11 August 2013

Carol Urton Guest Post


Carol Urton

Carol Urton Guest Post

When Carrie asked me to do a guest post on Overcoming With God about a topic in my book, I was overwhelmed. How can I pick just one topic? I decided on one area most people struggle with when dealing with hurts from their past. Numerous people tell me the thing that has a stronghold on their lives is the ability to forgive the person, or people, who hurt them.

I was abandoned at age two by my father. Shortly after, I was thrust into a life of unrelenting sexual abuse and child pornography when my mother remarried a deacon in our local church. After nine years I finally brought this dark family secret into light, only to be silenced and sent away to live with my grandparents. At age 14 I began the journey of trying to find peace among the shattered pieces of my life.

After years of running from the truth, I had to face my past.  I began to try and answer my biggest question. ”Where Was God?” But there wasn’t an easy answer to that question and the abandonment I felt from God was not easily solved.  But I knew I had to make a choice, I had to choose life and I had to make a choice to be free. And it is a choice to begin a process of recovery, not a quick fix. Through this process was the realization that in order to truly be free, I had to forgive. I had a lot to learn about forgiveness. Here are a few questions I battled with and the short version of the answers God gave me:
What if the person is not sorry? Forgiveness does not always mean reconciliation. The people in my life that hurt me never did acknowledge any harm done, nor did they ever say they were sorry.

What if I don’t feel forgiveness in my heart? Take a step and do it anyway. Feelings come and go, God tells us to forgive . . . He will take care of the rest.

What if the other person does not accept your forgiveness? After my well thought out speech I gave the person who did the most damage in my life, he simply replied, “Tough break for you kid.”
What if I still feel angry after I forgive? Forgiveness is not an instant remedy. I had to ask God to help me forgive, time after time after time.

The people I forgave are all still the same today as they were yesterday. But I am growing and I am living in the wonderful grace of God. I finally had to realize that if I didn’t forgive, if I was going to wait for the debt they owed me to be repaid, I would be tied to them forever. Once I forgave their debts, no matter how underserving they were, I cut the tie that kept us bound together. What did taking this life-changing step do for me? It set me FREE.

Carol Urton is an Author and national lecturer. She has been invited to speak at numerous conferences, workshops and retreats. She has been a featured guest on several radio and television programs. Her long awaited book, "Where is God? When Hope Hurts" was released in January 2013.
www.carolurton.wordpress.com

Giveaway:  Carol is giving away a copy of her book to one of our readers.  Please leave a comment and your email address to enter.


23 comments:

  1. CAROL, thank you so much for being with us this week on OWG. Being a victim of child abuse myself, I can totally relate to your testimony. I had to go through the whole process of forgiveness as well. Not easy, but the rewards are so worth it! Sometimes freedom comes at a high price, but the Lord enables us.

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    1. Thank you Diana for the opportunity! And you are right, not easy but the result is so worth the effort. God Bless Diana!!

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  2. CAROL what an amazing testimony of God's grace. After reading this I stand in awe of the power of our GOD, you could have chosen to hold on to this forever and nurse your hurt and torment into hatred. Praise God you chose life in Christ.

    My family was hurt years ago by the Pastor of the church we attended but instead of letting it cause us to turn our backs on the Church we chose to go where God led us. Right after that happened my husband and I were the worship leaders of a small church on an Indian Reservation for two years. It was the most gratifying thing we have ever done. God knew what was going to happen and He made the way for us, what satan meant for bad God turned it into good.

    Thank you for sharing this powerful testimony with us on OWG.

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    1. Praise God Teresa! I have found that He always has something better on the other side of our pain. Thank you for your kind words and yes, it is by the power of God alone I have overcome. Now, my journey is to help others find freedom in Christ. Blessings!

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  3. Wonderful Testimony of God's love and forgiveness...
    I have found that harboring things doesn't help , never did...
    Letting go and forgiving allowed much healing and allowed me to go on
    in life after being hurt alot.
    The Lord Bless you.
    Thank you for sharing and Thank you Carrie for having her share with us.
    Love in Jesus
    Linda Finn
    faithfulacres7@gmail.com

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    1. My pleasure Linda! It has been an honor to share.

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  4. Carol, what an awesome post!! I've always said you really don't know how it feels until you've been in their shoes. There's no way I can ever know what you have been through. I believe you're an amazing person for sharing your life's testimony. Thank you for sharing with us.
    Barbara Thompson
    barbmaci61(at)yahoo(dot)com

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    1. Barbara, it certainly has been an honor. I always say that you can't measure pain. We all have experienced different things and it's awesome when we can share with each other! I so appreciate you reading and your kind words!!

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  5. I can't imagine life the way you experienced it, Carol. You are truly an inspiration. Thank you for sharing.

    cindialtman(at)gmail(dot)com

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  6. My pleasure Cindi. That's the awesome thing...God can completely restore and give us new life! Today, while life certainly isn't perfect, I am filled with peace and joy. Blessings!

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  7. Thank you so much CAROL for sharing your powerful testimony here on OWG! I am in awe that after everything you went through, you were able to begin your journey at just 14 yrs of age to find the peace you so desperately needed and so richly deserved.

    For different reasons, but still incredibly painful, I have had to pull away from some of my family. I always struggle with knowing whether I actually forgive them or not, as the hurt is still there if I allow the memories to surface. And I guess also because I have to keep my distance or risk the same betrayals yet again. Do you think one can forgive, and yet continue to keep their distance?

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  8. Neola, I highly recommend you read my book and follow my blog! I speak directly to this through my story. Forgiveness and reconciliation can be two completely different things, especially when your emotional or physical health is at stake. In my case, I have completely forgiven and I have no ill will towards those who hurt me. However, since there is no change on their end I have to keep my distance for my own sake and the sake of my children. Each situation is different. The wonderful thing is that we serve an awesome God who knows and sees all. Keep praying for them and He will show you the way. I will commit to praying for you too. Blessings today!

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  9. Forgiveness is so incredibly hard to do. I struggle with that with family members. Thank you for sharing and reminding me that forgiveness is not for THEM but for me. Wonderful post!
    lattebooks at hotmail dot com

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  10. Thanks for sharing.I am definately going read your book.I have struggled with personal family issues for a very long time now.And I feel this book can help me understand and let go of the pain and heartache.Thanks again

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    1. Jacke, I hope the book helps you find some peace. Family struggles are very painful. We do have an awesome God who will walk through it with us. Blessings!

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  11. would love to win. angelachesnut246@gmail.com Angela from KY

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  12. it looks something too hard to forgive when someone goes through this kind of life when there is no help' Only GOD could help. Even when much smaller things need forgiving it is still hard to do when the other person isn't sorry, or won't admit to their part. And, I've not gotten to where I don't still remember this from time to time. But hasn't kept me from loving these people and spending time with them when I can. But some things I hear like this story is so much harder. Carol, I would love to win this book. Thanks for this chance. I love you Carrie and the others at OWG. I had such a wonderful, loving childhood, I wish it for all children.
    MAXIE mac262(at)me(dot)com

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    1. Maxie, I agree. It is just not human nature to want to forgive no matter how big or small. The results are amazing though. Thank you for your kind words!

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  13. Wonderful post, Carol - so powerful! Agree with you totally. My trust in God is presently helping relieve the pain I feel because of false accusations from a family member. Would love to read your book - thanks for the opportunity to win a copy!

    bonnieroof60(at)yahoo(dot)com

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  14. Thanks Bonnie! God is good and so glad you are trusting in Him. He will make all things right! Good luck!

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  15. Please let's enter my sis-in-law, BARBARA, who has been too sick to get on the computer this week. She would love to win Carol's book as she was severely abused as a young girl and suffers alot of illness to this day as a result of it.

    Barbara Smith
    thatoldgal@gmail.com

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