Five Indicators of an Evil Heart

Christ Centered Counseling
January 19, 2015

As Christian counselors, pastors and people helpers we often have a hard time discerning between an evil heart and an ordinary sinner who messes up, who isn’t perfect, and full of weakness and sin.

I think one of the reasons we don’t “see” evil is because we find it so difficult to believe that evil individuals actually exist. We can’t imagine someone deceiving us with no conscience, hurting others with no remorse, spinning outrageous fabrications to ruin someone’s reputation, or pretending he or she is spiritually committed yet has no fear of God before his or her eyes

Find out how you can tell the difference between an ordinary sinner and an evil person by reading the rest of Leslie’s article HERE.

Stupid People

Practical Theology for Women
January 10, 2014

Whoever loves discipline loves knowledge, but he who hates reproof is stupid. Pr. 12:1

Proverbs 12:1 makes me giggle everytime I read it. The Bible uses the word stupid? Really?! I looked it up to see the Hebrew word, and sure enough, it means stupid. It could also be translated brutish or senseless. Whichever translation you use, the word is sobering in connection with something the vast majority of us hate – reproof.

Reproof is a negative comment, reprimand, or rebuke. Nobody LIKES negativity. Nobody likes being reprimanded. But the wisdom from Proverbs 12:1 is you better not HATE it. Dislike of reprimand is normal. Hate of reprimand will destroy you.

Read the rest of Wendy’s article HERE. I forwarded this to my older children with a little note telling them that I am fervently praying they will grow in wisdom and be open to reproof when it comes. I did give the caveat that some people get their kicks out of reproving every dot and tittle, and wisdom also requires us to take some reproof with a baseball sized grain of salt. However, when you hear echoes of the same reproof coming from two or more sources, it may require some serious consideration. People who don’t seriously consider reproof are fools. You can read more about how to know if someone is a fool HERE.

Is Scripture Bondage to You?

The following link is from A Cry For Justice Blog
January 4, 2015

I am linking to this article because I wonder how many good Christian women can relate to this testimony? Is Scripture bondage to you? If it is, that could be your first red flag that something is rotten in Denmark. Life in Eden changed. But then, you’ve also probably been told that’s “normal.”

I was told by my Christian counselor [2012] that “scripture was bondage to me.” I was offended.

  • We ought to esteem others higher than ourselves
  • We have to love the unlovely
  • Jesus opened not his mouth
  • A wise woman builds up her house, a foolish one tears it down by the words of her mouth
  • We ought to forgive as Christ has forgiven us lest we receive not His forgiveness
  • We cannot manipulate as is the sin of witchcraft but rather with longsuffering submit and pray for and heap burning coals and rejoice in trials n tribulations
  • We cannot abstain lest by mutual consent
  • In this life we will be treated harshly and unfairly…do we think we will receive differently than Christ Himself?
  • It is only God who vindicates, don’t let the sun go down on your anger, trust God, do good despite what others do to you
  • You control yourself…guard your heart from bitterness n keep a right spirit
  • Wives submit and don’t have a Jezebel spirit of control
  • As you submit and show forth your soft answers that turn away wrath and by your quiet and meek spirit…it will naturally win over your husband by observing your spiritual conduct and he will rise to the position of Godly headship convicted
  • You cannot leave the unbeliever …how do you not know that he won’t change and you don’t sanctify him and your children? God Hates Divorce

My ex-husband used scripture AGAINST me because he knew I loved Jesus and wanted to live it FOR Jesus and hear “well done” and be an example and keep my relationship with Christ and not slip into the flesh. He guilt-tripped me. He manipulated me. He quoted our pastor who said I was too strong willed and needed a heavier hand to force me into proper submission lest I “put a ring in (my ex’s) nose and lead him.” He quoted male Christian friends, popular book authors, no “Jezebel” spirit, I’m under his covering…like an umbrella and if I reject his leadership as God ordained, I get wet so to speak leaving his covering, BUT it is also I who breaks a hedge and allows for Satan to wreak havoc in our entire family because of my disobedience to God in disobeying my husband.

I was counseled to fast and pray MORE, anoint his pillow with oil so as he slept the Holy Spirit would honor my prayers penetrating him with dreams or visions. I was told to submit MORE, to simply do as he said DESPITE how he treated me…gaslighting, lies, verbal, emotional, economic, spiritual, sexual and physical abuse.

I did it ALL. I read every book, I sought our pastor, his family, three different times of Christian marriage counseling, His Needs Her Needs book study, older marrieds in the church that could help teach him proper headship and submission and how to be a Godly husband. I prayed more, I fasted more, I submitted more, I had an ongoing email correspondence with Dr Emerson Eggrich, author of Love and Respect [NOTE: ACFJ does not recommend Eggrich’s materials for abuse scenarios]. I implemented his advice to be QUIET, not speak, not voice my opinion verbally, I called 9-1-1… one police officer fussed at me, pregnant, hysterical sobbing, saying “This is your HUSBAND and here you are thinking God will bless you as you talk down on your HUSBAND?” He said this to me because I was telling him the words my ex called me and how he’d hurt me… fussed at by an officer… and YES, I anointed his pillow with oil.

And then, I broke.

Read the rest of this abuse survivor’s testimony HERE.

Conservative Christians and Mental Illness

Practical Theology for Women
December 14, 2014

I recently read a handout from a conservative Christian college’s psychology class likening sending someone with eating disorders to a eating disorder clinic to sending someone with a pornography problem to a pornography clinic. In so many words, it set up vomiting as a sin to be rebuked from Scripture like pornography. It was stunning to read, and my heart immediately ached for those struggling through very real mental health issues who were shamed away from secular medical intervention at that college. Though much good progress has been made on mental health issues and the believer by way of organizations like CCEF, there is obviously still a long way to go.

This is such a good article. Read the rest HERE.

I am Angry

What do you think about anger? Some anger is destructive. It rages and revenges. But sometimes anger is just part of normal life experience. If you’ve ever grieved a loss, you know what I’m talking about. Here is one woman’s confession. There’s a lot packed in this short excerpt, and I’m hopeful that rather than […]

Meek Isn’t Weak

A Cry For Justice
November 23, 2014

In the Bible, the word we translate as meekness — praǘtēs — does not connote weakness. Nor does it convey a submissiveness that is easily imposed on by others. Meekness is a Christian virtue that is a special kind of strength which does not pay back evil for evil.

We have no word in English that is an exact parallel to the Greek word praǘtēs. This has caused another stumbling block for Christian victims of abuse.

Praǘtēs is usually translated as ‘meekness’. But here’s the rub: in the English language, the word ‘meek’ connotes quiet, gentle, easily imposed on, submissive. Sir Thomas Brown explained: “Meekness takes injuries like pills, not chewing, but swallowing them down.”  But praǘtēs means something rather different.

If you’ve ever been confused about this, read Barbara Robert’s insights HERE.