God and Sexual Assault

Scheduling God

Do you try to take control?

Written in 2017- update at the end.

“’For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.’” Jeremiah 29:11

Being abused brings with it many emotional issues. For example, I have a great need for a schedule. A definitive schedule. So much so, when it differs much it causes me great anxiety and emotional turmoil.

Take today for example. I am going to my therapy appointment, but it’s not my usual day. It was rescheduled from two days ago. It threw off my entire week. I need consistency. A schedule. This is an emotional issue I have which comes from my abuse.

Similar to this writer’s conference I have coming up. I haven’t been around the amount of people I will be around, for the amount of time I will be, since I taught school almost 8 years ago. This will be on a Thursday night, and then from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. BOTH Friday and Saturday. However, God provided the way for me to go so I know I’m supposed to go. But it messes with my schedule, my way of living, and very much with my security.

My anxiety over the conference, over the change of my therapy appointment, and other changes in my schedule, is all more than I can tolerate at times. Last night it brought me to tears.  

Why? Because during the abuse and assaults I lived to get by. Once they were over and I had control of my own life, without even knowing it, I lived so I could control whatever aspect possible. Especially once I stopped teaching, I became extremely inflexible so I had control. Having control makes life seem okay. If life seems okay then I can deal with it better.

However, today as I am preparing to go to my therapy appointment I am in kind of a funk. I’m not sure what to expect. I know I really shouldn’t expect anything different, but things are off and so my anxiety is up and my day is off schedule.

I’m sure you can relate to the control, anxiety and even my “funk”. We may have survived our abuse, our assaults, but we may not yet have the skills we need to deal with life. We need to learn them with help from therapists and professionals who know how to teach us.

There’s someone else who longs to help us too. Someone who longs for us to turn to Him and release our need for control and anxiety to Him.

God. He longs for us to allow Him control.

He is the One with the blueprints for our life. The plans. The outcome. The ultimate schedule.

Right now as I’m writing this I realize I need to surrender to Him my need for control. No, it is not going to be solved this minute, or overnight, or even next week. Surrendering is a daily task. We will inevitably take up our burden of control again and again.

The first step “seems” in fact quite simple, but IS very hard. Ask God to take control.

Will you ask Him to do it for you today?  I am right now, and it will need to be my prayer every day from here on out. I know how imperfect I am so I know I will fail and take back control. God just asks for us to get back up and ask Him again. He’s always there. All we need to do is start with a simple prayer.

Father God,

I ask You today to take control of my life. Be my scheduler. Help me to accept the changes which occur in life through Your comforting love, and I ask for Your grace when I take control back. You are the only one who knows the plans set before me, so I ask for Your guidance today and every day.

Amen © 2017 Susan M. Clabaugh. All Rights Reserved.

Update: I reread this in March 2021 as I planned out my posts, and on a day when I felt like the plans I had been making had fallen through. I needed to surrender control again. It is a daily task for any of us.

 And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:19

Susan is an author and speaker who loves to share her journey of God's redemption and encourage others as they look to God. As a former elemetary teacher with a passion for teaching, Susan also owns her own tutoring and consulting business where she empowers students and parents in reading. Susan lives in Lee's Summit, Missouri, with her adorable and grumpy Persian cat, Mia.

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