from my therapy journal.
When my abuser tried to choke me. He must have been very sick and confused to have hurt a child that way. So I can turn this into a prayer and pray that my future husband will treat me with respect, because I’m scared that he could abuse me. I can use this as an opportunity to trust that my Father will protect me in this regard.
I remember the time he made me bleed and smashed my head into the tile wall. For anyone to hurt an adolescent so violently in that way is very sad and they need extra prayers for their own healing, for they must have really been hurting. It’s okay for me to get angry and for it to hurt, but I will turn the hurt into something beautiful, choose to see the beauty in it. Jesus said, “Blessed are the merciful, for they shall be shown mercy.” And, “love your enemies, and show love to those who hurt you.”
Seeing the good from the ugliness of what I experienced from pornography. When Charlie told me of his addiction, it made me cling to Jesus. I started going to daily Mass, praying the Rosary daily and praying more. It motivated me to go to India. And India changed my life because it was there that I began to grasp the message of God as Father.
Other positive aspects from India: I started praying a daily holy hour. I joined Varsity Catholic staff. My sister and countless students told me that God used me through a talk to inspire them to apply for a mission trip and who knows the number of lives they touched through their witness. I learned about Divine Mercy.
God has given me countless encounters with women who struggle/have struggled with self-esteem. I started to learn about who I was through the cross. I learned that I’m a Daughter of God created in the image and likeness of God.
One time I heard a talk and the speaker opened by saying, “Pornography industries make more money then the NFL, MLB, NBA, MLS leagues combined.” I thought the pain would be unbearable. I thought about how many teams are in each league and how each team has a stadium and how there are thousands of seats in each stadium and those statistics made me sick to my stomach. I turned it into a prayer and thought about how sad God must be that His children are making such horrible choices. I also thought that He must want His children to be bold and stand for Truth. I knew in my heart that He wanted me to build Made in His Image, but was scared of saying “Yes” because there were so many unknowns.
Whatever it is that you are struggling with, write it down and then list how you can turn it into something beautiful for God, otherwise the pain will overshadow the beauty. My doctor once told me the words of St. Therese, You can’t be a saint halfway.