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Over the past decade, I have sat in living rooms, offices, hospitals, and other places and watched as tears flowed from victims of physical, sexual, and domestic abuse—people of all ages, ranging from 12 to 60. What I have learned is that this junk is not only real, it is a lifelong battle for many. I can hardly write or speak about the subject without anger burning inside of me that I have to control. Individuals, mostly women and children, created in the image of God, have been stripped of their God-given dignity by a coward who never dealt with his or her own sins and insecurities.

I’m angry. I’m frustrated. I’m sad. There are broken pieces everywhere. A shattered culture. Shattered lives. The pain and the memories linger for decades and sometimes for life. I wish I could just help people wash it away, but I can’t. I have also learned that there are many victims who never want to face the pain and thus never take the steps necessary to heal. It’s a vicious cycle and I can’t fix it.

What I can do, however, is offer hope. Hope for healing. Hope for wholeness. Hope for a new purpose and a new way of thinking. I don’t actually offer hope myself, but I know someone who does, and that’s exactly what we will talk about this Sunday in our “My Crazy Family” series. Will you come and bring someone with you? I am confident that God has a bright path forward.

If you are a victim of abuse, and feel comfortable sharing, would you email me your story at Your message will be confidential.

Carl Nichols

A native of south Atlanta, Carl has a passion for God, Julie, and sports. He and Julie have two sons, Jase and Trey. They have a heart to see people understand how crazy God is about them! Carl is the Lead Pastor at Relevant.

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