Healed By His Hem

Hem of His Garment “God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I can not change,

the courage to change the things I can,

and the wisdom to know the difference.”

My childhood was colorful at best. As a child, I was not able to control the choices of the adults around me.  Such as my parents divorcing by the time I was age two, my mom marrying her third husband by the time I was 9, and moving during every school year.

I could not control the addiction to drugs and alcohol or the physical and mental abuse that were prevalent in my childhood surroundings.  All these factors were my normal.

I became a child of Christ as a teenager. Though drawn to God and his love, I didn’t emerge from teen-dom unscathed or leading a godly lifestyle.

By the time I was 19 I couldn’t look in the mirror and see anything I liked, let alone think that God could love me. Until one day …

I was at a ladies retreat where the altar had been opened up for prayer, inviting us to come spend time before God.  Kneeling at the altar, I remembered the Bible story about the woman with the issue of blood (Luke 8:43-48).

As I was praying, I realized that I was leaning forward on my knees with my hand outstretched, as if reaching for something.  But what?

I was reaching for Christ, knowing that if I could somehow just touch the hem of His garment, I too could be healed. 

That day I touched God, or rather He touched me and brought healing. My struggles were not over. In fact new troubles began as I was no longer willing or able to accept that I was worthless or damaged goods.

Genesis 50:19-21 tells us what man meant for evil God meant for good.  I could no longer live as a victim of life’s circumstance.  All of my “baggage” from the past had to be viewed through the filter of God.

That life-changing moment was the beginning of a painful process and journey that I am still trekking.  I must continually examine my life, confronting offenses of the past, both mine and others. But oh, the healing that God has brought about as a result.

I’ve experienced things in my childhood that no child should. But I’ve also experienced miraculous healing.  I am a survivor of my past, of abuse, of evil. 

I had another life-changing moment at age 23 when I began looking at the harm caused by my life’s experiences.  I acknowledged these events and experiences had first passed through God’s hand before impacting me.  Since I had to endure them, I asked God if he would use my wounds for His glory in a way that I might be able to offer Hope to those who are broken and to speak of His love and redemption.

We who have childhood wounds can sometimes have an edge.  Those of us who feel that we’ve already dealt with these pains can be the edgiest; it’s as if we’re trying to convince ourselves and others that we are “okay”.  These interactions can often feel void of true forgiveness.  Some of the things I encountered as a child are not okay.  But because I was willing for God to bring healing to the wounds, my wounds no longer hold me as a victim.

A few years ago, while sitting at my abuser’s deathbed, I felt God’s presence. 

 

As I prayed, I sensed this person was struggling with condemnation regarding actions towards me. God brought to mind the scripture,

“Therefore, [there is] now no condemnation (no adjudging guilty of wrong) for those who are in Christ Jesus, who live [and] walk not after the dictates of the flesh, but after the dictates of the Spirit.”. (Romans 8:1 Amplified)

This person had become a child of Christ.  Though what I experienced was not godly, who was I to stand in judgment and condemn?  In those last moments, I shared the scripture from Romans 8:1 adding,

“He does not condemn you, neither do I.  I love you.  Go in peace.” 

I will never know which of us God intended to comfort using my words.  And it really doesn’t matter.

Because of the great healing I have received, I am able to walk in wholeness.

Yes, I was abused, a fact I will share as I feel led by God. However, I am not a victim.

I don’t excuse the actions done to me, but I do realize that “Hurting people, hurt people.”  No doubt I’ve done my share of damage too.

I don’t believe God intended my healing to only benefit me. It continues to be my desire that God uses me to offer experience, strength and hope to those who are in the midst of their own battles.  My prayer is that as I offer my support to you, God will continue to bring others to support me as I persevere in my battles.

Meet my Friend and Guest Blogger:

Suzanne Kuhn 250x375

Suzanne Kuhn has more than 20 years of book retailing experience and event sales, including traveling as part of Karen Kingsbury’s team. In 2010 Suzanne launched SuzyQ, a full-service author promotion and retail development firm that works with authors, publishers and retailers, helping to coordinate events, train staff and authors in reader engagement, and develop promotions for increased sales and reader/customer loyalty. Suzanne’s experience and knowledge in the book retailing venue gives her an edge when consulting with retailers for niche and business plan development, facilitating book tours, and ensuring more successful and profitable events. Suzanne truly believes in the power of Christian literature to impact and change lives.

Connect with Suzanne:

SuzyQ4U.com

facebook.com/SuzyQ4You

twitter.com/SuzyQn

Suzanne@SuzyQ4U.com

36 responses to “Healed By His Hem

  1. I have always loved that story. I can see myself as that woman desperate and afraid reaching out to that one final hope. It is harder to feel the healing. Daily He teaches and accepts my fumbling efforts.

    • Kate, I love that story too! One of the elements of that story that I was not able to pull out in my blog is that once she touched His hem, He identified her. He could have allowed her to touch Him anonymously, but instead He identified her, encouraged her in her faith and then told her to “Go in peace”. He showed her such love and compassion, very publicly. I can’t help but think that was for the benefit of not only her but others too.

    • Carrie, thanks for taking the time to read my story. It’s my prayer that my story will be an encouragement to others to allow God to walk them through the full healing of wounds so that they too can walk in wholeness.

  2. Suzy, thank you so much for sharing your testimony. I have loved you since the first moment I met you. Praise the Lord for His healing. In the past year and a half that I have been working with substance abuse clients I have strived to adopt the same attitude of our Lord toward these people. I would like to hope that they see Jesus in me and see that they too can be healed.

    • Kathy, I felt the same about you when we first met. I know it may sound simple, but I often pray that God would give me eyes to see others has He sees them, that He would fill my heart with love for them, that I may be an avenue to show His love to those who are hurting. I pray that for you too.

    • Michele, thank you for walking with me as I have traveled these healing roads. God knew I couldn’t do it alone. I’m so blessed to have those around me who love me as you do, flaws and all.

  3. For someone who says she’s not a writer, you tell a wonderful (and terrible) story. For someone who has suffered deep pain, you extend great love. Your life radiates His grace. I’m thankful for your healing and life of abundance in Him. ❤

    • Heather, thank you for taking the time to read and reply to my post. Thank you for your encouragement. It is my prayer that by sharing my story others might find healing and joy.

  4. Thanks for sharing, Suzie. I started writing as a child so I could escape into a world with two parents, no financial problems, no alcohol etc.Jesus took me through it and made me a stronger person because of those years. Those troubles molded you and allowed God to make you into a vessel He uses in a mighty way in the lives of others today. What a Mighty God we serve.

    • Yes, indeed! What a Mighty God we serve! Martha, thank you for taking the time to read my story. Your comments show your transparency too. God certainly is able to take all our junk and use it for His good. Keep writing my friend. 🙂

  5. Very powerful. The power of love. What. a. testimony. May you continue to be blessed, and be a blessing.

  6. Suzie, I knew I was drawn to you at ACFW 2011 for a reason. I guess it’s the deep calling to deep in us. I was able to forgive when a new person came to church and repented for things similar to what was done to me. I had no problem feeling forgiving and merciful toward this stranger and new church member, and then I felt like God asked me if I was any more important than the stranger’s victim(s)? If I could forgive the stranger, I had to separate my own feelings from the past abuse and forgive my abuser just the same. God is so good in how He sets up stuff like that in our lives.

    • Crystal, thanks for sharing your story too. God is so faithful in continuing to give us opportunity to bring our hurts to Him. His loving kindness is absolutely amazing.

  7. Suzanne, your words are powerful, your message profound, but mostly your heart is revealed to be as beautiful as you. What gets me most in that Bible story, is the position one must take to touch the hem. For those of us who’ve had to protect ourselves, it’s not easy to be so vulnerable and yet his mercy and restoration is greater than we can ask or imagine.

    • Kristen, you are absolutely right! The posture that any one of us must take in order to touch the hem of His garment is one of vulnerability. For many of us that vulnerability can feel counter intuitive and yet is exactly what is needed to allow God bring about the healing we so desperately need. Thank you, my friend, for taking the time to not only read my story but to share your thoughts too.

  8. Suzanne thank you for your transparency. Your prayer was answered. I was blessed by your testimony. I truly understand. I was able to speak with my abuser and let him know he was forgiven. The Lord gave me the awesome privilege of sharing Christ with Him over the phone. He walked the aisle on Fathers day. However I was not able to be at his bedside when he went to be with Jesus. Thank you so much for sharing. I will pray that many others are healed by His hem and are led there by your testimony.

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