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.
I will say; I am not at the place in my spiritual journey now that I was at in my past, not that it is a good or bad thing, it just isn’t the way it was. I recall the excitement of my faith in my youth, talking in parking lots about reaching people for Jesus, spending time contemplating and reflecting on God, talking about Heaven and so forth. I enjoyed doing this quite a bit while outside in God’s nature. There was definitely a time my all in all reflected on the presence and reality of God. I think it was a part of the early excitement of my faith. I have heard many share similar stories of the vibrancy of faith in their youth, whether as a young Christian, or a young person.
I think that being back at that place would give me more peace, but also show and give evidence to more fruit in my life. I recall how sometimes, those situations led me to a place where others asked questions of me, they appreciated who I was, what I did, what I said. It seems those happy times happened more then. There was certainly a joy that needs to be rekindled.
I realize that each of us, including me, need to progress, search for, and strive to be at home with God on a daily basis. As I sit down to review this book and try and follow through with the journal, I will as well see what happens on this journey, not so much I believe to recover from spiritual abuse, but to better understand it and to also understand how God would bring someone like me home to the place I/we long to be.
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