Hope For the Abuser
by Wynn Cameron Thompson

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Sexual abuse, rape, molestation and incest have been receiving more and more atten-tion. It seems as though these atrocities are increasing at an alarming rate. What most people do not realise is that this has been going on for a long time. What we see is only the tip of the iceberg. Furthermore, the main focus of help is to the abused. Little or no help is being given to the abuser.

As a child and teenager I was abused and as an adult I have abused. For the last 15 years I have experienced freedom from my sexual bondage and addiction. The key to this freedom is a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. I would like to offer some points that might help bring hope to the abuser:

1. One must admit that he/she has a problem.

2. One must be sick and tired of being sick and tired.

3. One must be willing to do anything for his/her healing.

4. One must come to the Cross of Jesus.

5. One must learn to forgive and be forgiven.

6. One must become open and accountable to another individual and/or support group.

7. One must come to know that we always have a choice.

All abusers have completely different backgrounds and no two are alike. Most abusers were abused as a child or teen-ager. Most abusers do it in the name of love. Yes, there is a percentage of abusers who abuse out of anger, rage and hate…but most think they ‘love’ the individual that they are abusing.

There is a strange kind of ‘hunger’ that drives abusers to abuse. Most of the time this hunger is a deep rooted need for love, approval, affirmation and bonding with the proper parent, which they never received in their formative years. Rejection plays a big role in the drive to abuse someone much younger than the abuser. Children are open, innocent and hungry for love…they give themselves easily to kind, warm attention…particularly when the child’s needs are rarely met. Children do not reject love…whether it is healthy and holy or sick and twisted…if they are ‘hungry’ them-selves.

There is always hope…but first we must see and believe the Truth…that is, Jesus Christ came to set the captives free. Those who are abusing others are prisoners. They are caught in a web of deception that comes from the pit of hell.

Jesus said in John 10:10, “The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.” Those who are abusing others and themselves have come to believe a lie. The truth is that no matter what we have done we still have a choice…we can choose to change. Our will combined with the Will of God and the power of His Holy Spirit can and will set us free one step at a time.

The Church of today as a whole, has not addressed the issue of sexual brokenness. Paul in his writings spoke of sexual sin quite openly. The key for those who call themselves Christian is to be more like Christ, loving the sinner but not the sin. We need to come out of the closet of denial, secrecy and shame into the Light that is Jesus Christ of Nazareth. Many times the Church of today has been so heavenly minded that they are no earthly good. I believe God in His Holy Scriptures teaches ‘balance’, but before we can get to that point we must humble ourselves. “If My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.” 2 Chronicles 7:14