Crisis Support Recommendation (Christian Perspective)
1. If you are not physically or feel emotionally safe in your crisis, get to safety. This may sound strange, but work to pray for, forgive, and love the individual or group who has threatened your safety. Luke 6:27-32 Matthew 18:21-35 While maintaining your safety, work to get your offender help without condemning them. Your emotional freedom and strength will come from the compassion, empathy, and forgiveness you can give your offenders. One day, if not perhaps even today, you will also be the offender in need of grace.
2. Know God loves you and does not condemn you. God fully hurts with you. We don't like to think about it, please remember that God also hurts for and with your offender. He loves ALL his children and creation. He knows that hurt people hurt people. Will you help stop the cycle? From a place of safety, you can help stop the cycle, by helping your offender get help, forgiving them, and giving them grace. Jesus set the example for giving forgiveness, grace, and unconditional love. The good news is that Jesus offers those who follow him the Holy Spirit to help them live out what seem like impossible values. John 3:16-17 John 14 1 John
3. Read the bible. Have you read the Bible for yourself recently? If not, we recommend starting with what is called the gospel which include the books of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. Matthew, Mark, Luke and John were followers of Christ who wrote each their own account of living life with Jesus Christ. Start there and earnestly pray to God to reveal himself to you, to comfort you, and to give you the strength to receive and share the unconditional grace and love none of us deserve.
Special note: God's ways are very different than ours. So be prepared. God may ask you to think and act differently than you are used to. For example: He may ask you to love or even bless the person who has hurt you or others. He may ask you to not let victimhood become your identity. Victimhood is like taking poison hoping it will help you feel better. He also will likely ask you to seek forgiveness for people you have hurt.
4. Pray. Ask a few trusted individuals to privately pray for you and walk with you through your situation.
Special note: Be extra wise in your crisis when your emotions will guide you otherwise in selecting "trusted individuals". Do not trust anyone who will only "pray" and care for only your side of the situation. Without you knowing, such individuals will seek to feed your victimhood in order to win your affections, and feed their pride about themselves. They will strongly sympathize with you, comfort you, and join you in your condemnation of your offender. They will encourage you to focus on yourself and your pain, quietly imprisoning you in victimhood and their perpetual righteousness and care over you. Helping you reconcile or truly heal never really occurs because this would take away your need for them. These individuals are what the Bible describe as wolves in sheep's clothing who often will appear as your "rescue" in the heat of your crisis. These individuals hide well in the church or other places of support to people in pain. Wounds from a friend can be trusted, but an enemy multiplies kisses. Proverbs 27:6
We overcome our pain, regain our self-confidence, and achieve our highest level of fulfillment the day we can forgive and show love to those who hurt us. Likewise we are re-empowered when we take responsibility for how we have hurt others and receive God's forgiveness, love, and grace.
5. Commit to serve others through a local church. Go to a local church for prayer and a referral to biblical counseling resources. Why biblical versus secular counsel? Read here and here. Join, serve, and love your local church family. Church is an adopted extended family God has given us to help us care for each other.
Special note: It is guaranteed that in time you will be let down and hurt by people in your church family. Pray for your family and plan to give your family grace. It is also guaranteed that in time, you will be that person in church hurting others and needing grace. You too one day will likely also deny or not recognize your sin or capacity to hurt others. It is important to always remember how we all need grace just as much as anyone else. Healthy churches and relationships are known for how humility, truth (accountability), and grace are exchanged equally with unwavering and unconditional mutual respect. As you read the gospel, the bible, and examine history, notice the countless examples where self-righteousness, victimhood, or other beliefs of superiority over others or God have been at the root of the greatest tragedies against humanity .
5. Pray for others. Joining others in their struggles helps you get through your own. This also models Christ who came to serve, and not be served, to include serving even those who hated him. Matthew 20:28 Praying and caring for others, even in the midst of our pain, helps prevent us from hurting others. It also helps prevent us from making our pain the idol of our universe instead of God and others.