Unmasking the Domestic Abuser in the Church

Are You Ready?

Exo 12:11 In this manner you shall eat it: with your belt fastened, your sandals on your feet, and your staff in your hand. And you shall eat it in haste. It is the LORD’s Passover.

This world is not a friendly place for Christ’s people. It is enemy territory and it is not our home. We are aliens and strangers in it. The Lord tells us not to expect this world to be our friend and that it will be through many trials and tribulations that we travel through to the kingdom of God.

But we are leaving. We are pulling out. A great exodus is in the making – it is even happening right now, every time someone is brought to faith in Christ, every time a Christian dies and departs this temporal life…every time these things happen, a departure from this world occurs.

The Christian is a person who is marked by the blood of the Lamb. Christ is our Passover, and He is our Moses who is leading us in exodus to Canaan. Because all of this is true, let me ask you…are you ready? Do you love Christ’s appearing? If you know Him, your departure is at hand.

The Lord told the Israelites through Moses, as He instructed them about Passover, to be ready to go. It was time to pull out of this miserable slave prison of Egypt. As they prepared the Passover, they were to be ready to go. Dressed for travel. Belt fastened. Sandals on. Staff in hand. If you were there you could look at them and ask, “Going somewhere?” They were ready.

Are you ready? Are you living your earthly life with traveling clothes on so that any moment when the Lamb arrives you are set to go? This is to be our frame of mind moment by moment. It is our certain hope. We don’t cling to this perishing world. We don’t longingly glance back at Sodom. We are to be ready, every moment.

And people should be able to look at us and listen to us and be led to ask, “Going somewhere?” Yep!


There is Only One Who can Deliver You


Lessons in Faith from Job


  1. Absolutely!!!

  2. KayJay

    This was wonderful to read today, as my dear uncle just passed away to meet the Lord face to face last week. Our family is rejoicing in knowing that he loved Jesus and was awaiting His appearing. Something to look forward to, for sure!

  3. lg

    Thank you for this post and verse. I think about this all the time, but was not familiar with this particular verse, but with other verses – like Lots call to leave Sodom and how David had to run and hid in caves.

    Ever since I was a girl of 12 I have dreamt about having my own home and family and Jeremiah 29:5 is one of my favorite verses – but this has been an elusive goal / dream as I unknowingly looked to achieve this dream through a narcissistic sociopath who made sure I paid a dear price when I chose not to worship him as he wanted and to leave him. I have nothing, certainly not the home I dreamt about since forever.

    And Yet — God has provided a lovely home for me in spire of everything. It is old and run down, and too cold in the winter and too hot in the summer, and I do not own it, so my stay here is temporary as I can not afford to live here after my daughter comes of age. But it is lovely – it is situated on a small cliff so my windows are full of trees and it feels like we live in a nest and there are views of trees at every angle of the house and our backyard is full of trees. And I do no hear traffic even though we live near a high traffic area. He knows how much I love trees in my windows and provided a place with lots of trees in my windows during what has been a most trying time in my life.

    I get overwhelmed and scared about where I will go next when I can’t afford to keep renting this place, but then remember how much God has provided for me all along when I look back and see how merciful He has been.

    I made a very wrong choice in who I married – thinking I was choose sensibly because he had a good job and was well liked by everyone. At the time I had no idea or understanding of what a narcissistic or a sociopath was or what red flags to look for and grew up in a church being fed a lot of lies and twisted thinking about marriage, divorce and forgiveness and how evil it is to be a trophy wife – evil on the part of the person searching for a trophy wife and evil on the part of the wife allowing herself to be used as one.

    Nevertheless I pursued the marriage based on my own goals and sensibilities and the approval of the world. Getting out of the marriage has cost me everything: his manipulations in Family Court has literally bankrupted me, my health, and taken away any opportunity of having a real home. And yet God has provided so abundantly and miraculously for me in the midst of all this.

    It was foolish for Naomi to leave Bethlehem in search of material wealth in a godless place like Moab, and she lost her husband and sons, her financial support, in the process. She took a risk to leave Moab, returned to Bethlehem, held fast to her faith in spite of her dire circumstance, and the story tells us how God provided for her in abundance.

    When I first moved here He led me to Proverbs 30:6 “the rock badgers are a people not mighty, yet they make their homes in the cliffs.”

    They make their home in difficult places. Incredibly, I am also literally situated on a (very) small rocky cliff.

    I have moved around so much during my life due to jobs which I used to search for the perfect home, that I have become a moving professional mover and never feeling I am from a place, but just passing through, while longing so much to feel rooted.

    And now, this time when I have finally been living in one place the longest, it is in a rental home, and comes with the price tag and trauma of never-ending entanglement and exploitations of Family Court, and so that I am still in a place of limbo. It is emotionally exhausting.

    But when this becomes overwhelming, I try to remember Proverbs 30:6’s rock badgers and to shift my understanding of Jeremiah 29:5 as more of a “bloom where you are planted” encouragement.

    Thinking on Exodus 12:11 though adds another level. Thank you for sharing this verse.

    • B

      God bless you, Sister. I love that God gave you trees – how calming and beautiful they are. They give shade and protection to many small creatures, and as the wind blows through their branches we are reminded of the Holy Spirit regreshing our souls. Trees mirror the security of being rooted and grounded in God and His Word. Thank you for your encouraging testimony of God’s faithfulness to you.

    • Susan

      My survival story is similar and it has been a long lasting one since making my own wrong choice of an abusive husband. I endured two decades of manipulative, dismissive abuse followed by nearly 30 years of struggling financially. Your picture of being surrounded by the beautiful trees really spoke to me. There wasn’t much to see looking out of the windows of my home in which I lived for 30 years, very little in deed. But there was one beautiful flower that bloomed faithfully every year that came through a neighbor’s hedge. (It might even have been a weed, I’m not sure.) I could see it through my back patio door, visible from where I chose to sit to eat, do devotions, go over my checking account, etc. Every time I would look up and see it I would thank God for that splash of beauty in an otherwise pretty bleak, impoverished neighborhood. I believe He is present in these small things, building our trust in Him as we see His mercy. And the best part is knowing the suffering is temporary and we joyfully claim, “In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also.”

  4. lg

    I have also loved this verse from Psalm 84 to help put things in perspective when I get overwhelmed with longing for a “real” home:

    “Even the sparrow finds a home, and the swallow builds her nest and raises her young at a place near your altar, O LORD of Heaven’s Armies, my King and my God!” (Psalm 84:3).

    Like the Israelites being set free from bondage in Egypt to freely worship (Exodus 12) and in Hosea 11:11 feeling Assyria’s rule God’s promise and blessing to “settle them in their homes” and “land of milk and honey” is provided in order that His people may freely worship. So thinking about home as a vehicle for spiritually nurturing young hearts, minds, and bodies to offer worship, praise, thanksgiving to our God. When this is our priority for making a home, God will bless it.

    We need to be open to receiving His blessings even if they do not at first appear how we imagine those blessings to be. Time and again, when we trust God and are open to receive the blessings He provides and promises, it will always end up being abundantly overflowing and more than we could have ever imagined or hoped for.

  5. Jill

    Very helpful, Pastor Jeff, thank you.

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