Monthly Archives: October 2018

For Heaven’s Sake, Shut Up

I say this in all love and respect… shut up.

For Heaven’s sake, shut up!

Okay, I’ll be honest: I only said that because I know the words “shut up” tend to get people’s attention.  And I happen to believe that’s the same reason Brian Sanders used the phrase in the viral post he wrote four days ago. 

If Brian just wanted attention for his rant, he got it.  But he also warns us not to treat people like enemies just because they disagree with us.  So the whole message is pretty confusing.

This is how the post starts:

“I say this in all love and respect…shut up.  For Heaven’s sake…shut up.

One of Christian music’s biggest voices, Lauren Daigle, made an appearance on the Ellen tv show yesterday.

She sang a song about Jesus called “He’s still rolling stones.”

Well…my facebook timeline blew up.

Some of the comments were…

“Another Christian artist sold out to the world…she’s on the Ellen show and we all know Ellen is gay.”

“Well, I wonder if Christian Radio will continue to play her music now that she’s been on the Ellen show.”

Really people?

Sweet merciful.

No wonder unbelievers don’t like us.

They’re fans of Jesus but not of the people who claim to follow him.”

I agree with this part:  REALLY PEOPLE?

Really???

Think about what he just said and ask yourselves, “Do I really think unbelievers are fans of Jesus— but they just can’t commit to Him until everyone shuts up about Lauren Daigle?”

Really?

First of all, I haven’t heard one negative thing about Daigle’s Ellen show debut. Not one.

Mostly I’ve heard Christians reacting the way we always react when we hear the word “God” somewhere near a celebrity.

We’re peeing our pants with excitement. 

Just like when the priest delivered his sermon at this year’s Royal Wedding…  We were all like,  “YAY! Celebrities doing church-y stuff!”

And just like when Chris Pratt said “there is a God” at an awards show…  Again, all of us celebrated, “YAY! Celebrities doing church-y stuff!”

We basically explode with happiness every time a famous person throws us a bone and allows something religious to happen somewhere nearby.

So I’m a little skeptical that Brian Sanders knows a bunch of people who are saying “Don’t speak to gay people” or whatever.

I’m more inclined to believe that some people have questioned whether Lauren Daigle’s songs are biblical–or if she’s only making godless humans feel good about themselves (I’ve questioned the lyrics to one of her songs before.)

In light of the fact that not everyone who says “Lord, Lord” truly follows Him, I would love to hear from the Christians who are careful and thoughtful whenever a pretty song gets approval from the World.

Being popular doesn’t necessarily mean something is wrong, but we should do the hard work of figuring out The Truth instead of assuming. And we shouldn’t be told to “shut up” while we’re searching for the right answer.

I’ll let Brian continue:

“Lauren Daigle had an opportunity to sing to millions of people about Jesus…and she took it. Do you really think the devil would give her that opportunity?”

(Answer: Yes. I think–theoretically–the Devil could give Lauren Daigle the opportunity to sing human-centered songs disguised as Christian teaching.  Maybe that’s not what happened. But, since you asked, I think it’s a possibility.  Do you still want me to shut up?)

Brian again:

Second, take people as they are. Jesus does.

…ya know….Jesus never once called the lepers or the Samaritans “fools,” “idiots” or “jerks.”

But scroll through facebook and you’ll see followers of Jesus calling people fools, idiots and jerks.

Yes, Brian.  You’ll also find followers of Jesus telling others to “shut up.”

Back to you:

if you’re on the “wrong” side of politics….
if you live the “wrong” lifestyle…
if you listen to the “wrong” music…

And, if you don’t think Lauren Daigle’s lyrics are preaching solid Christian doctrine…

Jesus made friends of those different from Himself.

As I read Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, we make enemies of those different from us.

Okay–that’s enough, Brian.  I can’t take any more sanctimonious preaching from someone who clearly doesn’t see his own hypocrisy.

This man has not taken the time to understand where someone criticizing Daigle and Ellen may be coming from.  He simply made enemies of them.   

Brian’s post has more than 40,000 positive reactions and almost the same number of shares/reposts!

There are things he said that I can agree with.   But what drives me crazy is the cultural cliche that undergirds the whole post: “If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all.”

That’s a crock of crap for two reasons:

It’s not nice to silence people AND sometimes the Truth demands saying things that aren’t nice.

Christians–please stop telling each other that non-believers are turned off by “negativity.” If that were true, then Brian Sanders would be guilty.

But it’s not true.

Non-believers are turned off by hypocrisy and by the fact that they aren’t allowed to ask valid questions about the meat of Christianity without being told to pipe down and just enjoy the pretty music.   

The saying ought to be: If you can’t say something TRUE, don’t say anything at all.  

Therefore, Brian, the next time your friends are wrestling with the question of whether something is right or wrong and you feel the urge to make a long, contradictory speech suggesting it’s bad to ‘judge’ the truth–just don’t.

I say this with all love and respect.  Just, for Heaven’s Sake, shut up.

Don’t Negotiate with [Family] Terrorists

When we hear about “domestic abuse,” we almost always picture a man beating up his girlfriend/wife.

Usually we’ll include a disclaimer like, “Abuse isn’t always physical!”  But, even still, we tend to assume the psychological/emotional abuser is a man, while his victim is a helpless female…

However, if abuse doesn’t have to be physical (and it doesn’t)–then it’s inexcusable how little documenation exists about female Domestic Abusers.   

Where men are more likely to use their fists, women use emotional manipulation to control those around them. The lack of clear, specific case studies of female abusers can make it difficult for their victims to identify the problem and seek help.

That’s why the work being done by Erin Pizzey (and her peers) is extremely important.  Her book “The Emotional Terrorist and the Violence Prone” is one of the few studies willing to acknowledge that women are guilty of domestic abuse just as often as men…

To quote Pizzey:

“In my experience, men also are capable of behaving as family terrorists but male violence tends to be more physical and explosive. We have had thousands of international studies about male violence but there is very little about why or how women are violent. There seems to be a blanket of silence over the huge figures of violence expressed by women. Because family terrorism is a tactic largely used by women and my work in the domestic violence field is largely with women, I address this problem discussing only my work with women.”

Anyone who has ever been abused by a woman may never have read anything like that before!   The “blanket of silence” may have caused you to feel like you’re the only one in the world being used and manipulated by an unhealthy female.

If that quote both surprises and relieves you, keep reading! Ms. Pizzey helpfully outlines some very specific examples of what female Domestic Abuse looks like:

“Any person suffering an unhappy family situation, or the dissolution of a relationship, will feel some pain and desperation. But a relatively well-balanced person will be… also sensitive, in some degree, to the suffering of the other family members.

Not so the emotional terrorist.

To the family terrorist, there is only one wronged, one sufferer, only one person in pain, and this person is the terrorist herself. The terrorist has no empathy and feels only her own pain

Because conscience consists so largely of the awareness of other people’s feelings as well as of one’s own, the emotional terrorist’s behavior often can be described to be virtually without conscience. In this lack of conscience lies the dangerous potential of the true terrorist.

An additional factor, making the terrorist so dangerous, is…the terrorist believes herself to be unstoppable.  Unbound by the constraints or conscience or empathy, she believes that no cost is too great to pay toward the achievement of her goal.

The terrorist, and the terrorist’s actions, know no bounds. Intent only to achieve the goal (perhaps “hell-bent” is the most accurate descriptive phrase) the terrorist will take such measures as: stalking a spouse or ex-spouse, physically assaulting the spouse or the spouse’s new partners, telephoning all mutual friends and business associates of the spouse in an effort to ruin the spouse’s reputation, pressing fabricated criminal charges against the spouse (including alleged battery and child molestation), staging intentionally unsuccessful suicide attempts for the purpose of manipulation, snatching children from the spouse’s care and custody, vandalizing the spouse’s property, murdering the spouse and/or the children as an act of revenge.”

In reading this description, I hope it makes sense why I’m so concerned by our current culture, which often encourages women to “get angry.”  (I wrote about it here. )

I’m concerned about Feminist activists telling women to tap into their rage, because I have seen the destructive power female emotional abuse can have.

Recently I wrote a conversation between “Younger Me” and “Today Me” because I know I started down the path of Emotional Domestic Terrorism myself, and I wanted to help other young ladies recognize the warning signs.

I have been repeating the idea that “Women Fart, Too”  (over and over, in different ways), because I think it’s a shame how few people are talking about what Erin Pizzey is talking about:

“In a recent case, a Mr. Roberts described to me how, during his marriage, he and his children faced a daily onslaught of verbal abuse from his wife.

Mrs. Roberts was also physically violent to the children.

Now that he has asked for a divorce, she is making use of every weapon in her arsenal. In the children’s presence, she has used drugs and drunk alcohol to the point of extreme intoxication. She has staged several unsuccessful suicide attempts in front of the children, threatened over the telephone to ‘do something stupid,’ promised to kill Mr. Roberts new partner, and assured Mr. Roberts that when she has finished with him he will not have a penny to his name. To Mr. Roberts, all of this behavior seemed perfectly usual.

After all, he had witnessed this sort of commotion for thirteen years of their marriage. When I suggested to him, ‘What you endured is emotional terrorism,’ he suddenly and for the first time was able to see his situation clearly. Now, he realized, his wife’s behavior was neither appropriate nor acceptable. No, this was not the treatment that every man should expect from his wife, either in or out of marriage. No, he does not want his children to be subjected to such extreme behavior any longer.”

There are so many good quotes in this article–especially if you are the spouse or child of an emotionally abusive woman.

But, until my next article about our culture’s failure to call out female sins or the problems with modern Feminism, I’ll wrap up with the rest of Mr. Roberts’ story:

“Because a terrorist is prepared to behave without bounds, usually encouraged by feminist therapists who insist that their clients suffer from ‘low self-esteem,’ pragmatic measures must be taken to define clearly the boundaries of acceptable behavior.

The guiding principle, as in the handling of political terrorists, must be: “There is no negotiating with terrorists.”    Endless telephone calls, conversations, confrontation, gestures of appeasement, and efforts to placate the terrorist’s demands, all serve to reinforce the terrorist’s belief that she is accomplishing something. Only determined resolution in the face of terrorism shows the terrorist that her power is limited.

Furthermore, reassurances, ‘ego boosts,’ and consolations are lamentably counterproductive. Mrs. Roberts soon found for herself a feminist therapist staunchly supporting the erroneous belief ‘All feelings (and therefore behaviors) are valid.’  She was told by this therapist that she has a right to feel and to behave in any manner she chooses, in callous disregard for the devastation inflicted upon the children. Such reassurances serve only to fortify the terrorist’s already pathological, solipsistic, and eternally self-justifying perspective.”

“You’re strong!”

“You’re beautiful!”

“You’re loved!”

These are the only messages our feminist culture wants to give to women… And, the more a woman cries or rages or threatens suicide, the MORE we double down on this strategy of “loving them more” (because they presumably “don’t love themselves enough.”)

How’s that working for us?

It scares the crap out of me that we’re fueling this evil cycle with abusive women by giving them the power they crave.

I wonder: when will we stop negotiating with terrorists?

How to Stop Mass Migration

A few weeks ago, I read the story of a man from Africa who lived in the United States for awhile, on a student visa.

When he and his wife decided to have children, they agreed to live in their country of origin rather than moving to the U.S. because, as poor as their home country was, at least their family wouldn’t have to deal with America’s rampant racism.

His words:

“We had a big discussion whether to raise [our son] in Africa or move to the states. We both grew up in Ghana. But I got my PhD in West Virginia, so moving to America was an option. The job opportunities would certainly be better there. Both of us are professors, and you’d probably laugh if you knew what we got paid here. Healthcare would be better too. You don’t hear of people dying in America because they can’t find an open hospital bed. But despite these things, we decided to raise our son here. Because he’d never have to think about the color of his skin. We never have to explain what it means to be black. Or the rules of being black. One day in West Virginia I got an Amber Alert on my phone. All it said was: ‘tall black male.’ I was the only one in sight so I nearly panicked. Then another day I was walking back to my dormitory. I’d just finished teaching a course. Someone drove by in a red truck, threw a hamburger at my head, and called me the ‘N Word.’ It was 3 o’clock in the afternoon. I don’t want to explain that stuff to my child. It’s exhausting to be conscious of your skin all the time. You either become militant or you become defeated. And I understand why it happens, but extremes of anything aren’t good.”

Do the thousands of people marching North toward the United States know about this reality?

Seriously– do the hopeful migrants in the caravan know how TERRIBLE it is to be a Person of Color in the United States?

Sometimes there are Amber Alerts that say “tall black male.”  And sometimes there’s the N-Word.

If you don’t understand how scary this is–just take it from the dozens of AMERICANS who agreed with this man’s decision to stay in Ghana with his son:

-“I fear for my son’s well being every single day. I traveled to Rwanda last summer for 2 weeks. Never once was I nervous being white there. America has it all wrong…”

-“Living in WV it disgusts me how some of the backwood hicks talk and act towards people of color. I was raised in a military family and have been all over the world and this place is by far filled with the most narrow minded, racist people I’ve ever encountered.”

-“I remember my first time visiting the motherland in Rwanda and I cried. I didn’t have to think about being discriminated against for being black. When the cop cars drove past I knew they weren’t coming after me. No one followed me in stores… Coming back to the states was hard. I think about going back everyday.”

-“This is why they kneel during the national anthem. Maybe someday the racism in our country won’t outweigh all of the positives the US has to offer.”

See? Racism outweighs ALL the positives…

Is this the America the “dreamers” want to live in?

If so, just wait! I haven’t even mentioned the misogyny and rape culture, yet!

You don’t have to look far to find women talking about how hard it is knowing they’re going to be sexually assaulted at any moment.

And God forbid if a person identifies as “LGBTQ.” They can’t even have parades around here without people saying rude stuff!

I guess my point is: the people in a caravan of migrants would have to be very, very desperate to walk thousands of miles in hopes of being taken in by an orange dictator, where innocent citizens fear being shot by police or groped by politicians every, single day.

I mean, I’ve heard that we just elected an attempted rapist to the Supreme Court!

Do the migrants know about these things???

If we truly care about the well-being of poor, displaced sojourners, I think we should warn them about all the danger and suffering they’re going to encounter when they get here!

Shouldn’t someone tell them we’re in the middle of our own #resistance right now? Do they know about the psychological turmoil that makes us long for a place where we don’t have to think about our gender or skin color all the time?

(Gee whiz, we’re exhausted!)

If we want to slow the tide of mass immigration, then we should speak the truth to the caravan of people–the same way we speak when someone hands us a pink hat and a piece of cardboard.

Don’t wait until the Dreamers have secured the right to vote in the U.S.A. before filling their minds with ideas about how awful it is.

Tell them now.

Tell them how very, very hard it is to live here NOW.

#resistance

#WhyIDidntReport…Because You Might #BelieveHer

Last week, the hashtag #WhyIDidntReport was trending on Twitter, so women could share their stories of assault that happened years ago and went unreported, for various reasons…

The theory is that women generally don’t feel safe enough to seek help from the police or other authorities because they’re worried “The Patriarchy” will protect men by brushing off the female victims.

Thus, another popular hashtag cropped up recently, urging society to #BelieveHer.

In watching these Twitter campaigns unfold,  I was angry at first… then I was sad… then I was conflicted…

And now I feel angry/sad/conflicted all over again, knowing how odd it sounds to a new reader that a movement meant for empowering women could make me–a woman–feel such negative emotions.

But I decided this morning that sharing my own reasons for not reporting might go a long way in clearing up a few things.

So…

Here is Why I Didn’t Report:

#1. I was too young to realize it wasn’t normal.  Even now, as an adult, it feels awkward using the word “abuse” without adding qualifiers, such as “It could have been worse.”  For years, I assumed EVERYONE was abused like me.

#2. I depended on my abuser for care, and my abuser wasn’t bad ALL the time.  Therefore, since the damaging memories were mixed with very good ones, I was torn… and I still am.

#3.  I was taught Christians must forgive those who hurt them.  (I know I’m not the only one who has wrestled with the line between forgiveness and enabling future abuse.  So my heart goes out to anyone in this boat–struggling between grace and justice! It’s hard!)

But here’s the most important reason, and it’s why I STILL Haven’t reported:

#4.  My abuser was a woman, and society doesn’t know how to handle stories about Female Monsters.

I understand why certain people fear The Patriarchy–Really, I do.

Feminists are afraid of the old Patriarchy for the exact same reason I am afraid of the Matriarchy they’ve built to replace it.

They don’t want men to have “too much” power, because they’ve seen, first hand, what horrible injustices can be committed by men.

I don’t want women to have “too much” power because of the same first-hand experiences with aggressive females.

It was a woman who made me doubt my self worth. It was a woman who taught me to walk on eggshells in order to placate an unpredictable temper.  It was a woman who filled my mind with warnings of “you’re lucky to have me” and “you won’t survive without me” and “they’ll never believe you.”

And, after all these years, I still wonder if she’s right…

If I sought help, would she be held accountable (to the same standard as an abusive man) and encouraged to do the hard work of rehabilitation?  Or would she be given an excuse, such as “She’s in pain, too” or “Nobody Is Perfect”?

Would I be encouraged for the healing I’ve achieved, despite the lack of remorse all of these years–or would I be dismissed because my abuser cries more easily than I, and because she has more practice manipulating The System?

When the time comes that men are viewed as default aggressors–and all women are assumed trustworthy–will you believe me?

Or will you #BelieveHer?


Addendum: I wanted to add a few links as examples of things that have angered/scared/saddened me lately.  Perhaps it goes without say that the unfounded accusations against Judge Kavanaugh have been pretty upsetting.  I see my abuser in women like Dr. Ford, who rewrite history and then genuinely believe their own lies.  I see my abuser in girls who make up stories about sexual abuse for the attention. I see my abuser in women who are presented with DNA evidence that they’re wrong, and still won’t accept responsibility.  (Go ahead and click that last one.  Loretta and Dean appeared on the Dr. Phil show after Dean was cleared of all charges, yet Loretta STILL believes he’s guilty.)

I know what happens when we try to bring up these examples to Feminists. We’re told cases of lying females are “rare” and that they only muddy the waters in the conversation about justice.

So, again, THAT’S why I’m reluctant to report…

Seriously, New Girl, You Don’t Want Me to Get Angry…

It’s an odd time to be a woman in this culture.  We’re being told how oppressive the Patriarchal system is and how difficult it is for women to have their voices heard…but we’re being told these things by dozens of women speaking at huge conferences and promoting their BEST-SELLING BOOKS.

Think about that for a second.

How long are women going to enjoy having the loudest voices in the culture before they realize the Patriarchy isn’t holding them back at all?

Or maybe they already know they are fueling gender wars by tackling a problem that doesn’t exist, but they just don’t care because being a “Jesus Feminist” gives them the kind of power and attention they want?

It’s a publisher’s dream:  a woman who grew up in the church and now leans politically Left. They can write things like “unexpected” and “fresh” on the book cover!

They know how to promote a Liberal Christian because they’ve done it over and over and over and over and over and over.

Let’s list the female authors who’ve somehow managed to convince readers they are unique, shall we?

-Glennon Doyle

-Jen Hatmaker

-Rachel Held Evans

-Sarah Bessey

-Nadia Bolz-Weber

-Anne LaMott

-Jory Micah, apparently.

(What? You’ve never heard of the last one?  I hadn’t either, until her promoted ads started appearing in my Facebook feed last night.  But I’ll come back to that.)

Ladies–we need to talk.

We need to discuss the fact that men aren’t the ones regularly elevating themselves to places of power by speaking on MY behalf…   

You are. 

Men aren’t the ones leading the discussion on families/relationships using outdated social justice philosophies as their justification.

You are.

(Althought Rob Bell and John Pavlovitz are happy to join you.)

The loudest voices are yours.  YOUR books and blog posts and conferences, worth millions of dollars, are absolutely dominating the Christian culture, and you’re drowning out those of us who have something different to say.

Of course, you still talk about male-dominated systems because it’s a talking point that sells.   But you’re cutting off and shouting above a rising number of female critics who are figuring out what’s happening here.

We don’t like being used.

——-

You female authors, with your pop-psych advice and a spritz of Christianese flavor, I see what you’re doing.  You are winning in the marketing arena.

There’s no sound doctrine in what you say or write. You are led by feelings rather than critical thought.  And you have created an almost-impenetrable wall around yourselves based on the lie that anyone who judges you is a hater…but whenever YOU judge someone, your anger is righteous and just.

Here’s a screenshot to illustrate perfectly:

10.6.18 Get Angry

 

I thought about censoring the names of the women in this conversation. But then I realized, this page was being PROMOTED IN MY NEWSFEED.  Surely Jory Micah won’t mind if I share her opinions with my readers, because what she has to say is so damn* important!

(*Please note: I’m speaking the language of the Edgy-Girl-With-A-Church-Background. Now I just need to wait to be contacted by an agent.) 😉

Get angry, she says.  Let your Righteous Anger rage! Never mind what the Bible says about human anger NEVER leading to righteousness…  Anyone who dares quote from the book of James is a misogynist, probably.

They say they want anger–but what they really want is agreement. Don’t believe me? Why don’t you try to offer constructive criticism to one of the women on that list?

I bet you you’ll end up being accused of  “mocking” or “judging” or just “trying to bring them down.”

10.6.18 Get Angry (1)

I bet you’ll be told you’re not acting very Christlike when you try to hold a Jesus Feminist accountable for HER bad behavior.

She will decide exactly when and why a person is allowed to be angry, thank you very much.  🙂

I’m very familiar with this type of “Sheology,” so I don’t have much hope for a level-headed conversation about doctrine.  It’s difficult engaging with individuals who are always ready to accuse others of “intellectualism,” as if being smart is a bad thing.  I’ll save myself some frustration and just avoid anyone who openly admits her litmus test when judging me is her own feelings, rather than an objectively sound argument in pursuit of TRUTH.

So, the only truth arrow I’ll attempt to send into Feminist Fortess is this one:  you don’t speak for us. 

Hey–new girl–you don’t speak for me.  You shattered that glass steeple years ago, and now you’re holding broken shards to the necks of innocent men, while you indulge your carnal temper fits…

You think anger is a good way to get attention? Okay.  Well, I’m pretty angry myself.

But I’m still working on patience and self-control. (You know? Fruits of the Spirit?)  So I’m not just going to explode all over you and then ask my logical husband to rationalize it later.

If you’ll kindly stop lecturing about how abused American women are for just a second, I hope you’ll hear THIS American woman say very clearly: you’re the one doing much of the abusing.

Teaching women to follow their “intuition.” Teaching women to identify as victims. Teaching them to put their trust in social movements rather than thousands of years of Christian philosophy about the mind and heart….?  (Mind=good. Heart=wicked.  Sorry.)

The message you’re sending is wrong, and you’re hurting people.

On the plus side, you’ve helpfully admitted that logic isn’t your strong suit, so I don’t have to bother building a rational case.    I’ll simply ask that you stop calling yourself an advocate for women, because I’m a woman, and I feel that you’re doing more damage than you realize.

As I sit here, looking at my list of rich, powerful female leaders, God has laid something on my heart which I need to share:

For the sake of our Savior and of the people being led astray by the abundance of poor reasoning in your superficial books, please…

Please stop promoting yourself, girls.

Please take an antacid for whatever is bubbling deep down inside that causes you to write the stupid and irresponsible things you put on social media.

And please stop talking and writing until you have something reasonable to say.