While I don’t think I have been abused by religion, I am taking the time to do the exercises as outlined in the book; Recovering From Religious Abuse, 11 Steps to Spiritual Freedom written by: Jack Watts. I do know I have been hurt by religion, but hurt and abuse as described and presented in the book, and I believe are two different things. I will admit, one of my greatest concerns is that I may have at times been an abuser. I don’t think I have been but this journey will hopefully help me understand where I am at, and in the process, help others as I journal each day of the steps outlined in the book.
As I journal my thoughts regarding this book, I realize my need to ask God for help moment by moment. I need to surround myself with people who will encourage me in the process to be the best I can be. I also need to talk to friends to tell them what I am doing with this process. I am even posting it via blog postings to see what happens.
I recognize that with the ministry I do there is a real need to also surround myself with real friends to encourage me on my faith journey. Who do I know that has any kind of understanding as to my past experiences related to the religious community? Who would understand without judgment in helping me be at a place where I can fully encounter God? I have one friend I meet with on a regular basis that sort of falls into that category but our meetings haven’t been as frequent recently as I would like. There are some good reasons for that I guess, but it still doesn’t make it easier.
God I want you to remind me of the things I need to do, I want you to encourage me, I want you to help provide real friends, but also help me understand myself more on this journey. I realize there is work to do to experience that fire in my life once again. Give me a fire that burns so brightly that others can feel the warmth in cold weather, a fire so hot that in times of difficulty enemies will stay away lest they get burned. Holy Spirit send your fire, may my life, emotions, and feelings be witness to the fire you send.
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