An email thanking me for this blog brings about this quick post. To the sender this blog wants to say thank you for your kind words. This blog understands your pain and works to try and prevent others from getting hurt by American evangelicalism.
“Gratitude is the sign of noble souls.”
Evil people don’t understand justice, but those who follow the Lord understand completely.
Proverbs 28:5 NLT
Harvest Bible Chapel in Rolling Meadows, Illinois
Elmbrook’s No Regrets Conference Video
It was late a few nights ago and I was working on a post and decided to call it a night. I checked my email and cleaned some junk out and read what a couple of people sent me. One note from a female really stopped me in my tracks. It turns out that I write about her former church. Its fifteen years later and she is still hurting over her painful evangelical experience. Her father was an elder and she saw what this blog is doing and took some time from her life to share what this evangelical church had done to her. How she is trying to move forward and how its hard. Almost a generation later and yet its still hard.
I sat at my computer just processing it.
I was caught off guard and I still need to write a response. But I wanted to take a minute to say a few things.
The Behind the Scenes Work and Some Thoughts
I wish you could see what happens behind the scenes at this blog. The phone calls that take place. The emailing that goes back and forth. The struggle with keeping up with the growth of this blog. Going through all the newsletters I get from Christian national churches and ministries, the EFCA, Acts 29, James MacDonald, Sovereign Grace, CCEF and so many others. I also have other email accounts to check when certain churches or organizations block me. In a blog like this information is a precious commodity.
Its a lot of work and I do it while I try and live my life.
To the person who sent me that note. I want to say thank you. Your note deeply moved me. And I have to tell you that sadly I understand your pain. Its almost a decade after the event that triggered this blog. I will never get peace and closure, and I have come to realize that. But as of today I have no high expectations for American evangelicalism. My experiences have taught me otherwise. And when I think of the Jordan Kauflin’s or the Andrew Whites who triggered this blog I have to say this.
You never knew me. It remains your loss. I would have given you a second chance and let things go if you cared and honestly tried. I was willing to be proven wrong and yet you screwed the pooch in how the spiritual abuse was handled.
I learned my lesson.
I won’t step into a evangelical church again.
And because of that I can relate and identify with what others have written to me about.
Again, I just want to say thank you. Your stirring note is the reason why I do this blog. Its why I get little sleep and why I keep up this blog and keep driving it forward. This is a growing and active blog. Yet I really don’t give a damn about the numbers. When I do care then I should stop writing. After all this all started out when an Air Force Officer and leader of Redeemer Arlington taught me why rape and sexual assault is a problem in the United States military through a false accusation. When I learned what abuse of power can be, I learned how it forever changes you. And as a survivor of American evangelicalism any organization that uses abuse to shape and force its way should be categorically rejected.
I’m a survivor. How I do not know. But when I spoke with a counselor once and shared my life she pointed out how I have endurance. How? I don’t know. Each day is a struggle to get through the day, and abuse casts a long shadow over your life. Sadly abuse can define even when you don’t want it to be the case.
But I was moved and want to write a quick post acknowledging your email. And yet its being done anonymously. I will say this, I plan to keep writing about your church. I am not going to stop and will persevere.
I will never hear a sincere, “I’m sorry Dave” and out of that pain is the determination to make sure that others do not have to deal with that garbage.
For one last time I must say thank you….
Okay off to bed.
David Bonner signing off…