A Survivor’s Manifesto

I am trying to focus on what I can change. 

I’ve been so focused on the problems, that I’ve lost my potential for seeing solutions. 

No matter how much I’ve been hurt by other people, I can let it go and trust God with my healing. I know He can heal, He’s brought great healing to me before. He will do it again. Because I am loved by Him. 

I can learn from how I’ve been hurt. I can let it change me for the better or for the worse. I get to decide how I respond. I get to decide when I respond. I get to decide if I respond at all. 

If I believe that Christ carries the burden of sin for the world, then I have to believe that Christ can turn the evil done to me into something good for me. I can’t make this come about all on my own, all I can do is decide to let God be God. And then set out on being the best version of the me I have been created to be. 

I’m done with allowing destructive people to define me. This is within my locus of control. I can’t control what they say or what they do, but I can control whether or not I take their words and actions to heart. I can choose to burn the bridges that connect me to the destructive behaviors of others. 

I am a beloved child of God. I am learning and growing in His Grace. I don’t always do or say the right thing, but I am constantly learning how to improve. 

I deserve to be treated with dignity and respect. As do you. If either of us transgress this, we ought to set things right– for our own good, and the good of each other.

I am capable of living the life I was meant to live. I’m still searching that life out for myself. I’m not there yet, but Im closer to it than ever before. 

No matter what happens, I am loved by the only One that really matters. The only One that can truly love me as I deserve. I want to love you as He loves you, to see you with His eyes. Each and every day, His guiding hands leads me closer to seeing and loving as He does. To seeing you, and loving you the way that you deserve to be loved. 

Today, I am going to love me. That too is within my control. 

You don’t have to love me in order for me to love myself. The fact that you do not love me, is evidence that you do not love yourself either. The two are intimately connected. Because we are both children of God. What you hate in me, you hate in yourself. 

I can be patient with you, in the same way I seek to be patient with myself. Neither of us have crossed the finishing line of human perfection… I can remember that your imperfections bother you the same way mine do me. 

I can choose to forgive you. I don’t have to feel forgiveness, because it’s not a feeling. It’s a decision to let go of how you’ve trespassed against me. And in loving myself, I’m not going to allow you to trespass against me the same way. 

I am not going to be toxic to myself. As a result, I’m not going to let your own toxicity spill over onto me. That’s how things need to be. If you take this distance as unloving, please know that I can’t truly love you as you deserve unless I first love myself. Loving myself forbids subjecting myself to others that, in their current state, overwhelm my current capacity to love. I am not God. Someday, I hope He can heal me to the point where I too can love unconditionally, but I’m not there yet. Right now, my love is imperfect. But it won’t always be so. 

I forgive you. I love you, to the best of my ability. In Christ, my ability to love grows with each passing day. Christ alone holds the unconditional love you deserve–the kind of love I aspire to, but have yet to fully ascertain. 

His peace be ever with us both.