Monday, October 29, 2012

Pastor or Politician? Strange reviews of Rachel Held Evan's New Book

2 comments Posted by Hannah at 3:57 PM

long island medium
You can’t have faith and fear, because they don’t go together!  You have to release the fear and embrace the faith! – Long Island Medium
As you can tell at times I like to watch some ‘fluff’ shows.  It helps me relax, and YES giggle at times.  I was flipping around on the television, and caught a small segment of this show.  She was speaking to a young girl who had lost her grandmother, and the grandchild was falling deeper into the pit of depression to the point of attempted suicide.

Anyway, this child was told to go back to her faith.  She couldn’t live with fear and faith at the same time.  The fear was overwhelming her life, and was taking up to much space in her head and in her heart.  She needed to embrace some changes so she could live the life that her grandmother wanted for her.  She told her to go back to her faith, because during this period of her she had left that behind. 

I think we all realize there is so much MORE work to do with this child besides the simplistic advice she was given.  Its good advice, but she may need counseling, etc. as well.  I remember a time when most people just realized this, and it didn’t need to be discussed.  You didn’t have to touch on all the bases, because they were just a given. 

Today you have to be careful, because people will wish to add and subtract to what you are saying just because it seems they don’t like the discussion to begin with.  I’m sure we all do it in some fashion, but today it seems so over the top. 

Its almost as if we live with fear constantly, and different viewpoints are looked upon with fear.

When I saw some reactions to Rachel Held Evan’s new book about ‘biblical womanhood’ I saw some faith circles that need to let go of the fear, and embrace the faith!   They seem so afraid of questions, and people that find doing life a bit different than what they had in mind is a threat.

They remind me of politics and the media twisting and turning facts to encourage viewers/supporters to think as they do, and those that can’t?  WHOOP up your base with all kinds of strange ways of looking at things, and YES its even okay to be downright dishonest about it – to attack the opponent.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Christianity and domestic violence

5 comments Posted by Hannah at 2:20 PM

In Recognition of Domestic Violence Awareness Month:  Articles of Domestic Violence in the ChurchDomestic violence and the Church Links and the World


As we all know abuse is not a gender issue, but a human one.


Family + False Religion = Violence

The very agent that was designed to bring healing and comfort--the church--must then reexamine its teachings, traditions, and practices that support the baser passions and drives for greed of power and control. The church can be and should be the most reliable agent for healing and restoration. The church must be a loud voice against family violence. – Sounds of Encouragement



Domestic Violence Documentary

Sin By Silence

is a documentary of women in prison in California.   

Sin by Silence is a domestic violence documentary film by Olivia Klaus that offers a unique gateway into the lives of women who are the tragedies living worst-case scenarios and survivors - women who have killed their abusive husbands. Based on the first inmate-initiated and led support group in the entire United States prison system, the film reveals the history and stories of the members of the group Convicted Women Against Abuse created by inmate Brenda Clubine in 1989. By following five women's abusive experiences that led to their incarceration, the film take viewers on their journeys from victim to survivors, reveals the history of the Battered Women Syndrome in the state of California, and shatters misconceptions. This documentary is a production of Quiet Little Place Productions.

In 2011, the film had its television premiere on Investigation Discovery to over 2.2 million viewers.

Within the last couple of months Governer Brown signed the “Sin By Silence’ bills into law.

Investigation Discovery Channel is now reairing this program on October 24, 2012.  You can check out their website to see clips, and check which channel and time it will be available in your area.


No Way Out But One 

In 1994 Holly Collins became an international fugitive when she grabbed her three children and went on the run. It all happened because a family court had ignored Holly’s charges, the children’s pleas, Holly’s broken nose, Zackary’s fractured skull, and other medical evidence of domestic violence. The family court in Minnesota gave full custody of Zackary and Jennifer to Holly’s ex-husband. It was at that point that Holly came to believe she and the children had No Way Out But One.

In September of 2011, Holly and her children returned to North America.  All Charges were dropped, except for the ‘contempt of court’.

Documentary Channel is airing this program on 10/29/12, and you can check to see if your TV provider is available on the site.

Here and Now have an interview with this family, and what they are doing presently.


Domestic Violence and the Church

Video I found that interviews a woman, and a reformed man. The husband in this case stated that the Christian counseling wasn’t what they needed, because they were more concentrated on authority of the husband. He speaks of how he wasn’t served well by the church counseling, although I’m sure it was well intended.


Domestic Violence Facebook Pages


Break The Silence Facebook Page presents stories of people that are effected by domestic violence.  It also has resources for victims and their families.


Church Survivors Facebook Page


New Book on Domestic Violence

Should I Stay or Should I Go? New Book by Lundy Bancroft.

Here are two sample chapters for Lundy’s new Book.

Resources for the man that is serious about his change

and Chapter Two as well. What’s it All About


Domestic Violence and the Church articles

A open letter to John Piper about his view on divorce is written from a man’s prospective regarding the domestic violence he lived with, and how John Piper’s love of powerteachings on abuse, marriage, and divorced effected his life.


Your teaching has dangerous consequences: people like me read your words and take what you say very seriously. When you leave no room in your church for abused and broken divorcees, that has real world effects. I am such a broken person, and I do not know where I’ll end up. I am fighting the guilt and shame of divorcing my wife and I have to remind myself every day that my guilt and shame are not real – that there is no condemnation because I am in Christ. What I feel is based on how men like you view me, not how God views me. I hope that I can find believers with whom I can some day open up and have a trusting  relationship again. Right now I am scared to talk to any believers at all, for judgement is just a few words away. I know for certain I will never end up in your church and I will cringe every time you are quoted. It is difficult to respect a man who would call me to endure torture in a situation he does not understand.


Abuse and God’s Mercy: Martin’s Story is written by another man – also a victim of domestic violence in the church.  He was divorced, and remarried to a wonderful wife.  He speaks of his journey that God has place him on, and the rejection of him in ministry due to his remarriage.  Its an inspiring story of how faith helped him overcome, and learn to do God’s will for his life.


To the best of my knowledge, no church exists that would ordain a pastor with my background.  I rejoice in my service at the Mission and will wait on the Lord for the next opportunity.  At least now there’s no quit left in me.  God has given me enough trial to know – there’s no option besides perseverance for me.

There is a God in heaven that is more powerful than the nastiest group of Deacons, Elders, or Pastors.  He will show each of us His path for us to go, and He loves each of us no more than the other, that is without limit.

Less important than a pair of socks

Biblical Personhood writes a short story of over the top submission, and leaves everyone in the dust besides the father.

I was a teenager at the time. I was crying as I told my mother of my problem.

Then he bursts in. He does not await his turn to speak. He bellows: “There should be eight pairs of socks in my drawer and there are only seven!” My very submissive mother leaves me in the middle of my sob story, to go and find my father’s 8th pair of socks.

It is not like he needs those socks right now, mind you. He is not on his way somewhere and desperately need the black socks to match his clothes. He simply dislikes the thought that not all his things are in the right places.

Silence and violence in the church is an article by Theological Curves

For five years I asked the seminary where I was teaching if we could have a chapel service that addressed family violence and abuse. I was dreaming of a service that offered hope for survivors and solidarity from those who had been impacted by violence directly or indirectly. For five years I was told in a variety of ways that abuse was not our concern nor an appropriate issue within a seminary. Some years it was a direct verbal message, other years I would be politely listened to and then would never hear a follow up or was told after the fact that all chapel times were already scheduled.

All of this despite the fact that recently one of the graduates from this seminary was convicted of murdering his wife and that every semester I had students in my office discussing their own past and current abuse.

The Issue at the Heart of Domestic Violence By Danni Moss – a friend of mine that has passed away.  I’m blessed that her family decided to keep her blog up, and her ministry alive by her words even after she passed.  We still miss you Danni!


Domestic Violence and Fundamentalist Christianity

The religion they practiced tended to focus on the darker aspects of Christianity. They focused on the sufferings of Christ on the cross, His torments. They focused on the torments of hell for unrepentant sinners. They focused on how BAD people were, how we were all born in sin and would die in sin, did we not repent, and suffer the torments of hell in the lake of fire forever!

There was no carrot in front of the donkey's nose: it was the devil with a pitchfork prodding the donkey from behind, all the way.

They also blamed EVE, for letting sin into the world. We were all children of Eve. They also had a peculiar relish in eschewing the sins of Sodom and Gomorrah, and the Whore of Babylon, and the adulterous woman that Jesus saved from stoning. It was impressed on us as girl children that any immodesty on our part, the least bit of natural human curiosity about the opposite sex, was shamefully our fault and could lead to dire consequences here on earth in addition to damning us to hell forevermore. My mother was excessively modest, appearing to be frightened of and uncomfortable inside her own body. I think she wished not to have a body at all, and wished no one else did, either.


The Girl Effect, part 4  On this blog (Yeshua, Hineni!)there is a series of articles, and they are all worth reading!  I wanted to link to this one, and to point out the resources at the end.

I Want you to know, if you know someone, or if you are currently experiencing domestic violence - This is not what G-d calls you to. Find HOPE.  G-d wants you to have health and healing. He wants you to thrive. YOU ARE NOT CALLED TO BE "submissive" to abuse. This is not at all what G-d designed when the mandate after the Fall was given.  This is not what was given to us at Sinai. This is not the freedom that Y'shua brings, and that Paul heralds. It simply is not.

John MacArthur discounts the seriousness of abuse 

Barbara writes about YET another pastor that claims he ‘gets it’, but YET AGAIN clearly has noPastor has his head in the sand clue what he is talking about.


She starts her article off by quoting John MacArthur:

“If a violence-prone husband becomes agitated and abusive, the wife should remove herself from danger, by leaving the home if necessary. God has promised that He will not test us beyond our ability to endure, but will always make a way of escape (1 Corinthians 10:13). Sometimes escape is the only way. If you have children and they are in danger, take them someplace where you will be secure until you feel you may safely come back.
If you are not truly in any physical danger, but are merely a weary wife who is fed up with a cantankerous or disagreeable husband–even if he is an unbeliever who is hostile to the things of God–God’s desire is that you stay and pray and sanctify that husband by your presence as a beloved child of God (1 Corinthians 7:10-16). The Lord will protect you and teach you in the midst of the difficult time.

Just as John Piper, and many other pastors they never tell you to call the police.  They tell you to stay away until you feel it is safe to return.    The ‘deal with it’ attitude is what is killing the trust between Christ Followers, and the so called ‘leaders’ of the church.  Its irresponsible for pastor’s to speak of domestic violence in the church when it is clear they have NOT educated themselves on the issues, dangers, and damage.


Poems and Prose about domestic violence


The Last Straw lists poems about domestic violence. 

Poetry about children and domestic violence


What It Means To Be A Victim


Will you love me to death?




You Can't




These are just some of the awesome sources that I have found within the last week, and I honestly can’t remember them all.  There has been so many good articles that cover this topic, and I know I’m missing SOME!


I also have many other resources on my Emotional Abuse and Your Faith resource links page that I try to add to regularly.


If you have any articles, facebook pages, videos, poems or prose about domestic violence and the church…or the world?  I would love for you  to share them here in the comment section!

Tuesday, October 09, 2012

Jack Schaap Scandal and Heresy

0 comments Posted by Hannah at 2:16 PM

Nice Try JackI wrote an article a little while back called, Jack Schaap Fired and then Exposed.  Since that time loyal IFB’ers (Independent Fundamental Baptist) have followed their pattern of the 4 steps of denial that Bruce Gerencser described very well in his article,  The IFB River Called Denial.  They must learn to deal better with this Jack Schaap’s Scandal. 


Independent Fundamental Baptist’s Behavioral Steps after Jack Schaap Scandal

First, they deny.  When the Schaap scandal first became public, IFB commenters on blogs and news sites were quick to deny that Schaap had done anything wrong. The accusations were lies and they were certain that Schaap was completely innocent. (IFB pastors are often worshiped like a god)

Second, they marginalize. When they could no longer deny the reality of the Schaap scandal, they turned to letting everyone know that Schaap was a “sinner” just like everyone else and, while his “fall” was regrettable, people should not judge the IFB church movement or First Baptist Church negatively. One bad apple doesn’t spoil the whole bushel. (actually it can)

Third, attack the critics. Instead of owning the scandal, many IFB defenders decided to attack those who reported the scandal or wrote negative things about Schaap, Jack Hyles, First Baptist Church in Hammond, and the IFB.  You can read about one such attack here.

Across the blogosphere, in discussion forums, in blog comments, and emails, the defenders of the IFB have attempted to ameliorate  the scandal by attacking people like me. They can’t dismiss my impeccable IFB credentials so they attack me personally or they dismiss me out of hand because I am an atheist. Why should anyone listen to what I have say, they write. I am a God-hater. I am bitter, angry, have an axe to grind.

They try and discredit the messenger so they won’t have to deal with his/her message. The goal is direct attention away from the facts.

Fourth, if all else fails, attack the victim. Let’s not forget that there is a victim in the Jack Schaap scandal. Schaap’s “sin” was not a victimless one. He had sexual relations with a minor in the church. Some media sites are reporting that the girl was being counseled by Schaap. (in Ohio, such a relationship is illegal)

He isn’t kidding either.  I had over 8000 hits on that article in less than 24 hours, and I received some strange comments – good comments – comments from hurt.  At the time of the Jack Schaap scandal they made comments about how they were NOT going to cover things up like the Jerry Sandusky scandal at Penn State.  Its to be expected that people were reeling over this, and at first WISH To be in denial because it HURTS!  How they handled things afterwards?  There truly is no comparison. 


One group (Penn State) seemed to own the sin with growing maturity, and the other reminds me of young teenagers. 


The type that is shocked they got caught, and deny everything.  Then they move on to how it is NOT that bad, and how others ‘made’ them do it.  They get mad and defensive at the circumstance, and everyone in connection with it.  I have seen this type of behavior time and time again in YOUNG teenagers, and then they come to a fork in the road for their life.  Do they continue such behavior when caught doing something, or do the own their actions. 

Friday, October 05, 2012

Poem about Emotional Abuse

20 comments Posted by Hannah at 6:23 PM

Poem about Emotional Abuse
In light of Domestic Violence Awareness Month I went back to a poem on emotional abuse, sexual abuse that I wrote one night.  I look at the date of the post - 11/15/07 - and realize how far my life has come.

I wrote it from personal experiences, and those that you hear about often from others.  I have goggle hits on this poem about domestic violence since that date.  It was time of great hurt, frustration, and feelings of being lost.  Why am I the only one that doesn't get it type of thing.

From what I remember about that time I was struggling with how to deal with rages, and then later the push for closeness afterwards.  There was never any discussion, remorse, repentance.  It was the old - forgive and forget.  Act like nothing happened, and lets just go to bed.  If we have to do it another way?  The rage would start again.

I was on a faith board, and a abuse board at the time.  I had been ripped to shreds at the faith board.  I had be told to forgive 7 x 70, and yet the habitual behavior couldn't addressed because it made him mad.  The fact it angered him was enough for them to feel it needs to be left alone.

People too often try to combine trust and forgiveness.  That combination is not a God thing, but a human one.  Its used when they don't know how to deal with evil, and quite frankly don't wish to either.  The result may not fill their formula for a 'happy ending', and fill their testimony wall.

Forgiveness is for the person, and it can bring so much healing.  Trust may never return for a number of reasons.  The two aren't connected no matter how much people want them to be.

There are circumstances in which parties can earn their trust back, but there has to be much humility.  Its not on their time line after all - if there is pressure it takes you back to square one.  It can happen of course.

Then there are times in which trust may never be a good option in certain circumstances.  You can forgive a pedophile, but you wouldn't have them babysit. Its also acceptable to NOT have them in your life anymore as well.  That is just one example of course - you I'm sure can think of others.

Life is full of custom parts and pieces.  God's word is able to work with that. God created our world full of custom parts and pieces after all.

Yes, change can happen when two people are committed and willing to do the work.  Its hard for both parties, but honestly at times I think it is harder for the abusive party.

They have a hard time seeing 'what is in it for them' when they are pretty much get everything now (as they see it anyway) their way.  They have a strange way of not dealing with the pain they are in, and the pain they cause others.  They see no incentive.  When there is no incentive?  Think of the mindset here .... why would they bother?

The one line in the poem, 'You can’t intimidate into intimacy with someone you love' was mentioned to me at the time.  It struck me right between the eyes.  So often you see that happen - be it in churches, or marriages.  You don't have intimacy with intimidation, fear, guilt, manipulation.  They are polar opposites, and yet are encouraged way to often to make things work.

Domestic violence, emotional abuse, sexual abuse are soul crushing experiences.  When I finally had the courage to ask for help?  I told the counselor I wanted my "ME" back.  I lost myself completely, and I would NOT be able to help anything or anyone until 'SHE' returned.  (giggles) Of course a new and improved ME that is!

When you read you can see how people can be completely lost within the realm of abuse.

Thank you Lord for being with me all these years, and helping me find that NEW me!  Thank you for helping me see things more clear, and for giving me the courage to step out
despite my fear.  Thank you for helping me see that I'm not a 'bad' person in anyway, because I see error when others refuse too.  If that makes me a rebel?  THANK YOU For helping me a REBEL!  My journey is not done, and I know you will be there with me for the rest of it.  Thank you for making me feel loved...

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