Tomorrow night is the Major League Baseball All-Star Game. I have to be honest with you and tell you that I’m not much into baseball. Our family will watch portions of World Series games in October, but we’ve never really been captivated by the sport.
On, Tuesday May 1, 2012 we finished watching SportsCenter and were making our way to the dinner table when a story came on that transcends baseball and captured our entire family.
It was the story of a well traveled major league pitcher that has experienced years of disappointment, pain and abuse. At 37 years old, R.A. Dickey has finally been able to overcome the darkness of his past and has started to live his life in true freedom.
R.A. Dickey shares his story of sexual abuse he began experiencing when he was just 8 years old. He would be abused sexually on multiple occasions. Because of the shame and guilt he felt from the abuse, he chose to not tell anyone and began to block out the pain by excelling in sports. He felt like he was damaged goods in every area of his life, but baseball.
I won’t share his entire story, you can watch the 13 minute video from ESPN HERE.
No matter how talented, beautiful, rich or successful we are, brokenness eventually catches up to us. Unresolved pain begins to affect every aspect of our lives. His is an amazing story of abuse, success, love, grace, pain, healing and hope.
Here is why I am writing this post today. The story first aired May 1, just as baseball season was starting. There was no way to know what kind of season R.A. Dickey would have.
The story wasn’t really even about baseball as much as it was about a major league baseball player bringing his secrets, his pain, his abuse and his failures out into the light. You could see him feeling lighter and more free as he shared such a painful story.
A few days ago, I saw a statistic flash across the television that said, “R.A. Dickey extends his win streak to 10 games. He is 12-2 on the year.” He will play in the All-Star Game tomorrow night.
There is something powerful about bringing into light what wants to live in darkness. Being honest and transparent allows God to make us more of the person He created us to be. We aren’t healed instantly, but healing can finally begin.
R.A Dickey sharing his story didn’t make him a better baseball player…it made him a more complete version of who he was created to be.
When I shared with Trisha that I was sexually abused as a child after keeping that secret for 25 years it was like a ten ton weight was lifted off of my heart. It didn’t bring immediate healing, but it opened a part of my heart up to healing that had never been open before. God could redeem the most damaged parts of me.
Maybe you’ve been keeping a secret for years. Maybe you were abused as a child. Maybe you were date-raped in high school. Maybe you we sexually abused by a family member. You have worked for years to keep that damaged part of your heart hidden and secret, hoping that time will heal that wound.
Because of that abuse, you have problems in your marriage that have nothing to do with your marriage. You have difficulty trusting friends or trusting your spouse or having deep relationships. You feel like you are damaged. You think you are broken beyond repair.
You are not damaged goods. God longs to redeem your hurt; your past; your abuse; your pain. The first step is to give it Him. The second step is to share it with someone else. For me, years of counseling has followed those two steps, and has made all of the difference.
God doesn’t want to improve the broken parts of you, He wants to recreate you.
You are not alone. You are not crazy. There is hope and there is healing.
God redeems the most damaged parts of us.