“It happened on a Sunday night, even though I’d been a good girl and gone to church that morning.”
One night, Ruth Everhart and her roommates were awakened by the presence of intruders in their home. They were held hostage at gunpoint and raped.
Ruth felt ruined; emotionally, mentally, physically, and spiritually, and she was also angry.
“One thing that was really helpful was that we gave each other permission to be angry.”
Ruth admits that she probably overlearned the concept of being a nice girl and so she wasn’t really sure if she was allowed to be angry.
“I had to make peace with being angry. To have my friends be able to be angry and for us to be angry together was actually quite liberating in many ways.”
Recently Ruth felt compelled to visit the neighborhood of the house they had lived in during the attack. Quietly sitting in her car, Ruth watched some men wander around the neighborhood. Her heart raced as her stomach tied itself in knots. That’s when she lost it, pounded the steering wheel, and screamed at God.
“That wordless screaming at God, was a whole new prayer for me because you can’t be mad at someone that doesn’t exist. It was a whole new kind of expression.”
Ruth questioned whether God wanted her anger or if He could even handle it.
“God can take our anger; He is not nearly as surprised or uncomfortable with it as we are.”
Showing God how she truly felt had a cathartic effect on Ruth.
“I felt held, I felt like the abandonment wasn’t forever, that I would move beyond that feeling.”
God wants our emotions, and He can handle them. Often we can’t be truly free unless we express our emotions to God without reservation.
Ruth Everhart is a writer and a Presbyterian pastor who has been serving churches for more than two decades. She is the author of . She is a blogger and speaker who lives in the Washington, DC area with her family.
Key Scripture: Mark 5:34
Featured Songs: More Than Conquerors – Steven Curtis Chapman; The God I Know – Love & the Outcome; Trust in You – Lauren DaigleRuined