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Reflecting on Our Posture Toward Sexual Abuse Survivors

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What can we learn from the story of Tamar and Amnon?

I was moved and astonished as the pastor spoke. He was preaching about the rape of Tamar. Tamar was the beautiful virgin daughter of King David who was raped by her brother Amnon (2 Sam. 13).

The pastor was acknowledging that the people of God caused suffering and that traumatic events could happen in holy places.

I must admit I was surprised at such a bold message coming from the pulpit, and it stirred hope within me.

Unfortunately, those feelings were short-lived as the pastor wrapped up his message with a warning that although these things happen, we ought not to talk about them to people outside of our families—if we dare speak about them at all.

At that moment, my heart broke, and my anger rose. It was as if the breath had been knocked out of me. I wondered how many others in the pews around me had experiences of trauma and abuse, how many were feeling the beginnings of hope, of the opening of space to share stories that need sacred space to be told, to receive help, only to have it crushed in an instant.

Sadly, this is something that appears to be common in many communities of faith—being silent on matters of abuse and silencing and shaming survivors of various forms of sexual trauma.

However, if we examine the story of 2 Samuel 13, we see that being silent and not naming the evil that had been done to Tamar caused more turmoil and wrath within the family unit.

In my work as a psychologist, one of the things that is most detrimental to survivors is the dismissal and silencing of the survivor by those they chose to turn to for help.

After being silenced by her brother Absalom (2 Sam. 13:20), to whom she turned, Tamar is described as a “bitter and desolate” woman. Not only had her rights been violated …

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GOD DOES NOT REWARD FALSE CHARITY – Matthew

Honest Charity Deserves Good Reward

It is good to be good! When we act in good faith, people are blessed, and God is glorified.

No doubt that God sees our charity efforts. He is surely keeping the record, and he will reward them in due time.

God and his angels rejoice when someone goes out of his way to bless his fellow human being, but not only are heavenly hosts celebrating the good deed, but God keeps the record; he will hands down his good reward for the effort.

Since an act of charity is honorable in the sight of the Lord, Christians are encouraged to engage in it.

Charity Worker, Check Your Motive

Not all charity works are visible to others, but some can’t really be kept secret from the public eyes. In such a situation, people may acknowledge and shower praises on the worker. However, the charity worker must take caution and not get carried away with the praises he receives.

A person who does a thing to receive human praise has gotten all he deserves. He may not necessarily receive God’s reward afterward since he’s all out seeking human’s approval and praises.

Seek God’s Endorsement, not a human endorsement! #endorse

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As children of God, our efforts must not focus on receiving human’s praises but must focus on glorifying God.

When selfishness is not the driving motive, the result of our efforts will be so praise-worthy in the presence of God.

Meanwhile, besides any human’s praises and acknowledgment, God knows how best to reward our righteous services that focus on helping humanity and glorifying the name of God.

God will reciprocate our true efforts with riches and glory in his kingdom. He will also bless us on earth.

“Therefore, when you do a charitable deed, do not sound a trumpet before you as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may have glory from men. Assuredly, I say to you; they have their reward. But when you do a charitable deed, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, that your charitable deed may be in secret; and your Father who sees in secret will Himself reward you openly. (Matthew 6:2-4).

God’s Reward Awaits Your True Services

God is an honest deity; he also respects people who share the same attribute. True worshipers score a high mark with God, but people’s pleasers won’t go far!

As a child of God, you should evaluate your motive in any matter.

Ask yourself, “Why am I doing what I’m doing: Am I doing it to receive human’s praises, or I’m doing it to receive God’s praises?”

Self-seeking praise may go well with humans, but it doesn’t go well with God. Let your efforts be motivated by love; let your action glorify God! 

Allow God to Guide Your Actions Human flesh is in enmity with God – Flesh will encourage you to go in the way of human satisfaction, which means you will have to seek human praises to meet the demand. The flesh will motivate you to parade your charity, but the Holy Spirit of God can help you overcome that challenge. Those who are led by the Spirit are the children of God! Ask God to give you the strength and power not to be selfish nor seek

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