LOOKING TO BE LOVED &
(The Ronald Mullen Story)
By: Ronald Mullen
(Editors Note: Everyone needs to be needed. God placed that inside each one of us. Everyone also needs to be loved. When we are deprived of BOTH of these needs our soul and spirit has an open festering wound that never permanently heals. In our wounded state, we often find ourselves wounding others.
Here is a painful yet glorious story of an individual looking to be loved and needed . . . but searching in all the wrong places. Once he connected with the Great Physician, his healing began.
"And by His stripes we are healed." (Isaiah 53:5, 1 Peter 2:2:24 NKJV)
I was raised in a very strict and rigid environment at home. My mom was neglected by her mom as a child and she was sexually molested by her uncle. My dad was abused really badly too, mostly physically and emotionally. My mother never really worked at all in her life because she had physical problems and she was learning disabled. My dad worked a lot in mills when he was younger, but he had a car accident that disabled him with a hernia, which he never got help for because he was really scared of hospitals for whatever reason.
I have four brothers and four sisters of which all were abused in different ways. My parents would never let me do things around the house when I wanted to do them. I was told that I couldn't do anything right and that I will never amount to anything so I might as well hang it up.
As a child and a teenager my mother would do everything for me. One day she was cleaning my bedroom and I told her that I could do it by myself. She yelled at me, "You don't know how to clean it - so shut up or I will tell your father and he will strap you with the belt!" I remember being so love-starved as a child - nobody in the family would ever give me attention. Even when I grew up and got a place of my own, they never said that they missed me or cared about me when I visited them. I remember a few times when I visited home (mostly to get attention from them); I was expecting them to greet me to tell me that they missed me. They just went about their business ignoring me and not even realizing it.
My dad never let me work around the house either for the same reasons, as my mother wouldn't. I remember one day dad forced me to sit and watch while he let my nephew mow the lawn while I watched. There was really no way of being myself at home - it was really abusive. I remember one instance when I was much younger, my father coming home drunk and burning my older brother on his arm with a cigarette. When he showed mother, she denied it and told him not to tell anybody.
I also remember waking up to screams of my father beating my brother. I can't explain the fear that I was feeling toward my father that night. The next day my brother had welts all over his body, and when he showed my mother, she denied the abuse again. I remember my father giving me the belt. Another brother of mine had a sexual relationship with my sister, both at about 25 years old.
Also, at a younger age my older brother was hit in the head with a stick of wood that was for the wood stove. My father neglected all of us a lot. He never took us anywhere at all. He used to do a lot for his girlfriend and her kids, but he seemed not to want to have anything to do with any of us. It was really weird and we never understood it until today. I remember as a child hoping and wishing that my father would change, but it never happened. He believed in God and he said that when he was younger he was saved but he backslid.
My father lived with my mother all of his life while he was seeing another woman. My mother knew about it but she lived in denial of it, and this was when she was a Christian. There was another time when my father was angry with one of my brothers and he threw an ax at him. Luckily for my brother, it missed him. Mom and dad played favorites with all of my brothers and sisters and later on it caused a lot of division in the family.
When we were younger we attended a very legalistic church. It was so confusing at times. We were told to go out and witness to other people, but we were also told that everything we do we needed the pastor's permission. We couldn't visit another church of the same denomination without the pastor having to go there and visit the church to be sure that they agreed in their doctrine with us. We couldn't really do anything without having to tell the pastors about it.
There was a time in the church when the Lord spoke to my spirit to pray for someone at the altar and when I did, I was told to go back and sit down in my pew because I wasn't in the spirit. It really confused me a lot. We weren't allowed to make judgments and decisions on our own, but they made them for us. There was no room for individuality. We had to go by a lot of their rules and regulations and whoever did the most for the church was favored over others who tried a lot a lot to do what was expected of them. The Bible clearly says those who depend on the law by obeying it are under God's curse (Galatians 3:10), and only who depends on God by faith shall live (Galatians 3:11), and God has no favorites.
After leaving this church I backslid. I returned to drugs, stealing, drinking, and also with the law by breaking my ex-girlfriend's door down because she was cheating on me with two other guys. Before that happened I remember us fighting because she wanted to hang around men all of the time; she didn't want to hang around women. She also threw hot coffee in my face other times. She had clawed my chest with her fingernails, punched me in the mouth and spit at me calling me every name in the book. All of the times she did things to me, I had not done nothing to her at all. But there were several things coming toward the end of our relationship that I did do because I had taken enough from her. I couldn't understand it at the time, but now I do. Her mother had abandoned her when she was younger.
One night while we were in bed I tried to strangle her because she was accusing me of something I didn't do. Another time I stole money from her because I caught her stealing it from me. I stole other things from her too - her clothes, telephone, a ring she aadmired; I threw it all in a river that was near to my home.
I couldn't keep jobs for very long because of stealing and going on drinking binges for days and even weeks. There was another relationship that I had with a lady and she was my second cousin - we were both at around 30 when the relationship started. It lasted for about two years and we both fell in love with each other, and we were engaged to be married. We both became members of a local Mormon Church and we were baptized there. We became members of the Mormon Church because our families and their church didn't agree with our relationship with each other.
This relationship was much different than the other; it seemed to work out for awhile until she started seeing a counselor for being molested as a child. After she started getting help she started sounding more aggressive to me and accusing me of doing things that I wasn't doing. But after two years I ended it because of the problems she had which were too difficult for me at the time and because our families and their church didn't agree with it.
After that relationship with her, I discovered how much I had loved her and missed her; I tried committing suicide by cutting my wrist with a pair of scissors. There was another time that I tried committing suicide by overdosing on sleeping pills because I just couldn't seem to find any purpose in my life.
There was one afternoon when my brother stopped over to visit me and to tell me how he had given his life to Christ and how different he felt. Him said he felt more love towards people and that he had become more secure in his marriage. He said that his life was so much more peaceful since he had given it over to Christ. His face shined as he was explaining his conversion to me. He seemed totally different than before. I remember him saying that Christ was the only answer in my life and that I needed to turn to Him to findpeace. Consequently, I decided to go to church with him the following Sunday, and when I did, I gave my life back to Christ.
I found out that my brother was right - my life was completely changed. God lifted all of my burdens away and I felt like He did secure a happier and deeper love in me for others. Since then the Lord has led me to a church that He is using me a lot in, in many different ministries. I'm growing more and more in Him everyday and so is my love for Him.
He is using me there in my church for ushering, and counting the money and checks in the pastor's office. I have also helped out with a vacation Bible school and playing a character in a play for the children downstairs. I've led one of the Sunday night worship services and I also write to prisoners through their mail call program. God has also given me a ministry of buying gospel tracts and tract racks to put them in stores, restaurants, etc. I also pass them out on the streets when I go out to win people for Christ. He's still doing much in my life today because of this step I made years ago to turn my life over to Him and to submit to His will for my life.
(Editor's Note) This testimony essentially is one that is representative of millions of others. Names are different, but the story line remains the same. Raised in an abusive environment by an emotionally wounded father and mother -- yet being ill-equipped because of their own pain from childhood on -- Ron entered into adulthood wounded himself. If we read the script once, we'll hear it repeated a gazillion times over: 'I was looking for love and acceptance in all the wrong places.'
As you sit here reading this, someone on this planet is thinking about committing suicide. Life is too painful to want to keep going on. Some will cry out to God for help. Others won't bother, either because they don't believe He really cares, or they fear that they will only get involved in more spiritually abusive situations.
Yet Ron found something in life to live for. Ron found that he could give his pain and burdens to God, and trust Him to work things out, if he would only be patient with God.
Ron also took the advice of his brother and tried a PERSONAL RELATIONSHIP with Jesus Christ, something he had never pursued before.
Friend - a personal relationship with Jesus Christ NEVER fails, if entered into properly. Entering into that relationship PROPERLY is the key to seeing it work. Here are a few tips to tuck away to have a PROPER and LASTING personal relationship with Jesus Christ:
1) Fall in love with a PERSON, not a church or a belief system. Fall in love with the One who created you. Holy Scripture says Jesus Christ was the one who created you (Colossians 1:15-16). I repeat: fall in love with the HEAD of the Church - not the church.
2) Read and reread your lover's love letters. If the Creator of the universe has written the most important things about Himself in His love letters, wouldn't it be wise to learn what they are? Old Testament love-letters show a side of the Creator that many people fear. New Testament love-letters show a side of the Creator that is INCREDIBLY attractive.
3) Do NOT enter into a personal relationship with Jesus Christ solely to see what YOU can get out of it. Your relationship will die - guaranteed. True love desires to do only one thing: make the person you're in love with feel like they are the most important person in all the world. Jesus likes to be made to feel that way. Believe it or not, He's a very jealous Creator and lover. To get His favor, you can't give Him just a part of yourself. He wants ALL of you, or none of you. There is no in-between with Him.
4) Stay away from people and churches that have spiritually perverted relationships with Jesus Christ. Spiritual pride - "we're the ONLY church anyone needs to attend or be a member of." Or, "This is the church where God shows up the MOST," or leaders who control, manipulate, or show favoritism. Associating with people like this for very long will suck your treasured love-relationship with Jesus Christ down the sewer pipe that is connected to hell itself.
5) DO find a local church or group of Christians to associate with who KNOWS the difference between Law and Grace, and PROVE it in their actions by LIVING OUT Grace. (We encourage people who do not fully understand what is being said here to read: Exposing The Legalism Monster.
6) Ask and trust Jesus Christ to show you everything you need to understand about Satan and his demon helpers. Satan's FAVORITE day is Sunday, and he's ALWAYS the first person to walk through the church door. That's where we would LEAST EXPECT him to be, which is WHY you need to have Jesus show you how devious he can be.
You see, Satan is a jealous lover as well. He ONCE was your lover of sorts, perverted as it was, until you "divorced" him, and married Jesus Christ. Satan is now the most "bitter divorcee" this earth has. He will execute his vengeance toward you every chance he gets, and he's got creative and ruthless ways of doing so, ways that you've never believed were possible. Satan IS looking for someone to devour (1 Peter 5:8), and his greatest devouring is launched against lovers (knowing and unknowingly ones) he once owned.
A Christian is never to fear Satan, but to think that you have been freed from his attacks is a lethal misunderstanding of spiritual reality. Christ has given His followers weaponry to fight the attacks of Satan, which are summarized in Ephesians 6:10-18.
To read more on this subject, please click on this link: EXPOSING THE LEGALISM MONSTER.
7) Be romantic with Jesus. Give Him your heart first thing in the morning, and the last thing you do before falling to sleep at night. Teach your mouth to be romantic. Tell your mind and mouth to say these words before ANYTHING else when you wake up in the morning: "Jesus - I love you."
Before falling to sleep at night, let them be the last words that come out of your mouth and mind: "Jesus - I love
A love-relationship with Jesus Christ will NEVER fail, if you and I REFUSE to let it fail. No marriage is easy. Every marriage has its struggles. Our "marriage" with Jesus will have times of difficulty while we walk on this earth, you can be sure. But when two people REFUSE to accept "divorce" as an option, and will humble themselves before the Creator of the universe for help to get it back on track again . . . rather than RUN from the pain of working through it until victory comes . . . that love-relationship with be deeper and richer and more appreciated than BEFORE.
There will be times when I feel like my "spouse" has let me down. I may "feel" unimportant and unneeded. I may even feel expected to do things against my will. There will be times when I don't feel like talking all that much to my "spouse" (praying), or reading "love-letters" (Bible meditation), or worshiping with others (church/Bible study attendance/prayer meetings), or telling others about how they can have a personal love-relationship with the Creator too.
Yet what WAS my purpose for marrying this "person" in the first place? If it was to have a FRIEND that would stick with me through thick or thin . . . then I will do everything within my power not to let anything put a stop to that friendship. If it was for OTHER reasons . . . I am not operating in wisdom.
Doing perpetual "house work" for Jesus WITHOUT taking daily time out just to be intimate with Him can become deadly. Ministers can get so burdened down with doing "spiritual house-work" that times of just sitting down with their "spouse" and being intimate is the most needed special ingredient in being able to continue to do "spiritual house-work" in the years ahead.
Yes - Jesus Christ longs to save each of us from ending up in hell upon dying. That alone is good enough reason to become intimate with Him! Yes, we all need to feel needed as well. Yet He desires more that you and I be intimate with Him for just THOSE reasons. He desires for us to learn about Him as those in Heaven are learning about Him. He wants us to learn that He is the BEST friend in all Creation to have. Building an intimate friendship with HIM is the goal at all costs.
Precious one . . . if Jesus Christ is not your closest, most intimate friend, be honest with yourself and ask yourself WHY? Have the courage and take the time to write down your reasons on a piece of paper. If you'll take the time to do so, you may never be the same. Writing your "cares" on paper is a HUGE step toward casting your cares on Him.
"Cast your cares upon Him, because He cares for YOU." (1 Peter 5:7)
IN SUMMARY: Fall in love with the BEST God has. Satan has provided many substitutes that one can be devoted to, for the explicit purpose of keeping us from falling in love with the very BEST. Who is the BEST? He's the King of kings, and the Lord of Lords. He is the LORD Jesus Christ. The one who even created Satan, no less.
"He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created THROUGH Him and FOR Him [capitalization emphasis ours]. And He is before all things, and in Him all things consist. And He is the head of the body, the church, who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in all things He may have the preeminence.
For it pleased the Father that in Him [Jesus Christ] all the fullness should dwell, and by Him to reconcile all things to Himself, by Him, whether things on earth or things in heaven, having made peace through the blood of His cross." (Colossians 1:15-20)
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