Finding God on a Bridge: An Adult Survivor of CSA on Overcoming Depression The "I Am" Series 1.1
So many of us experience traumas and tragedies that have the potential to paralyze us for life. Whether it is in the form of heartbreak, abuse, job loss, bankruptcy or disappointment, one tragedy has the potential to hinder a life from ever fully blooming. This was the situation that Evelyn Walters found herself in when she was sexually abused by a family member at the age of 5. Liberation from the power of depression that comes from childhood abuse is a tumultuous battle. Not only does Evelyn’s story exemplify the transformative power of God, but it also demonstrates that sometimes an encounter with God can happen in the most unexpected places.
Evelyn's Story in Her Own Words
“I grew up with a lot of confusion trusting family members because in my mind as a child I would think: ‘These are people that God has sent to love and care for and nurture me.’ But it was a tug of war. See, I loved my family member, but not what he did to me.
I didn’t have any outlets of support growing up. I was holding things in because of how it happened at such a young age. How do you know at 5 years old who to go to and tell what is happening to you? You’re still a child. You’re still learning. You’re still growing.
In my early 30s, I went into depression. Memories started coming back. I didn't know how to deal with the emotions, the flashbacks etc. What was happening to me was so overwhelming and I used smoking cigarettes as a way to cope. They were the only thing that could calm me. I was a Christian, in ministry, filled with the Holy Ghost, and I was still smoking cigarettes, and I was going through depression.
I remember one day I was smoking and I felt God saying to me, “This is only for a season.”
God used my older sister to help me through that season of my life. One song that God used to also really help me was Donnie McClurkin’s “After You’ve Done All You Can, Just Stand.” God used that song to save me from falling into a deeper depression.
When I told my mom that I wanted to press charges, I received a negative response. The thinking goes: “You want to put my family member in jail? You want to go to court?” I understood where she was coming from but it was a one-sided view. One day I opened my Bible to a verse that said “justice shall be served” and it encouraged me to go through with it.
I went to court, and I felt that God told me that it was part of my healing process. Whether he went to jail or not. The judge believed me and so did the police officers. They said, “We believe your story is true”; but because of the time that passed and the evidence, he couldn’t be charged.
God led me to leave the courtroom and go to the bridge by Rideau. I believe God spoke to me and said, ‘I want you to walk over this bridge. Just like you are crossing this bridge and not looking back, so it is with this situation. Don’t look back.’ I always get emotional when I tell this story. The tears just keep flowing. All the emotions and all the pain that I was carrying for all of those years just lifted off of me.
People have spoken encouraging words to me, but I honestly received my healing by the miraculous power of God. I can’t take Him out of the equation. I can’t take the credit.”
Evelyn went on to publish a book about her story in 2019 titled “Wounded Soul Rejoice”. Find out more about her story and purchase your copy today here: https://amzn.to/34cA64U.
Now that you have read Evelyn’s story, you have the chance to act within your own life.
For some of us, we may encounter God on a bridge, in our cars, bedrooms, a church building etc. Encounters are not limited to locations. You can experience healing at any point within your life.
When you speak, you alter reality by the power of your confession. Speak aloud “I am liberated today” from everything that works to hinder your life in this season. Speak until what you are saying becomes a renewed mindset. Speak until what you confess sets in. If Evelyn can find God on a bridge, surely He can meet you where you are today. Call on Him.
More about Evelyn:
Evelyn Walters was born in Kingston, Jamaica and raised in the beautiful country of Canada. Her story is one of hope, healing and restoration after years of sexual abuse as a child. Today, Evelyn is the proud mother of two amazing sons and three precious grandbaby girls. Her relationship with her Lord and Savior is what has kept her through life until now. Evelyn hopes to encourage and inspire those who have been through personal traumas of their own – whether in childhood or later in life – to help them get to a place where their wounded souls can rejoice again.