Today is recognized as ‘Good Friday’-the day that Jesus Christ was crucified. It is always followed by Easter or Resurrection Sunday. From a religious standpoint, it is celebrated as a time to give thanks and recognition to Jesus for interceding on our behalf and ultimately giving his life in order to save mankind. For me, it isn’t about whether you believe it, celebrate it or accept it. Domestic violence comes in all walks of life and ones religious background, or lack thereof, doesn’t make you exempt to being a victim. Nor, does it play a role in whether or not you know or interact with someone who is. The thoughts I choose to express in this piece have more to do with the symbolism of crucifixion and the resurrection of one transforming from victim to victorious.

Victims are terrorized mentally, physically, spiritually, emotionally and financially. Usually, it’s never any one specific way.  The pain can be excruciating. It can bring you to the point of emotional instability, financial ruin, questionable faith and total lack of self esteem. You feel like you can’t go on, that you can’t endure. The pain is just too great. No one understands your burdens. No one can help you. One of the reasons that a victim remains a victim is the fear that no one cares, understands or is willing to intervene. And with intimate partner abuse, it’s hard to understand how the one you love, protect and support would mistreat you. It causes a great deal of confusion and makes trust almost nonexistent.

So, what does any of this have to do with Jesus, his crucifixion or his resurrection? The story of Jesus’ crucifixion also involves betrayal of trust with money, verbal taunts, spiritual degradation and physical beatings. He cried out to God. He endured indescribable pain. He felt hurt and betrayed. He didn’t think he could go on. Ultimately, he died. But, as the biblical gospels describe, he rose again, hence, resurrection Sunday. He had renewed power and strength. He was a conqueror.

As advocates, we have to be sincere & trustworthy intercessors for those who need help. Just as a victim is transitioning out of his or her situation, they are often at their lowest point of frustration. They need us. They need to know that we are there to walk with them and help them get through what may be the hardest time of their lives. As victims, they will come to realize their season of resurrection. They will rise from scorn, pity and questionable faith into a strong, thriving individual with a victorious state of mind.

I speak these words from experience. As a former victim, I could not imagine being in the state of mind I now enjoy. I have come out of my situation a stronger and better person. I’m do not feel defeated. I feel renewed. That would not have been possible without the assistance of others who saw my potential and desire for change. I encourage everyone to give the gift of life by helping someone to restore their mind, body and spirit. Help them bury those things which hinder them from fully enjoying the quality of life that they deserve.