Today starts a new day; I realize that I have been abused by religion. It took me through Day 8, 9 before I realized this, but I am glad I did. You can go back to see my comments on Day 8 and 9 to see what I am speaking of. 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. While I know that hurt and abuse as described and presented in the book are two different things, I have come to the understanding that in regards to taking advantage of me I have in fact been abused. I will admit, one of my greatest concerns is I may have at times abused religion. I don’t think I have but this journey will help me understand where I am at and in the process help others as I journal each day with the steps outlined in the book.
Over the years I have spoken to many people who have gone through religious abuse. Many of them have turned their backs on the church and some on God, but there are those who recognize that the God presented to them by their abusers is not from the Holy Spirit nor is it in fact, God. If anything, those who abuse and refuse to abide by the concept of love is seen by many outside of the faith, and those who walk with God in the faith, as fools. Unfortunately, many people who consider themselves Christian fall into this category. Those who hurt others so badly think they know God so well they have to project their beliefs on others. They use the opinions of others about them regarding their inappropriate actions as a badge of honor because the last thing they want to admit is they haven’t practiced, lived in, or done the things of God. They make excuses to remain in their pharisaic mindset.
I have unfortunately ran into many of those abusers, they misinterpret scripture, they quit churches and have a history which shows they have issues relating to others in a positive way, especially those outside of the church or those they disagree with within the church. They think they are the tools the Holy Spirit uses to accomplish God’s purpose, but ultimately it is their own purpose, thoughts, and egos that are being boosted.
I have discovered something some of the abusers have yet to discover, or likely never will unless they surrender to the teachings of Jesus, including the loving whosoever. Those of us who have found strength in God’s love no longer yield to, or spend much time concerned about their judgment and rejection. For those who have been abused, I encourage you to find peace in God. I know from experience, God delivers peace.
Let me say, there is a movement of churches wanting to make a difference, I am grateful for that. Those who reject us and practice their pharisaic beliefs will never feel comfortable around people who love. The churches making a difference are filled with people who have been hurt by religious dogmas. There is peace that passes all understanding that God gives us. It is worth it because it is in that peace that we experience the freedom God has for us. For that, I am grateful.
For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, will be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. ~ Romans 8:38, 39
Let the wicked change their ways and banish the very thought of doing wrong.
Let them turn to the Lord that he may have mercy on them.
Yes, turn to our God, for he will forgive generiously.
“My Thoughts are nothing like your thoughts,” says the Lord.
“And my ways are far beyond anything you could imagine.
For just as the heavens are higher than the earth,
So my ways are higher than your ways
And my thoughts higher than your thoughts.” ~ Isaiah 55: 7-9
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