A woman noticed my nametag as we stood in line. "Did you write that book in the bookstore?" she asked. When I told her I had, she shared her own story of domestic abuse, then she wanted to know mine. I fumbled for an answer. In the year since the book was published, she was … Continue reading Why I Wrote “Sanctuary….”
Lately I have been overwhelmed by the wickedness of man. When someone experiences unspeakable evil it attacks both the mind--that's trauma, it's real--and the heart. Hopelessness. Emptiness. Loss. We want it to go away; to cease and desist. Pat answers and platitudes do nothing less than throw oil on the fire. Instead, it's time to … Continue reading The Value of Evil
Much like a mirror, we view life through our eyes--looking out from the inside. Even when we think we're looking in, we're looking at ourselves through ourselves. For that reason, none of us is objective. That's why the Word of God and the people of God are vital. An abuser sees the victim as an … Continue reading Mirror, Mirror on the Wall
Proverbs 18:17 says, "The first to plead his case seems right, Until another comes and examines him." Those who help individuals settle disputes and live at peace depend on this principle. In most people situations, this works. But a proverb is a proverb, not a promise--it's true most of the time, given the right circumstances. This … Continue reading Two Sides to Every Story
Nature reflects God's eternal nature and glory--none of us would deny it. And just as the moon reflects the light of the sun, we are created to reflect the light of God. Unfortunately, many of us think we're stars. Abusive individuals are like that. In longing for adoration and approval from some, they put selfish, … Continue reading Moon and Sun
"It can't be!" "It's not possible." These are natural responses when a victim discloses the truth, especially to mutual friends and family members. We want to think people know better, that the abuser has a conscience, that no one would knowingly treat a loved one with cruelty and contempt. That's simply not true. The noetic effect … Continue reading The Conscience and Domestic Abuse
One biblical reason women fail to cry out--and churches fail to help--is a misunderstanding of the word, "everything" in Ephesians 5:24. "But as the church is subject to Christ, so also the wives ought to be to their husbands in everything." Watch this video to understand the context and heart of God behind this controversial … Continue reading Submit in Everything?
Anger is a charged, dangerous word. Anger brings pain, sorrow, anguish, conflict, shame, guilt. It is an abuser's weapon of choice, his way to hammer home expected behavior when coercion doesn't work. Anger is inherently out of control, unpredictable, unstoppable. Anger is also a proper response to injustice. Anger is the needle on our moral … Continue reading Anger
Abuse brings its own sense of grief and loss as a result of repeatedly dashed expectations, pain, betrayal, and manipulation ("How did that happen...again?!). Accepting the truth of one's abuse results in a whole different type of loss. To come to the realization that the person who says, "I love you,"--who excuses behavior because of … Continue reading Loss
Unfortunately, many of us make decisions based on short, biblical phrases without realizing we've missed something. We think of and apply them sinfully--because, well, that's how we roll. Here is an example that relates to domestic abuse: "God hates divorce" (Malachi 2:16). We've all heard it. This specific phrase drives many to worship marriage over … Continue reading Marriage: A Hill Worth Dying On?