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How Can We Help the Sexual Abuse Victim?

How Can We Help the Sexual Abuse Victim?

With society's current focus on the Duggars, maybe it'd be a good idea to look into general principles of how to help the victims of sexual abuse. What does a victim deal with? The abuse paradigm is a unique issue in which we need to educate ourselves. “She feels more shunned and rejected than the criminal,”1 explains Dr Dan B Allender in his book The Wounded Heart: Hope For Adult Victims of Childhood Sexual Abuse.  A victim's shame, betrayal and powerlessness can manifest outwardly in lack of trust, self-contempt, depression, self-harm and self-protection by living life behind a facade. In order to survive, the victim frantically pushes down deep the ugly forces that were set in motion – to become like a boil that festers and poisons. The pain and consequences are worse if the authority i ...

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Jumping the Shark with the Duggars

Jumping the Shark with the Duggars

It is the story that just will not go away.   The story of Josh Duggars teenage actions keeps spinning off more and more new stories.   Much like they kept on having more children, it has us asking, 'When will it all stop'? Maybe we are fascinated with them because of their TV series or maybe their standards resonate with some aspects of our upbringing.  But there is no denying that the legend of the Duggars keeps growing. Now the story of the Duggars is hitting mainstream media in Australia.   As is usually the case with the media - which is increasingly becoming tabloid quality -  stories are crafted for 'click-bait' reasons.   Yet, we often fall for the bait, by sharing a story, collecting comments and passing judgement, all in a matter of hours.  The online world tends to operate as ju ...

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Ten things every person should be able to affirm in the face of the Duggar family tragedy

Ten things every person should be able to affirm in the face of the Duggar family tragedy

  I wanted to ignore this story. I really did. But it seems I'm the only one. For some reason, this story is resonating with people. Particularly Christians. Particularly conservative Christians. And the resulting public discourse has left me grieved, disturbed, and embarrassed. I don't know much about the details of the Josh Duggar case. I've picked up bits and pieces from here and there, much of it contradictory, and all of it third-hand, fourth-hand, fifth-hand, etc. So my goal is not to give some penetrating analysis of this particular case. I can't. Few, if any, can at this stage. The data is too limited. What I do want to do is establish some basic points that we should all be able to affirm, whether Christian or not, conservative or not, pro-Duggar or not. Here they are. 1) The ...

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The Church’s Response to Abuse

The Church’s Response to Abuse

"Silence in the face of evil is itself evil. God will not hold us guiltless. Not to speak is to speak. Not to act is to act.”       - Deitrich Bonhoeffer  She comes to her pastor trembling, testing his reaction to her tip-of-the-iceberg disclosure of the cruelty that persists behind the closed doors of her home. Not sure she will even be believed, she has forced herself into this vulnerable position because she is desperate. Inwardly, she fears that even telling anyone about her husband's abuse must be a sin. What will her pastor say? How should he respond? The church is the first place to which a woman should be able to run for protection!  “A support group such as her church family can help her fulfil her role to “do good” to her abusive husband by coming alongside her with encouragement ...

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God’s Heart for Community

God’s Heart for Community

From the very beginning of time, God purposefully designed and destined us for interrelationships.     In Genesis 1:26, we have the first glimpse of God (the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit) determining to create mankind when he said ‘Let us make man in our own own image’  And God did not just create man to display his power, he created Adam to have a direct relationship with him.   As primary as our individual relationship with God is, God also created us for other relationships.   Still in creation, God said that it is not good for man to be alone.   In Genesis 2:18, God said that It is not good for man to be alone.   I will make a helper suitable to him.   For man he created a female helpmeet.   He then instructed Adam and Eve to reproduce and form new family units.   God defined and ...

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