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Overcoming Your Abusive Past

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Brooke Lynn was kidnapped, abandoned, given away and raised by strangers. Here's her story of finding freedom from her past with the love of God and faith. (http://www.stockfreeimages.com)

"Our secrets remain locked away and tucked inside our souls. We keep the doors to our hearts bolted shut. We refuse to expose our pain, abuse, addictions, despair and our past that makes us vulnerable. Because we fear disappointment, we don't find the strength to trust.

We erect walls and refuse to restore relationships or build new ones to keep our hearts protected. We live in fear and pain from past failures, keeping us from taking a step forward in faith. I know this because of my own experiences.

I was shut down, pushed down, beaten up, abandoned and shoved down a long road of pain and dysfunction. I am tired of hiding my pain. Finished with people looking at me and believing I have the perfect life, or I have it all together. There are no secrets here.

At 5 years old, I was kidnapped, abandoned, given away and then raised by strangers. My childhood was saturated with physical and emotional pain as I endured dysfunction and mistreatment. It was only by grace, the invisible hands of God and hope that I stayed alive.

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Living abused and broken kept me full of shame and a prisoner to negative mindsets. I believed I wasn't good enough to be loved, successful, liked or approved of. My self-confidence was depleted, creating a deep insecurity inside me, holding me back from pursuing my dreams.

In desperation to overcome insecurity, I came to the end of myself. I prayed, crying out to God and telling Him I couldn't live in constant emotional turmoil any longer. I was filled with shame, pain and guilt. In order to break free from lies I believed and unbearable feelings; I sought God with my whole heart, asking Him to reveal truth and breathe life into my spirit. More than anything, I wanted healing, peace and the ability to walk in truth and freedom.

Through years of prayer, therapy and growing in my relationship with God, I gained courage, strength and healing. I've been able to love and accept myself, living with "childlike" faith, allowing God to embrace me in His arms and be my strength. I learned that when we surrender ourselves to God, He renews our minds, creates in us a pure heart, teaches us to guard our hearts and heals us in His time.

He provides wisdom, courage, peace and strength beyond our understanding. He directs our every step, holds our hand and carries us through every circumstance. God has amazing plans and a fulfilling life for us. "For I know the plans I have for you," says the LORD. "They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope" (Jer. 29:11).

Our relationship with God is a lifelong journey of seeking Him and allowing Him to teach us to become more "Christlike" and Spirit-led in all our ways. When we know how much God loves, adores and cares about us, we can better understand our value and worth; allowing us to love ourselves. When we know who we are in Christ, we can think and act in a confident, assertive and positive manner because we know God is on our side.

We can dream big, pray audaciously, set goals and expect God to move in our lives. When we know who we are in Christ, we can live in freedom, trusting that God is in control and He has us in His best interest. Surrendering our lives to Jesus changes everything. We are adopted into an eternal family and become an heir of the King.

We have many blessings to celebrate, promises to watch unfold and a loving God with supernatural power working in our lives and hearts. "For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, so that we should walk in them" (Eph. 2:10).

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