By: Danny Wallace
The boy had big dreams. Some were real, and some were just the dreams of little boys. Either way, they vanished with the boy.
Something horrible happened. It was hard to see from the outside. His body looked the same, but his heart was damaged beyond repair. His trust was gone – his dreams had vanished. His skin was young, but inside, he was old. The light had gone out in his soul. A little heart that once beat with dreams of being an astronaut could no longer be found in a heart of stone that had grown cold, and dark. The boy was abused.
He hid inside himself while standing in a crowd. He smiled on the outside and cried on the inside. He performed for applause, but remained seated to his own performance. He knew the truth. It was all a lie. Nothing was real. No one noticed, and no one cared. Life was nothing more than, “build a wall,” and hide behind it.
Survive, if you can. If I can stay alive, maybe someday I’ll be happy again. But once a child is dead inside, will he ever truly live again?
Everyday I deal with stories of abuse. However, most people wouldn’t even recognize most of them as having been abused. There is a mindset in America that only physically, or sexually violating someone qualifies as abuse. Even in these horrific instances most physical, or sexual abuse is considered to be nothing more than normal discipline, physically, or “just the way things are,” sexually.
As one might imagine, this mindset sends victims of abuse into emotional outrage. That reaction is completely understandable. I have experienced abuse – physically, sexually, mentally, emotionally, and verbally. I can tell you from personal experience that the worst level of abuse is verbal, which also translates into both emotion, and mental abuse.
I do not in any way give a pass, or place a level of unimportance on physical and sexual abuse. They are repulsive, unacceptable, and the lowest form of coward is found in each perpetrator. Nevertheless, as someone who has experienced it all, I can tell you without hesitation that all other abuse pales in the presence of verbal abuse.
In many physical abuse cases the victim meets their death. No such luxury is afforded the victim that must endure verbal assaults most every day of their lives. For you see, long after the verbal abuse has ended, the sound of hateful words ring loud, and clear every day of the victim’s life.
Our society participates in such abuse everyday with no thought of what we’re doing. In fact, verbal abuse is a weapon of choice among many professing Christians. Sure, we choose our words well, and yes, we get really clever at how we disguise our slurs – but the outcome is the same. Souls are wounded; hearts bleed out, and destinies are forever destroyed; all of this as a result of our careless, and unbridled tongues.
There is another level of abuse that has been present since the beginning of time. It is most likely the greatest abuse of all – religious abuse. Many a well-destined soul has been robbed of joy and graceful flight at the hands of religious tyrants - little men, with a self-righteous, Napoleon complex, seeking to cage, and control others as representatives of God. Though Jesus had nothing but words of blessing for whores, homosexuals, and tax collectors – He had strong words for these abusers of royal children who abuse in the name of religion.
Jesus called them “frauds,” and “blood-sucking, vipers.” He declared them to be hair-splitting, ignorant fools. Jesus said they each traveled halfway around the world to make a single convert, and then burdened that convert with the same “hell” that they preached. Jesus called these violators “abusers of God’s children,” declaring that they had no intention of entering the Kingdom of Heaven through the doorway that He had provided, and therefore, they stood in that same doorway to insure that no one else could enter in. He called them, “reptilian snakes!”
I hear a lot about revival, and how we “need” one desperately today. The truth is, we don’t even begin to need a revival of that same religious abuse we have endured some 2000 plus years from the glorious cross of freedom. We don’t need a revival service – what we need is a funeral service to put this abuse to rest forever. The guardian spirits of religion should have long ago been charged with the proper offense, sentenced, executed, and buried as the “dead men’s bones” that Jesus declared religion to be while it yet walked and breathed.
We need our eyes opened to truth, and our hearts caressed by an acknowledgment of all that the sacrifice of Jesus has completed for our freedom. So much has been preached about accountability, and holding people unto account for their sins, but I doubt a single preacher of that “accountability” would find it so enticing if true judgment fell where judgment is needed. If the never-ceasing flow of anti-Christ, anti-Grace vomit were held unto its true account, the children of God would have ran for their lives from the great cathedrals of religion long ago, and into the sin-houses where we are needed most, and where we should have been all along.
Self-righteous, arrogant, know it all’s, who think they have it all together are not in need of a physician. Jesus made this perfectly clear. Even if we felt we were, in that state of arrogant ignorance we would act as our own physician and simply treat ourselves. However, those who have been trampled, judged, and condemned by these self-medicating, vipers of religion are in great need of the Great Physician, and for such as these Jesus gave His life.
Will some abusers change? Yes, I believe they can. However, as any good psychologist will tell you, “It all depends on the level of abuse.”
Men who desire sex with children can never be trusted with children. They may truly repent of their sin, and truly be sorry for their desires; however, if they do truly repent they will also be the first to tell you, “Don’t ever let me near a child again.” Most will simply repent, lie, and say they have changed, begging to be trusted with children again. Many people have believed these lies to the detriment of millions of young victims.
The Good News is that the worst abusers of all can certainly change. Those who have controlled, and verbally abused others on every level known to man can become God’s greatest fountain of blessing to the world in a single decision. Few abusers who are bound by the stronghold of religion will ever leave that stronghold to become God’s anointed fountain of blessing, but it doesn’t mean it’s not possible.
The Apostle Paul is a great example of what is possible with God. However, let us not forget that it took being struck down in blindness before Saul ever considered a change of heart that gave us Paul, the man who said, “I preach Christ, and Him crucified.”
We don’t need a revival of that good ole’ time, religion. We need a plague of blindness to cover the grand cage of religion, bringing forth a voice declaring the glory of Christ, and Him crucified for all. Under this great voice, the greatest abuse of all is gone forever.