For centuries religion has been used as a weapon against marginalized cultures to convince them to give up their freedom. It’s something that I am only beginning to understand myself.

Having been sexually abused by a Priest myself, I know what it feels like to be genuinely afraid of God. Largely because I was convinced mostly by my abusers, that the abuse I was experiencing was due to God’s anger at me. Religion was weaponized against me to turn me into a victim of sexual abuse and trafficking.

It took me a long time to come to terms with the difference between God and the men that claim to serve them. It also took me a really long time to realize that I could have a relationship with God outside of what my abusers tried to convince me of.

Now that I am older and free of that life, I am finding it hard to find space to let God into my heart. I am genuinely trying, but it’s difficult because I still see God as something to be feared instead of something to be respected.

I still see men as having far too much importance over God, and that brainwashing is going to take me a while to get over. I still feel like I can’t pray because I don’t deserve to like I don’t deserve to feel God’s love.

I often wonder if I am ever going to be able to have the kind of relationship with God that other people seem to find no problem having. Having a truly authentic relationship with God scares the crap out of me, and that’s entirely because of the men that have infiltrated my life throughout the years.

Now that I am here, I realize that the reason I am so afraid is that God was used as a weapon against me and I don’t know how to get right with that. I don’t know how to accept God into my heart without forgiving the men who abused me and I am not ready to forgive them yet. I don’t know how.

I don’t know how to get right with God, but I am working on it.

Sending all my love,

Devon J Hall

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