It may seem strange starting a brand new blog with a discussion on abuse, but that’s just what I’m about to do. I have enjoyed reading a series of posts by a range of different people in the last week and I think it is worth providing the link to some of these posts in the belief that shared experiences can help us deal with issues.
Here’s an introduction to the series by Rachel Held Evans.
The Scar of Sexual Abuse. Oh how what they did hurt. Stung. Ate at my insides. Burned. Their act emptied me of the little girl I’ve never fully recaptured, a carefree, dancing, joyful, sprite of a girl. My coping mechanism? Disconnecting.
Proper Treatment for Sexual Abuse: 7 Questions to Consider. It takes great courage to tell another person about violations of body and soul. Victims fear not being believed, blamed, or worse, having their secret told to others. Thus, when a person sets aside those fears and speaks of what has been hidden, it is a great honor to be blessed with that story.
God is Love. God is the opposite of abuse, because God is love, and love is the opposite of abuse. Images that twist the meaning of love to paint God as a cruel and hateful abuser do not do God justice.
Don’t Talk About It: Reflections on Spiritual Abuse. Speechlessly I nodded. Joe Smith was telling me that not only was I wrong about what I thought the Bible said, but that I needed to stop fighting the truth that I was not a full, true disciple of Jesus. I needed to let this truth sink deep inside me. I felt myself letting it do so. And as I did, I began to weep uncontrollably.
Out of the Shadows. Bringing abuse into the light – by encouraging and assisting with reporting abuse to appropriate authorities, referring victims and perpetrators for professional help, and facilitating a culture of openness and honesty in the church – is the most effective way to bring healing to all involved.
Abuse and the Church Wrap Up. This is a useful summary of all the posts along with links to a number of good resources on the subject of abuse.
I hope you find these posts helpful.