Evangelist Joyce Meyer‘s powerful testimony of forgiveness is reaching thousands of people around the world.
Forgiveness has been a hard lesson for Meyer to learn. It is one based on years of sexual abuse at the hands of her alcoholic father.
“My father did rape me, numerous times, at least 200 times,” she said during an interview. “There was no place I ever felt safe growing up.”
“Literally, what he did was rape me, every week, at least once a week, until the time I was 18. My father, who I was supposed to be able to trust, who was supposed to keep me safe, raped me a minimum of 200 times,” she said.
While her childhood left her traumatized, Meyer has found restoration through her relationship with Jesus. She has a global ministry and most of all, a loving husband and children. She also says she has forgiven her father for what he did to her.
But as she explains in a video posted to her Facebook page Monday, there were times when she wondered where God was in the midst of her abuse.
“Where was God in all this? Let’s talk about that for a minute,” Meyer tells the audience.
“I can’t explain it to you in my mind…I know that God didn’t get me out of it, but he did give me the strength to go through it. God had a plan,” she said.
“About three years ago, I said that, ‘But of course I wish I had not been abused’ and God stopped me. He said, ‘Stop saying that.’ And then I thought about it and I thought, and I know this sounds crazy, but I’m glad it happened. You know why? Because I’m a better person now than I ever would have been,” Meyer tearfully explained. “I don’t know how to make any sense out of that, but I know that I know that I know that God has redeemed me and he has taken what Satan meant for harm and worked it out for good.”
Many audience members were visibly moved and crying along with Meyer.
“I’m stronger. I know God better. I understand people’s pain. And I believe it’s made me able to reach out to you in your pain and your need and to tell you will all passion, God is alive,” she said while pointing to her audience.
Meyer also tells the crowd that she is living proof that recovery is possible.
“Can you recover? You’re looking at somebody who did. Amen? You’re looking at the evidence that you can recover,” she said. “There’s no pit so deep that He can’t reach down and lift you out of. He will set your feet on a rock. He will give you a wonderful life. He will give you beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness. He will make you a tree of righteousness, the planting of the Lord that He may be glorified.”
So far, the message has been viewed more than 260,000 times on Facebook.