Many women who have been sexually assaulted endure a similar struggle: “God, where were you?”
That’s a gut-wrenching question with no easy answers, but it deserves a heart-felt response. Few people can offer hope and healing in the wake of sexual assault better than our guests on today’s and tomorrow’s programs, Leila Sommerfield and Kathleen Terrill.
They understand sexual assault as only survivors can, and they’ll be sharing exactly where they believe God was in the midst of some of their deepest suffering. They are convinced that God never abandoned them, even in the darkest of those moments. He understood their pain and stayed right there with them through it all.
April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month. The statistics are staggering. According to some studies, a woman in America is raped every minute of every day on average. The grief, shame, and humiliation these women face is devastating. Without help, anxiety, fear, and depression can last for decades.
Leila Sommerfield and Kathleen Terrill are both courageous and empathetic, and I know their stories can help a lot of women who are suffering silently. The Christian community needs to be attuned to this evil in our culture and do what we can to help survivors find healing for their souls in Christ.
Our two-day program “Finding Healing from Sexual Assault” isn’t graphic, but it’s probably not suitable for younger children, so please use discretion. As always, you can listen on your local radio station, online, or on our free phone app.
Leila’s book, “Beyond Our Control: Restructuring Your Life After Sexual Assault” and other helpful resources are available in our online bookstore. She is an author, life coach, and a former lay counselor who leads a seminar for survivors of rape and assault.
Kathleen is the director of operations for Embrace Grace, a ministry that provides practical emotional and spiritual help to women who are facing an unplanned pregnancy.
If you’ve been impacted by sexual assault and need help knowing the way forward, please give our counseling team here at Focus on the Family a call at 1-800-A-FAMILY (232-6459). We would be honored to talk with you about some next steps.