Unmasking the Domestic Abuser in the Church

A False "Happy" is an Environment in which Abuse Hides

“Where does this happy feeling come from? JESUS!

Where does this happy feeling come from? JESUS!

This happy feeling comes from Jesus! Everyday He more than pleases!

That’s where this happy feeling comes from.”

Luke 22:42-44 saying, “Father, if you are willing, remove this cup from me. Nevertheless, not my will, but yours, be done.” And there appeared to him an angel from heaven, strengthening him. And being in an agony he prayed more earnestly; and his sweat became like great drops of blood falling down to the ground.

A false happy is typically taught in our churches, beginning with classes for the very youngest ages. This theology is often most evident in songs we learned in our Sunday School classes, VBS programs, and even in numbers of choruses used in worship. “I am a Christian. I have the joy, joy, joy, joy, down in my heart. A Christian is the happiest person on earth.” The thing flies with very young children, but as we grow older???

I suggest that false happy is false. That it is not a biblical, true representation of what it means to follow Jesus. And worse, it sets us up for denial of the reality of evil and thus makes the attacks of the wicked upon us even easier to launch. See it? If we have been taught in church from the youngest age that people who know Jesus are happy people, then are we not going to go into “stuff it” mode when evil touches us? “I won’t think about that. I am supposed to be happy. It’s just me.”

That is to say, when the false happy begins to break down, who ya gonna blame? Yourself! Not the wicked one who is causing the pain, trauma and grief, but YOU are the problem. I mean, there must be something wrong with you because everyone else seems to be saying that Jesus gives us happy feelings and everyday He more than pleases those who know Him.
Some of those songs may be catchy. You may have sentimental attachment to them. But they are just wrong. They cause real harm. They need to be round-filed.


New Post Coming Up Today at 6AM PST – I deleted the Jer 5 post which I accidentally published.


A Suggestion About Why the Lord Waits to Bring Justice


  1. Mjoy

    As soon as I read your post title I thought you were initially saying they when you are abused the abused person still can find the “happy” in themselves because of Jesus being with them. Even though they are in turmoil the lord is with them to help them through when they should be suicidal or so miserable they are in deep depression.
    I have found that every section of my life has been filled with abuse in one form or another. The devil for some reason has opened doors that I thought was God but later realized that I should’ve ran….and far, far away instead of taking the road that seemed easier because I felt that God had made a way.
    My point is that throughout my life I have found a “happy” that I have felt when I should be devastated. Maybe that was the Lord’s way of keeping me safe? I’m not sure why abuse has been a constant in my life….but there can be a “happy” from the Lord to see you through those times in your life. Maybe because of that happy that God helps me to find is the reason I’m still here.

    • R

      It sounds like what you have is “true happy,” not the “false happy” that’s being described above. You have the assurance that Jesus loves you even when your circumstances are awful. That’s a mature, solid faith.

  2. Deb R

    Have you seen this? At least two ladies have gone public on FB with their stories. Sadly familiar.


  3. Lynn

    Yet again, in today’s church, we lack the understanding of the meaning of joy. Much like many professing Christians who misunderstand the word bless (it means to confer what is beneficial in the gospels not asking God to give good things to those who are harming us) the word joy suffers from a similar issue.

    Joy, in the gospels, doesn’t mean a feeling that we have. Joy in the greek – https://biblehub.com/greek/5479.htm – means the awareness of God’s grace and favor in your life. It is grace recognized, not just a positive, happy feeling. Can joy be expressed as feelings? Yes. Is it only a feeling? No.

    When we misunderstand what joy is, we open ourselves up to thinking we don’t have it, when we do. As Christians, we are filled with joy. Meaning, we are fillled with the awareness of God’s grace and favor in our lives as a result of his gift of Christ to pay the debt we could not pay. That doesn’t mean we won’t experience other emotions in our walk with God. The Holy Spirit is our source of joy with who we get the privilege of communing with every second of our lives as Christians. He brings the awareness of our God-given grace and favor to us to strengthen us as we persevere in a world gone mad which becomes our strength.

    With God all things are possible. So if you have lamented thinking that you don’t feel enough joy each and every day of your Christian walk, that’s okay. There is a time and season to everything. Sometimes we need to lament, scream, and cry out all of the emotions that are a result of living in a sin-filled world.

    You are not letting God down if you aren’t joy-filled all the time. Weep when it’s time to weep. Laugh when it’s time to laugh. Dance when it’s time to dance. Recognize that there is a time and season for everything under heaven – including experiencing feelings of love, joy, peace, hate, anger, and all the other emotions God’s granted to us as humans.

  4. Sarah

    “…when the false happy begins to break down, who ya gonna blame? Yourself!”

    ..which results in a false sense of responsibility for the abuse by the target . The perpetrator is fully responsible for their crimes, never the target.

    Seems this grooming of targets starts early.

  5. Lynn

    For some of us the grooming started at birth.

    My narcissistic mom used to shame me for not being happier and more outgoing like other kids while facing constant verbal abuse from her and emotional abandonment by my father. How can a child be happy when they feel like they are too much and not enough all at the same time? They can’t. They form negative behavioral patterns in order to cope with the abuse and put on a mask so that the deep wounds aren’t evident to others which take years to unravel and recover from.

  6. Amy

    Perfect example of “ Toxic Positivity “

    It’s mean. It certainly has helped in keeping many in abusive relationships including me.

    Thank you.

  7. Innoscent

    “And the LORD said unto him, Go through the midst of the city, through the midst of Jerusalem, and set a mark upon the foreheads of the men that sigh and that cry for all the abominations that be done in the midst thereof.” Ezekiel 9:4

    “And when he had opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of them that were slain for the word of God, and for the testimony which they held: And they cried with a loud voice, saying, How long, O Lord, holy and true, dost thou not judge and avenge our blood on them that dwell on the earth?” Revelation 9:9-10

    How come these believers are not “happy”…

  8. Kate

    It’s another form of control. (As is EVERYTHING from an abuser. They put evil for good.)

    So, if you’re not happy, YOU are lacking in some way. Sinning against God, not serving your husband and family enough, not GIVING more….. blah, blah, blah.

    I’m often amazed that ANY of us escape the absolute mind control tactics of MOST churches, and find ourselves here. We are the smallest minority but truest (real) Christians. Through the constant bombardment of manipulations like these, we should have never escaped.

    Jesus loves us enough to show us the truth of this evil.

    Thanks again Pastor Crippen. You are rare.

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