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.
Today I write about who God is to me and to share about the things he has done for me. I could spend a ton of time here. I am reminded of the verse shared with me by Glen Kaiser years ago that I have never forgotten. ‘He who has sinned more, has been forgiven more, and therefore loves God more.’ I know how much I have sinned; I know how much I have been forgiven. I pray that God never lets me forget that, I don’t think he will, and I don’t want to.
I know it sounds like a cliché, but the truth is, God is everything to me. He is the reason I exist, he is the creator, the reason I live, and serve. I can’t think of many more ways to share that. I wonder at times though, have I given so much in a sacrificial way that I have done damage to my family. Were the sacrifices appropriate of me for my wife and children? I love them all, my wife seems satisfied, but she deserves more. I am proud of and honored with my daughter, she has married well, doing well, and I am pleased with where she is at. My son is another story. I love him with a passion but I wonder at times, was his growing up a large part of his life as a ‘pastors kid’ good for him? My daughter grew up mainly as the daughter of someone either involved in music or mental health. She saw the poor times, she saw some of the reward times. My son on the other hand went through some formative years as a PK. He saw the higher than reasonable expectations on him from some in the congregation, he saw things from me I wish he hadn’t seen. I wonder, has the sacrifice for God been worth it for my family, or more appropriately, done in the right way by me?
Make sure to check the blog archive to follow this journal through its entirety, plus an interview with author Jack Watts and the review of the book.
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