I recently spoke with the father of an abuse victim. I won’t go into details in order to maintain her anonymity, but she is still married to a very wicked abuser who is trying to take her children from her. A custody hearing is coming up soon.
J has had her oppression added to at the hands of a very well known pastor’s “counseling” and at the hands of that pastor’s church elders. You know the same old scenario – she is put out of the church while the abuser remains in good standing.
Abuse victims with children are in such a hard place, aren’t they? Dragged through the courts. Falsely accused. In constant fear that her children will be taken from her. Spurned by people who once claimed to be her friends. Her health starts to suffer from constant stress. It is remarkable to me that these women hold up at all under such hard circumstances.
This case also underscored something for me that I have seen (and no doubt most of you as well) repeatedly. Namely, that when a person experiences abuse first hand, when this evil touches THEM and things get “real,” suddenly their once comfortable view of many things comes unraveled and must be re-examined. The father of this victim told me “I used to believe like many pastors and Christians that no one should ever divorce. But this terrible experience, seeing the once joyful countenance of my little girl disappear, has forced me to change my thinking.” Yes, our thinking changes and our eyes are forced to take another look at Scripture. We are impelled to re-consider our understanding of:
- The gospel itself
- Who a Christian actually is, what he or she looks like, what Christ really does in us when He saves us
- What it means that the Lord desires mercy and not sacrifice
- Marriage, divorce, and remarriage
- What the real church looks like and what it does not look like
- Forgiveness, repentance
- The nature and tactics of evil
As I have often said to people – study the nature and tactics of the domestic abuser who is hiding behind a “christian” disguise, and you will be forced to put the truth of your theology to the test.
So let’s all please pray for J. I will give updates as I hear them. Her suffering and the suffering of her mom and dad and brothers and sisters is very great. This is going to truly require a miraculous work of the Lord for her to get free.