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Recovering from Religious Abuse: 11 Steps to Spiritual Freedom Hardcover – February 1, 2011
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"Recovering from Religious Abuse is a ground-breaking work. Others have written about the problem, but Jack Watts has gone one step further. He has developed a recovery program that works. Millions have experienced religious abuse—Catholics and Protestants. Finally, there's a program available to help wounded Christians get back on their feet. I recommend it wholeheartedly." (Robert McGee, bestselling author of The Search for Significance)
“Those who proclaim to come ‘In the name of God’ should offer a message of truth in love. But not every leader does. Some hurt rather than heal. For those who have been pained by religious abuse—and it does happen—Recovering from Religious Abuse offers stirring thoughts, hope and inspiration toward a real ‘freedom in Christ.’” (Dr. Tim Clinton President, American Association of Christian Counselors)
“There is good news for those who turn away from God because of their experience of hurt and pain at the hands of Christian leaders and others in the body of Christ. The God of the Universe, who loves and cares for us, should not be confused with those who have misrepresented Him. This practical and insightful book, Recovering from Religious Abuse, has been written to help you heal from the wounds that you have received. Out of the caldron of personal experience, Jack Watts shares the insights of his journey in an easy to follow, yet powerful format. Follow the 91-day plan—one day at a time—and your life will be transformed in amazing ways. I highly recommend this book to those who have been wounded, as well as to the counselors who assist them.” (Joseph A. Kloba, Ed.D. Provost & Chief Academic Officer Professor of Counseling Psychology Palm Beach Atlantic University)
“The healing journey for those wounded by trusted spiritual leaders can be daunting. Clearly Jack has walked this road and blazed a trail for those who will follow.” (June Hunt, Founder, CEO & CSO Hope for the Heart)
“I began my journey of recovery from drug and alcohol addiction in February of 1971. I began my recovery from religious abuse in 1978. I wish I would have had this book then. I have spent many years helping people find recovery from their hurts, habits, and hang-ups. During those years I have always looked for material that addresses the issues from both a clinical and a biblical perspective. Jack Watts has done that with this book. He also negotiates the fine line between showing compassion to the victimized (honor the struggle) without allowing them to develop a victim mentality. If you have experienced this type of abuse, you are in danger of confusing God with the abuser. This recovery program will allow you to discover who God truly is in the person of Jesus Christ, without the baggage of the abuse. I heartily recommend this to fellow strugglers.” (Dr. Daryl Pitts, D.Min Pastor, Thomas Road Baptist Church Adjunct Professor, Liberty University)
“I've often heard it said that Christians are the only army that shoots its wounded. For those of you who feel like you've been ‘shot,’ let me recommend Recovering from Religious Abuse. This practical, insightful book has been written to help you heal from the wounds you've received. It's a book that can help you regain your sense of purpose and be everything God ever created you to be.” (Matt Barnhill, Former Vice President, Rapha Treatment Centers Care Ministries Pastor, Riverpoint Church)
“Do you remember how joyful and hopeful you were when you first believed? That seems like a long time ago, doesn't it? This is especially true for those who have been wounded within Christendom—wounded by people they once trusted. That's why Recovering from Religious Abuse is such an important book. By working the 11 steps, disillusioned Christians can regain their sense of joy and purpose. It's a book every Christian should have in their bookcase.” (Orlando P Peccora, MD)
“Religious abuse is far more prevalent than most of us could ever imagine. Month after month during our Healing for the Nations Intensive Retreats, we see a number of people who struggle with the issue. Jack does a great job of presenting a recovery program that enables people to experience Jesus—seeing God for who He really is—not through the distorted lens abuse so often creates. This material is honest and real and encourages that kind of relationship with God. It is refreshing to see his understanding of clinical issues combined with discipleship and pastoral care. This material isn't focused on a victim mentality but, rather, victory in Christ. It offers more than just recovery; it offers growth, healing, and new life!” (Rujon W. Morrison, Co-Founder, Healing for the Nations)
“Where do you turn when you've been wounded by a Christian leader? For those who have been abused—either verbally, emotionally, socially, financially, or sexually—you can turn to Recovering from Religious Abuse, which has been written specifically with you in mind. Jack's tough, no nonsense approach, is precisely what you may need to put your painful past behind you and move forward successfully with your life.” (Jim Baird, Director, B&H Academic)
About the Author
Jack Watts has completed all but his dissertation for a Ph.D. from Emory University. He has worked for nearly three decades in marketing, exclusively serving Christian ministries and publishers. Jack has five children and nine grandchildren and lives in Atlanta.
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After I read it, I gave it to a friend whose family tried to "beat the gay out of him" and religiously abused him. I pray that it will bring him back to knowing that God is not his abuser!!
Chaplain John C. Fitts III, Th.M., BCC, CT (Ret)
I highly recommend this book in conjunction with a support group or a therapist. It's very difficult to work alone.