04 April 2005

Why Doesn't God Answer the Prayers of Abused Women?

From an email on the charislist@yahoogroups.com list
I can answer this too...

Being in an abusive situation is not that easy to get out of! It took me a year of abuse to finally make the decision. For me, I was willing to go through anything *myself* (albeit misguidedly) thinking I was being obedient to God as a "submissive" wife. Only when he turned on the children did something inside me light a spark and cause me to phone the Police to him.

It's a strange thing that mothers can put up with a lot, personally, but touch their kids, and most mothers will fight back powerfully!

I take the point made that not all mothers protect their young in that way - which is kind of why I qualified it with, "in their right minds"!

I don't believe I was "in my right mind" all the time I put up with abuse personally, but I believe I was when I saw my children being turned on and protected them - no matter what the cost to me.

As regards praying to God.... sometimes these things take time to fix. We can pray and pray but the way forward is not always as clear as we would wish it could be! Certainly, as a Christian wife - the option of leaving my husband was *not* clear, because there seemed to be no Biblical reason. I felt I was in the position similar to Rahab - whatever she did, it was a wrong choice .. she either caused the spies to be killed - bad choice... or she lied.. also a bad choice... she had to do the lesser of two evils in that situation.

I finally figured that God *might* have expected *me* to choose to submit to my husband, despite abuse, but I certainly did not have the right to expect that my children should, as innocent victims, be put up with it because of *my* choice. I had to choose the lesser of two evils... divorcing my husband to protect my children.

Did I believe God was there? Did I believe God was answering my prayers? OH yes. I knew God was there. Never before did I know God so close to me as I did then and do now... but I also knew that He was saying it would take time to fix the situation, and He would work things out to do that... which, eventually, He did, and I had a perfectly valid reason to call the Police and have him arrested.

I remember one day in particular, during a very troubled afternoon where I had been the victim of much verbal abuse for hours - and my daughter had witnessed this - she sat very quietly on the sofa reading her Bible... then when he went out of the room, she pointed a verse to me... "I shall trust in God until this trial is past".

Out of the mouths of babes! I knew that was what God was saying to me. And so many times during that period, I knew God was speaking to me, encouraging me, telling me it *would* end, but I had to wait for *Him* to work His ways out.

Do I still pray? Oh yes. Do I still trust God? More so than ever before! Why? Because He proved that through the hardest time of my life - He never once left us alone to fend for ourselves, and He provided a way out. He is forever faithful.

Why does He take His time in answering some of these prayers? Why does it seem that, for years, He is doing nothing?

I don't know. Like Joanna - I plan to ask Him! But on a personal level, I *know* He was there, I *know* He was saying constantly, "trust me" and I know He got us out of that situation in a way I could not have orchestrated myself if I had spent years figuring it out!