My name is Maureen Alikor Oluwatobi, and what you are able to read are my personal convictions based on study, research, personal experiences and revelation.
You are human and you have every right to disagree, but I will employ you to read till the end.
I will start off by making a statement I’ve been making for sometime now.
Rape is Spiritual, or better put, rape has a spiritual implication and our understanding of this will further help us in our advocacy and activism against rape and every form of sexual related offences.
When you have an enemy or obstacle before you, the truth is, you stand a better chance of winning the battle or over powering the obstacle when you have an understanding of what you are up against or who you are fighting.
This is a common practice, and we apply it in our everyday life.
Sometime around July 2016, I received the go ahead to kick start an advocacy initiative for victims of sexual abuse using my experience.
Yes, I had healed, but many others didn’t have access to the materials and truths that helped my healing journey. I saw an opportunity to help them transition from the pain to healing and total recovery using the methods, materials and truths that helped me.
Interestingly, it seemed as though life wanted to test my resolve and conviction or even shut down my resolve and conviction by the experiences that followed.
In November 2016, I got raped by armed robbers who broke into my apartment.
It was both a traumatic and an instructive experience for me. Looking at it, it seems life had given me an opportunity to test-drive the methods, materials and truths on myself once again as a fresh rape victim.
Let me use this analogy.
If you wish to cook a pot of Afang soup, once you have the complete ingredients, there is really nothing stopping you from cooking, except you choose to delay.
So, with the ingredients I had, I began to cook. I began to apply the methods, materials and truths to my life, truthfully and without mincing words, they yielded results as quickly as I desired.
THE RAPE AGENDA
The rape experience spurred me deeper into studying and researching the origin and the implications of rape on victims, and how these practices can be applied to facilitate healing and recovery.
Here’s what I’ve learnt.
In the last four years I’ve been in active advocacy, working with organizations, talking and listening to rape victims, studying the impact and implication of rape on victims, praying, listening and growing in my relationship with God, two truths have been revealed to me:
1. RAPE IS SPIRITUAL: To start with, life is spiritual, and although we are having physical experiences, our actions are backed up with spiritual principles and as such have spiritual implications.
Sex is not a purely a physical exercise as we may have been made to believe, it has its own spiritual implications when done right and even when it has been perverted. Rape is one of the perversions of sex.
2. RAPE IS A TOOL: A tool is a device used to carry out particular functions or agenda. Rape may seem basic to the average mind, but intrinsically, a greater number of us agree it is an evil and a wicked act, one that must be punished.
We are also aware to the varying impact and after-effects of rape on victims, sadly, these after-effects are results of strategies from a well executed covert operation intended to conceal its real and original game plan or agenda. There are at least 3 agendas.
THE 3-POINT AGENDA
At this point, you should know I am a Christ Follower, a citizen of the Kingdom of God, and my life is centered around my relationship with God.
As a result of these, the perspective through which I interpret things and experiences are purely biblical, the issue of rape is not an exception.
I draw the 3-point agenda from the book of John chapter 10 vs 10, it reads:
“The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.“
1. STEAL: Rape is geared towards deforming, distorting and mutilating the God-identity of victims. To ascertain this, research the psychological, physical, emotional and I dare add the Spiritual effects of rape on victims, it may give you a clue, as to how many of them struggle with their identities
2. KILL: Rape has a tendency to shortchange or sidetrack victims from fulfilling their God-ordained destinies. Living a purposeful life is a side effect of having a wholesome and healthy sense of self, and the enemy will do anything to blind humans from seeing themselves as God made and sees them.
3. DESTROY: Rape ultimately seeks to destroy two things:
A) Destroy God’s claim of being a good Father as recorded in Scripture. This is shown in statement like “If God is good, why did he let me get raped”
B) Destroy God’s claim of being a good Father who gives good gifts to his children. Sex is one of the good gifts given to us by God.
You’d often hear victims and others say, “If God gives good gifts, why didn’t He create a system to shield the good gifts from being abused or perverted?
“There are many more statements.
Remember, I said, rape is one strategy in the enemy’s covert operation.
The solution to the enemy’s strategy is found in the B part of the same verse where we were told of his tactics John 10:10b: “…I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.
“Aware of the enemy’s tactics, I am more aware that the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty through God…(2 Corinthians 10:3-5)
In our advocacy and activism, it is important that we back up our methods, materials, exercises and therapy with Spiritual principles and exercises like:
Growing in the knowledge of God.
Self rediscovery according to God’s blueprint
Leveraging the power of words (Confessions and Affirmations)
Leveraging relationships and community
Counselling and therapy are powerful, but what is often broken in humans can often be fixed TOTALLY by the same essence that made and created them: GOD.
He is the One who said “But the very hairs of your head are all numbered” – Matthew 10:30, Luke 12:7
I salute and respect the organizations, NGOs and individuals that have been at the forefront of anti-rape and gender based violence advocacy.
Given the times we live in, and the sensitivity of the rape endemic, it’s important that we apply and employ these spiritual principles alongside the strategies and methods that have already been put in place to help rape victims, if we hope to achieve lasting impact.
This is what I do and hope to expand through my advocacy initiative, Demystify Abuse Campaign.
Like Pastor Martyn Edosomwan will say, “Christianity is a miracle way of life. Without the miracles (God confirming the words we speak with signs following), Christianity is just like every other philosophy of man that can only go so far to help mankind.”
I believe a rape-free world is possible, because rape didn’t exist in the original blueprint of God’s plan for humanity.
Maureen Alikor Oluwatobi,
Survivor and Convener, Demystify Abuse Campaign-