Or, How to Support People Who Are Leaving, or Are in, Abusive Relationships
There comes a day when the abused must change the course of their prayers. The abused person, and the people who say to be praying for them, has to realize that, sadly, they must pray for protection against the person who was supposed to love and care for them, who promised they would, who might even continue to pretend to do just that.
I’m not exactly sure I can convey in my writing exactly how that feels, to realize that I must pray for protection from evil, and that evil is my ex. I think David did a pretty good job in Psalm 55:
Give ear to my prayer, O God;
And do not hide Yourself from my supplication.
Give heed to me and answer me;
I am restless in my complaint and am surely distracted,
Because of the voice of the enemy,
Because of the pressure of the wicked;
For they bring down trouble upon me
And in anger they bear a grudge against me.
My heart is in anguish within me,
And the terrors of death have fallen upon me.
Fear and trembling come upon me,
And horror has overwhelmed me.
I said, “Oh, that I had wings like a dove!
I would fly away and be at rest.
“Behold, I would wander far away,
I would lodge in the wilderness. Selah.
“I would hasten to my place of refuge
From the stormy wind and tempest.”
Confuse, O Lord, divide their tongues,
For I have seen violence and strife in the city.
Day and night they go around her upon her walls,
And iniquity and mischief are in her midst.
Destruction is in her midst;
Oppression and deceit do not depart from her streets.
For it is not an enemy who reproaches me,
Then I could bear it;
Nor is it one who hates me who has exalted himself against me,
Then I could hide myself from him.
But it is you, a man my equal,
My companion and my familiar friend;
We who had sweet fellowship together
Walked in the house of God in the throng.
Let death come deceitfully upon them;
Let them go down alive to Sheol,
For evil is in their dwelling, in their midst.
As for me, I shall call upon God,
And the Lord will save me.
Evening and morning and at noon, I will complain and murmur,
And He will hear my voice.
He will redeem my soul in peace from the battle which is against me,
For they are many who strive with me.
God will hear and answer them—
Even the one who sits enthroned from of old— Selah.
With whom there is no change,
And who do not fear God.
He has put forth his hands against those who were at peace with him;
He has violated his covenant.
His speech was smoother than butter,
But his heart was war;
His words were softer than oil,
Yet they were drawn swords.
Cast your burden upon the Lord and He will sustain you;
He will never allow the righteous to be shaken.
But You, O God, will bring them down to the pit of destruction;
Men of bloodshed and deceit will not live out half their days.
But I will trust in You.