Walk the Land Chapter 1
An Alternate Route
Welcome to Chapter 1 of Walk the Land. This book is the very personal story of my conversion at the hands of sexual abuse trauma. For those of you who have been sexually abused or who have suffered any other type of trauma, I am offering a trigger warning.
I am very sensitive to the needs of those of you who have suffered as I have suffered. Triggers can come from anywhere and without warning. Some of you may never have explored your trauma or are in therapy or counseling, and it may not be the right time to read my story.
For some others, this may provide a window into your own trauma or the trauma of someone that you may love. Originally, I had written a completely different chapter until God woke me up in the middle of the night and told me to change it. Vulnerability is never easy, but it is necessary to tell the truth so that we can heal.
Obedience to God is the greatest vulnerability of all.
I thank you in advance for supporting our work here at Missio Dei Catholic, which offers a safe space for Catholic writers like me to tell their stories. I’d love to hear your feedback, so please feel free to comment or email me at email@example.com
An Alternate Route
God came to me in a vision when I was three. Yes, I still remember it. It’s one of the very few things that I remember from my childhood. The rest I have neatly tucked away somewhere else for a later time.
He was gentle and vividly present, close but not so close that I could touch him. The encounter was peaceful and an exchange of spirit rather than an exchange of words. He was in heaven and I was on earth. It lasted several minutes, maybe more, but those minutes are etched in my memory like an eternal branding. I knew after that moment who God was, that I belonged to Him, that I was His. But what I didn’t know was why, why He chose to manifest Himself to me, what it meant, or who He was.
The shape in which God came to me was in the shape of a man. The encounter was deeply personal and a setup for what was to come. At three, I had nothing else to compare the experience with nor did I have any preconceived notions of what the God of the Jews looked like. I just relished in the importance of that visit and knew that this God-man who came to visit me was real.
I didn’t know it then, but I would need that visit. I would need it to always know God was real. But even more than that, I would need it to hold on to when the sexual abuse began.