Rainbow of Hope

rainbow-God-is-faithful

Rainbows proclaim hope. An assurance that God will always keep His promises. A confirmation that He is with us even in the darkest of times. A sign of His faithful love and care over us always and forever.

Over twenty years ago, shortly after I finally admitted to myself I was abused many years earlier and I began to deal with it, I went to a retreat for those who were victims of clergy abuse.

When I walked through the doors, I wanted to turn around and run back to my car and go home. Shame, fear, and hopelessness consumed me.

Then I saw her standing at the windows covering one wall. A nun staring out the window. As she stood there, a rainbow broke through the stormy clouds and brightened the sky.

The rainbow drew me to the window next to her. We were hushed with awe for several minutes.

Then she whispered, “I asked God for a sign.”

She shared her story of abuse by a priest and how afraid she was to be there. But God confirmed to her through the rainbow that she was where He wanted her to be.

This glorious rainbow inspired in both of us hope that God was on our side, He always keeps His promises, and He will never, ever abandon us.

Those days were gut-wrenching as we worked through the unspeakable pain of sexual and spiritual abuse from clergymen. I probably didn’t get as much benefit out of it as I could have if I had dared to open up more, but God still boosted me on the road to healing.

Two women pastors led the retreat, and on the final day, they held communion to whoever wanted to join them. Love, acceptance, and support warmed the atmosphere. One woman stood rooted to the floor several feet away. Her pain was so deep, and she wasn’t sure she belonged. Could she trust the love Jesus offers? Did He even want her? We gathered around her with love and assurance and God crumbled her defensive veneer. She stepped forward with us, and with tears flowing, we remembered how Jesus offered up His broken body and poured out His life blood for us.

I was still in deep pain but I had a renewed hope that God held us in His loving hands. Even though the healing journey would be painful, He would be with us every step of the way. And He has been, even though there were countless times when I felt like He had abandoned me. In hindsight I can see He was there even in those dark times of despair.

As one of the projects, each of us had a piece of construction paper with our name written in the middle of it and uplifting stickers on it. We were to write an encouragement or praise on everyone’s page. After we went home, the leaders sent our page to us. I still have it.

As I reread all the kind remarks, there is one that I want to pass on to you:

“Keep talking. Don’t allow Satan to take anymore from you than he has. You know where your power lies. In the Creator of the universe, the Creator of you. Call on His healing. He loves you, (insert your name here), and so do I.”

If you have been abused, in whatever way, don’t let Satan silence you or discourage you with his lies. Don’t let him rob you of your God-given voice. His power is nothing compared to God who created you. God has the power and the willingness to heal you. He even finds joyous delight in healing you.

There have been times in my life when I felt like a bruised and bleeding body tossed to the side of the road. No one saw me and no one cared. Then Jesus tenderly picked me up and held me to His bosom, cradling me with His love and compassion. He desires to do that for each of us again and again.

The healing process can be long and painful and downright overwhelming, but He is right beside us longing for us to trust Him as our Safe Refuge, to allow His grace to heal us, and to open our hearts to His love.

The next time you see a rainbow, whether in the sky or in a photo, remember God is faithful and always keep His promises. He will never abandon you. He is beside you even on those days when you can’t “feel” Him or see His signs.

“For no matter how many promises God has made,
they are “Yes” in Christ. And so through Him
the “Amen” is spoken by us to the glory of God.”
2 Corinthians 1:20

“Whenever the rainbow appears in the clouds,
I will see it and remember the everlasting covenant
between God and all living creatures
of every kind on the earth.”
Genesis 9:16

“So be strong and courageous!
Do not be afraid and do not panic before them.
For the Lord your God will personally go ahead of you.
He will neither fail you nor abandon you.”
Deuteronomy 31:6 NLT

A Child's Trust

“Tell Your Heart To Beat Again”
by Danny Gokey

“Tell your heart to beat again
Close your eyes and breathe it in
Let the shadows fall away
Step into the light of grace…

Let every heartbreak
And every scar
Be a picture that reminds you
Who has carried you this far…”

signature2

40 thoughts on “Rainbow of Hope

  1. What an encouraging story Trudy, of bravery to speak up even by just being in a place, a retreat for healing. Yes, we do need to speak out loud against the enemy attacks and know that God is always there shining his perfect rainbow colours on us.

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    1. Thank you, Lynn. I’m so glad it was encouraging to you. I love the picture of God “shining His perfect rainbow colours on us.” That warms my heart. Thank you. May He help us to open our hearts to that truth in whatever situation we are in! Hugs!

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  2. So very beautiful, Trudy. Great is our God, mighty to save, to restore and heal. So thankful to Him for pursuing you and others at that retreat in gentle, loving kindness. Praying this post of yours encourages others to not be silenced by the enemy, so that they too may begin to walk toward healing and restoration in our Mighty Father’s embrace.

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    1. Thank you, Anna. Yes, our God is “mighty to save, to restore and heal.” Thank you so much for praying for others not to be silenced by the enemy. AMEN! I am so glad God gave you courage to write your story in a book, and I pray it also may lead others to “healing and restoration in our Mighty Father’s embrace.” I just ordered Love Embraced! 🙂 I’m looking forward to reading it. May God use us to His glory and to the welfare of hurting souls! Hugs!

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    1. Thank you for your love, compassion, and prayers, June. I am so thankful for Jesus, too! I would never have made it to this day without Him. He never promised we wouldn’t have troubles in this world, but He has promised He will get us through them. May He fill us with His love and grace day by day! Hugs!

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  3. What a precious gift is your story of healing, Trudy. I am hushed in awe as well to think, that the nun was the one who asked God for a sign. Yet, Jesus in His Mercy, knew that you needed that sign of hope as well. He let you share in the gift that was given to her. Isn’t that just like our God? He spreads His Mercy to those around us–we just never know when & how He will do that. I am so thankful that Jesus is spreading His gift of mercy through you, now, as you open your heart to share with us your journey through brokenness to freedom. –Blessings and Hugs to you.

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    1. Thank you, Bettie. Yes, isn’t it amazing how God works? He knew I, too, needed that sign of hope. And He knows your needs, too, my friend. I know life isn’t easy for you, but He is there for us, isn’t He? May He lead us ever deeper into freedom in Jesus! Hugs!

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  4. Oh Trudy, you are brave and courageous and beautiful. Thank you for sharing your story, for I know that you speak healing to other women when you do so.

    Praying for you and for your readers as this post goes out on wings to hurting women.

    Blessings, friend.

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    1. Thank you for your kind encouragement, Linda. Often I do not feel brave or beautiful, but in Jesus we really are, right? Thank you for also praying for other hurting women as well. As I get to know you more, I see such a “compassionate counselor” in you. I am sure you have helped many hurting women in your life, and you still do in your writing (and I’m sure in other ways as well). May God help us to speak healing in Jesus to those who are hurting! Hugs!

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  5. First the words from Deuteronomy 31 are some of my favorites. I will never tire of reading “be strong and courageous”. In fact, it is like a mantra to me.

    I am humbled over and over by your willingness to share so deeply with all of us. The pain, the lack of self-worth, and the secret that you carried has now been set free. I continue to pray for the healing of your heart as you walk ever closer to God in this journey.

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    1. Thank you for your compassion and prayers, Mary. I am often encouraged by that Deuteronomy verse as well, also Isaiah 41:10 – “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.” May we be strong and courageous in Jesus knowing He will never abandon us!” Hugs!

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  6. Thank you for sharing this message of hope. Those little signs from God are so precious in reminding us of his love. I love the reminder that while Satan’s lies are powerful they are nothing compared to the power of God. And thanks for sharing the song- I have never heard that before and it is beautiful!

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    1. Thank you, Carly. I’m so glad your heart was touched with encouragement. Satan’s lies can be so strong, but God is infinitely stronger. I just found that song, and I love it, too. May we step into the light of grace away from the shadows of discouragement, remembering He is out for our good! Hugs!

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  7. Beautiful, Trudy. I’m so thankful that God sent the rainbow to remind you of His presence and strengthen you for what was about to happen through the retreat. The remark you shared is powerful truth, too. Keep sharing, my friend … your work here is important!

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    1. Thank you for your encouraging words to keep sharing, Lois. Isn’t it amazing how God so graciously sends us signs of His love and faithful care? If I look back, I think it happens mostly when in the valley of discouragement. May He help us to cling to His amazing grace and unconditional love! Hugs!

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  8. “Yesterday’s a closing door/You don’t live there anymore” – oh how I needed this reminder! Beautiful, uplifting, encouraging post and song that reaches deep inside with healing waves. You help me to stay brave, to share the pain and the walking it out in grace. Crying as I type. God is working mightily through you, lovely friend. Blessings, hugs and gratitude for you and your words. Xx 💜

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    1. Thank you for your kind encouragement, Joy. I rejoice that you were uplifted and encouraged. It’s hard to remember we don’t have to live in the past anymore, isn’t it? God longs for us to step through His open door of healing grace and close the door to the lies Satan ties us down with. I have been aching for you and praying for you in this difficult season you are passing through, my friend. May God work His healing grace ever deeper into our hearts! Hugs!

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  9. Hi Trudy,
    I love it when I see a rainbow and remember God’s promises and just as you wrote, I think they’re very special times when we see one as a confirmation of his very personal love for us! Reading about your road to healing reveals just how strong you are and how courageous you were to access counseling and put yourself on the road to recovery — I admire you so much! God has used your experiences to encourage us all, friend! xo

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    1. Thank you, Valerie. I’m so grateful you are encouraged. I love your description of a rainbow as “a confirmation of His very personal love for us.” It’s amazing how God sends those rainbows personally to each of us. When people say I’m strong or courageous, I have to think – only through Jesus. Without Him I am so weak and fearful. May He continue to give us courage in this journey of life through whatever pathway He chooses to lead us! Hugs!

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  10. Hi Trudi- This made me think of hawaii- so many rainbows- like one everyday! God also used a rainbow in my life one time like that too- Thanks so much for sharing your journey-It is helping me- sending a hug

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    1. Hi Susie. A rainbow every day! Wow! I think I would love Hawaii. 🙂 I’m glad you had a good time. Isn’t God so good to send us rainbows, especially in those difficult seasons of life? A beautiful sign that He loves us and will be with us always. May we experience His love ever deeper! Hugs!

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  11. Trudy, I’m so sorry for the abuse you experienced. I hate that people who are supposed to teach us of God’s love betray. Yet, seeing past their evil to the truth of God’s love is huge. Thank you for sharing your story of the beginning of healing. May God continue to bless you as you continue to heal.

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    1. Thank you, Deb. Yes, that kind of betrayal goes deep, especially when they use God’s Holy Word to back up their actions. I could never be where I am today without God’s faithful love and healing grace. According to what I read at Lori’s, you have been through deep troubles, too. I loved your post. May God grant us ever deeper healing! Hugs!

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  12. Trudy,
    I do not have words adequate to express my deep respect and love for you. The hope you offer here is so powerful. So beautiful. So life giving. Brave and courageous friend, I know I have said it before, but I treasure you!
    Much love,
    Lori

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  13. He loves us so much and will show Himself present if we only but have eyes to see Him. Grateful for rainbows and the hope and promise they carry into our hearts.

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    1. Welcome Simply Surrender. I’m sorry I can’t find your name, but know I care just the same. I tried to find a website called this, but with no success. Do you have one? I’m so grateful for rainbows, too, and how God gives us hope and promise through them. May we have eyes to see Him and may we simply surrender to Him and His ways! Hugs!

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  14. Trudy,
    What courage for you, the nun, and each person there at the retreat. And yes, God is faithful and His power is greater than the evil Satan causes…Praying God continues the good healing work He has begun in you and in each of those dear ladies. It makes me so sad to think of what you and the other ladies have suffered. Keep speaking your story and encouraging others, my brave friend…HUGS.

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    1. Thank you for your compassion, Dolly. There was so much pain there. I sometimes wonder how the other women are doing today as we never kept in touch after that retreat. I just hope and pray they all continued in the healing work God began. May we both keep speaking our stories and encouraging others to the glory of God! Hugs!

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  15. Trudy, thank you for having the courage to share your heart so others may find hope and healing. I am sorry for the abuse you experienced. While not abused in a church setting, I was date raped back when I was 15. I didn’t realize what it was until about 3 years ago. I wrote about it for a guest post on another blog. (I can send the link to you if you’d like to read it). I remember how scared I was to begin to share, but it really helped me to find hope and healing, as well as helping others in the same way. You are a blessing!

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    1. Barbie, I am so, so sorry you were date raped. Though you didn’t know what it was until three years ago, I’m sure it affected you in so many ways even before that since you were stolen from. How devastating! I’m so glad the silence was broken and you began to share and are finding hope and healing. Yes, you definitely can send me the link or even share it here if you like. May God give us ever deeper healing! Hugs!

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  16. Hi, Trudy! I’m so, so glad to have discovered you and your blog. Though I was never physically abused growing up, there were many instances when I felt worthless and unloved because I could never seem to measure up to my mother’s standards. I had no Jesus back then, so had no compass to point me in the right direction. Thank goodness He found me!!!
    I also blog and am sharing a link I posted in April about the hope God gives us through the rainbow. I do hope you will visit!
    http://marthaorlando.blogspot.com/2016/04/everlasting-covenant.html

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    1. I’m so, so sorry for your pain of growing up feeling worthless and unloved, Martha. I’m so glad you now know Jesus as your Rescuer and Healer. May God help us to keep finding our worth and identity in Jesus, not in how others treat us! Hugs!

      Thank you for the link. I checked it out and commented. That’s an awesome rainbow! Isn’t God so good to send us signs and seals of His faithful love?

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  17. Thank you for sharing your story. Even for those of us who have never suffered abuse, we have broken moments, broken times and broken lives that only the faithful love of God can heal. May God give you grace as you continue to heal and boldness as you continue to share. In His Love, Delores.

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    1. Thank you, Delores. Yes, there are so many “broken moments, broken times, and broken lives.” So many are hurting in one way or another. So true that only the faithful love of God can heal. We all need Him so much, don’t we? May He give healing to all our brokenness! Hugs!

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