Throughout my life I have dealt with so many bullies I have lost count. They came in the form of cruel children on the playground when an awkward, shy, different little girl stood on the sidelines wishing for a friend. They came in the form of abusive people who hit, pushed, kicked and punched me, held me down and immobilized me. They came in the form of people who told me I would never be anything, that I was nothing, that I was worthless, less than human, stupid, ugly, of no value in this world. They came in the form of people who yelled at me, feared me because I was different and said I could not do my job because of my disability.
Some of these bullies I knew, some I did not. Some I went to school with, lived next door to, worked with and was even married to. Some hosted birthday parties to which my mother made me go and some were friends to me when they needed my brain, my intelligence, one of my skill sets.
None were my friends; none loved me.
Even this year I have encountered bullies. The cruelty, the horrible words, the gestures intended to intimidate, the yelling, the insane (and highly inaccurate) claims, all echo through these halls.
They feared me. They did not understand me and what people do not understand they often fear. Ignorance was the driving force in my latest encounter with a bully, ignorance and something far darker than simple anger. But that is their own issue to work out.
They treat me like I am stupid, dumb, retarded. That’s OK. I don’t mind. In actuality, it gives me an advantage. I have a genius level IQ (somewhere in the top 5-10 percent of the population) and the only people who need to know are the ones I feel it necessary to tell. There is far more going on in my mind than anyone knows. Suffice it to say, I am NOT stupid or retarded (which I have been called) or mentally incompetent – far from it. I may be different, eccentric even, but isn’t that often a mark of genius?
No, those bullies will never know, not from this post at least. See, they are too arrogant to read my writing. Their eyes will never see these words, I am fairly certain of this.
I pray for them, those who bully me, abuse me, try to hurt me and who have tried to hurt me. They have no idea who or what they are dealing with. They do not know what they are doing.
See, God is on my side.
My God is greater than any bully that the devil can send my way. I don’t care what (perceived) position of authority they may feel they hold in this world. My God is greater, stronger, mightier and no weapon formed against me will prosper.
They simply cannot win.
I don’t fight back usually. Often I close my mouth, move away, don’t look at them while they attack. I am no longer in the physically threatening situations that once pervaded my life – except for one instance not long ago. She never touched me, but did get very close to me while yelling at me. I don’t know what she said, it was all a jumble. I just sat there.
That response does not make me weak or complacent. I simply do not see the value in escalating a situation that has already spiraled out of control.
I allow God to direct my actions and my reactions. When that still, small voice say “be still,” I obey.
Things work much better for me when I am obedient to God’s commands. It took a great deal of work to overcome the fear and anger that trigger a retaliatory response. But by submitting to God’s will, being gentle and calm, I am far better off.
So in that recent case, I sat, no reaction – like so many other times, with so many other bullies. Then I prayed for her, prayed that God would have mercy on her because she does not know what she is doing. She doesn’t realize who she is attacking and what the consequences are when you bring harm to God’s people.
Then I sat back and let God handle it. I put my bully in God’s hands, my situation I gave to Him.
And things are so much better. I know I will be just fine.