Imagine this. No really, close your eyes and imagine that when you open them you are stuck in mud up to your thighs. You are a child and you cannot budge! The mud is thick and sticky and seems like cement to you! You decide to struggle a bit each day to try and get out but it only makes you tired. After awhile you don’t struggle as much. So you decide to watch life; to watch what is going on around you from your stuck point. As a child you can see your family but it is like seeing them through a telescope. You can see other kids playing but they seem like specks of sand from your vantage point. It almost seems unreal. So you close your eyes because the strain to see just hurts more. Sitting with your eyes closed, you hear someone approach. You want to scream out, “help me”, but nothing comes out! You open and plead with your eyes, but these are just kids who want to hit you and push you because they know you cannot fight back. Same with family: mom sees you stuck and yet does nothing to help you out. You wonder if maybe she is thinking this is your fault that you are stuck in mud up to your thighs, so get yourself out!
As I grow I realize that life is the mud, at least to me it is. I’m still stuck in it but I see new people and think I have a chance to get out of the mud that has been as cement to me. These other new people offer me a substance to ease my pain. It is called beer and it tastes nasty, but just maybe it will help. I can laugh and cry, but still, I cannot speak. I decide to try other alcohol that is given to me and I keep it close and drink it often. I am starved for attention and I realize that as long as I drink there are people around me. Yes, they are close to me physically, but yet so far away. There must be more to this life than being stuck in the mud, but this is all I know. I live my life confined to the mud. I have been taken advantage of. I have been sexually abused. I have been emotionally abused. I have been physically abused. I. Have. Been. Abused!
Many years later and much more abuse I can add that I have been spiritually abused. Now I am complete in abuse; body, soul, and spirit. But then hope comes along. Hope in the way of resources to help me get out of this mud! For crying out loud, help me get out of this mud. But I am not crying out loud. I am voiceless and numb and frozen and scared. I trust no one! But the little “hope” ear listens and wants to believe. I listen more and more and even though it takes quite a long time I start to open up.
One thing about being stuck in mud and struggling to get out is that my body hurts. I have not been moving around except for my struggle to free myself of this sticky, nasty mud. So I am stiff and my body hurts, but at least now I can keep my eyes open for awhile. This brings more hope.
This story could go on forever, but the main point of this is that when you have been stuck in something for so, so long and people arrive to help you out that you will be untrusting and unsure and afraid. Others offered help, said they could help but I was hurt more, so why should I listen to you?!? You say you care, you say you have the answers. Yeah right. Maybe I’ll listen a little. The FEAR is overwhelming. Yet I listen. Still covered in mud I can move around a little bit. I cannot see clearly nor stand up.
Every so often I notice that there is less mud. I am not so covered in my struggle to be free of the mud. I can lift a leg out and even the other leg. I don’t know if I will ever be clean of the mud. But now I can walk. I can talk. I can use my voice. I can grow. I can become what God created me to be. I am alive!