Last May, at our spring residency, my School of the Spirit class spent five days on the theme of the cross. It was a challenging but rich time, and I came away from that residency changed. One morning we spent about two and a half hours in extended worship. Out of that silence, I gave the following message:
I've been spending a lot of time at my own cross, last night and this morning. I know that many of us have these―times of evil and pain in our lives. My cross is a bridge. It's the bridge in front of my apartment. And when I am there, I can hear his voice, the man whose face I don't remember, mocking me, asking where I am going and if he can come too. I crossed the bridge and I could see my apartment in front of me. I thought if I could just make it there . . . but I couldn't. And I can feel his hand covering my mouth and his arms pinning mine as he starts to drag me under that bridge.And later, singing:
For some people, this is not a story, because that is all that happened. I wasn't raped and I wasn't killed. But part of me died that day, and it is my story.
As we have talked about the cross, what has come to me is that we don't just tell the story of the crucifixion one time and then we're done with it. We tell the story over and over, and at different times, it means different things.
Sometimes when I tell my story, I am so angry. I am angry that this happened to me and I want to know, where were my angels? Why did God let this happen? I am angry and I do not want to think that this story can be redeemed.
But sometimes I do, and I can see little bits of Light.
This is the day that the Lord has made,Giving this message was a powerful experience for me and for the people who heard it. It was also an important step for me in healing from my experience of sexual assault, which occurred when I was 20 years old. Even nine years later, this is still a tender subject for me, but I am sharing it here in the hope that it will be of some use.
I will rejoice and be glad in it.