A Season of Renewal
by Vicki Kreisa
I found myself in a season of God moments with the beginning of the pandemic which all started with a crash of CPTSD. It’s hard for me to convey the enormity of the crash in words, simply put I was consumed by fear. The C of CPTSD stands for Complex because the root cause of the Traumatic includes a component of sexual abuse. All the emotional pain of the past came crashing in.
The abuse had happened in my early childhood by a minister of God. God has been so faithful in healing me after coming to faith in Him at the age of 27. Several godly pastors and my husband Charlie supported me and walked through long process of healing. Then another traumatic incident with another minister of God, though not of the same nature, deeply affected me emotionally.
After that, God led us, Charlie and I, to my current church and also Campus Life, where the leadership at both places began to minister to me; I began again to slowly trust in and appreciate the teaching and support I needed to heal again.
The emotional crash was not caused by COVID, but rather a totally different trigger that took me back emotionally to those painful times. And that was the first God moment–“shelter at home” allowed me the time I desperately needed to deal with the crash while isolated from the daily routines. The second God moment was finding support and needed counsel in the body of Christ in the leadership of Campus Life and my church, which I have to admit I had been holding at arm’s length as I attempted to protect myself from hurt again. I cannot express my gratitude to Charlie, Denise and Jim, Pastor Jeff and the elders of my church for their tender, loving care of my heart and soul as they all led me to trust My LORD again and find the healing in His Love. (Especially Denise, thank you!)
There were a GREAT series of God moments that led me through the year of healing. The first three months being, as I said, simply filled with intense fear. It seemed like no matter how hard I tried to apply all the truth I knew, I could not subdue the fear. God kept bringing me back to certain Scriptures to get me to let go of all my defenses.
“Be still and know that I am God” (Ps 46:10) as God encouraged me to just rest in Him and stop trying to fix it myself.
Ex. 14:14 “The Lord will fight for you; you need only be still”.
And Isaiah 41:10, “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 lift you up with my righteous right hand.”
So, I cried a lot in His presence; I listened to a lot of music every day to calm my fear, as well as reading Scripture and books to fill me with His Word. The support of Charlie’s prayers with me daily and the godly counsel and prayers of Denise helped greatly to keep my “eyes fixed on Jesus.”
This series of God moments as He pursued me was incredible. God brought me to Isaiah 40 which talks about the stars being numbered and named by Him, so how much more a Child of God. He put Lauren Daigle’s Look Up Child in my path, and this book led me every night to look to the stars in the sky and know that God was with me. Scriptures of God being the potter and all that implies, and a broken vase became a tool that God used to forge an intimacy with Him that amazed me as He reminded me that He puts broken pieces together, without fail. On a prayer walk, a rain cloud reminded me that He cries with me and for me and He was collecting all my tears in a bottle. I played the song “The God Who Sees” with its amazing video over and over and God’s presence would again cover me. Like Hagar, God continued to pursue me and knew my needs, and He came to meet me in my desert. Max Lucado’s book Before Amen was used to bring me to a place of a simple prayer based on the Lord’s Prayer to help me meet God daily. I could write for days about the many other ways God spoke to me during this time.
Finally, I asked the elders at my church to pray for healing, and God was faithful to answer the prayers of these righteous men of God (James 5), and the fear began to subside. Then the hard work of grieving, lamenting, confessing, repenting, forgiving and learning to lean into Jesus for His healing followed to bring me to the best God moment of all. Peace, joy and the deepest understanding of God’s love and kindness as He wrapped me in His arms in a way that I had yet to experience in my walk with Abba, my heavenly Father.