- File Size: 1484 KB
- Print Length: 125 pages
- Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0979429307
- Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
- Publisher: One Way Cafe Press; 1 edition (December 30, 2013)
- Publication Date: December 30, 2013
- Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
- Language: English
- ASIN: B001U88E5E
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Enabled
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- #1686 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Religion & Spirituality > Christian Books & Bibles > Christian Living > Family
- #2595 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Religion & Spirituality > Christian Books & Bibles > Christian Living > Women's Christian Living
- #4662 in Books > Christian Books & Bibles > Christian Living > Family
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Woman Submit! Christians & Domestic Violence Kindle Edition
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The book gave some excellent guidance in how to talk to someone you think is in this situation and how best to help. Although the material is mostly from a biblical perspective, the advice it provides would be useful for anyone, regardless of religion. For example, I was surprised to find that the trite comments we think are helpful and encouraging, are instead just the opposite. And she explains why women are so relunctant to go to the police or their pastors for help. This book should be in every church library and required reading for all pastors and counselors!
I think the author is stretching some of the scripture to allow for divorce. I have been looking into scripture for years for an out in my own case. I divorced my own abusive husband almost ten years ago after being separated from him nearly four years. I looked and looked for a biblical out, but saw none that wouldn't force me to either live in solitude or else remarry and live in adultery. Jesus said very plainly that if a woman divorces her husband and marries another man that she commits adultery. If I remarry while my biblical husband is still alive, I will be living in unrepentant sin and will go to hell because adulterers and adulteresses will not inherit the kingdom of heaven. I don't understand why God didn't allow an out for women like myself who are being abused, but He didn't. I am 32-years old and will never know the love of a Christian husband. I get really angry that my life is so useless.
Reading the book was hard for me because stuff like this is sometimes a trigger. I've suffered from PTSD for years. I'm better these days, but still have effects at times. I made it through the book okay after having to take a few breathers.
Some women are addicted perhaps to the abuser. In my case, I knew what he was about and wanted out pretty much immediately, but when I pulled out the Bible and read what it said about divorce, I pretty much saw that I was caught in a no win situation. I was only 17 years old and I was then provided with the choice of staying with my abusive husband or to separate and live the rest of my life alone with no family ever as the only two options that were in line with God's will in regards to marriage.
In my case, it wasn't even the typical battered pattern with the honeymoon phase and such. I got married and days afterwards he told me that he was going to make the days with my father seem the most pleasurable and the beatings and abuse began. The only breaks I got from the abuse were when he went to work or went to be with someone else like friends, family, or to try and convince his ex-gf to come back with him. About a couple months after we were married, he asked me how I'd feel if he divorced me and went back with her. I was 17 and already my dreams of having a loving family were ruined.
My husband was a lot older than I. I had never dated and was a virgin when I met him. He soon would end that part. I didn't want to be with him and he didn't care. He told me from the start that I was his and if he couldn't have me then no one else would. I read the Bible and found where if a man seduces a virgin who wasn't engaged that he was to marry her, so I had to marry him. I had kept telling him I didn't want to do it because it was a sin to have sex when you weren't married. He didn't care and did whatever he wanted to me. I then figured I needed to hurry up and marry him then because he was going to have sex on me whether I wanted or not and I didn't want to keep sinning. Then I was hoping that he would end up dying sometime during the marriage so I could be free of him and not have to have him touch me anymore.
No one helped me. I kept trying to get help, but no one cared. I was blamed before the marriage for the sexual stuff and I kept trying to tell people that I had told him I didn't want to do it and he kept doing it anyway. He told me he wasn't going to leave and that I was his. I had no idea what to do. I was only 16 when it started and had absolutely no experience dealing with that and he was older by almost 11 years and did what he wanted. I was really scared of him. Terrified more like it.
During the marriage he had on occasion did things up to beating me against a wall, medicine cabinet, heater. I think he had poisoned me because for a while I was really sick and he insisted on cooking. I even had white streaks on my fingernails and had trouble walking. He wouldn't let me go to the doctor at times and told me he would tell me when I needed to see a doctor. The pilot lights on the gas stove kept getting blown out for about two to three weeks around same time as when he'd go to work and I'd be sleeping. I'd wake to the smell of gas. It mysteriously stopped after I mentioned that the pilot lights kept getting blown out. It was after then when he kept cooking the meals and I'd be getting sick with white on my fingernails. He was going to set fire to me the day of the Oklahoma City bombing. I had been watching it on the news and was getting ready to go to the college and was brushing my teeth. I didn't end up getting the toothpaste rinsed out like I thought and when I got home from school he was there and he went off on me. He ended up penning me on the bed and telling me he was going to make love to me and burn the clothes off my body. I was screaming and crying and wanting someone to help me, but I was alone as usual. I had tried getting police to assist me before, but my husband was a government employee and was on first name basis with the cops. They refused to help and thought it was amusing that I'd even tried getting them to do so. And what I went through to get away from him was an even bigger ordeal than what I went through while I was living with him.
But after my baby girl was born, I couldn't stay. I didn't want him to hurt her. I sinned and disobeyed God to keep my daughter safe from her father. He ended up with visitation rights though and ended up abusing her to get at me and the only way to protect her it seemed was to go with him and take care of her myself during the visitations. After I filed for divorce though, he wouldn't allow me to do that anymore and just kept abusing her. Before I filed, he had even grabbed my pepperspray and was going to spray her with it. She was about five months old at the time. Some of it got on her and she was screaming in pain and I grabbed her up and yelled at him. His cop buddies refused to do a thing to him about it though. My ex is now a RN working at a VA hospital. I'm so glad I'm not a veteran.
The book seemed to indicate that a lot of women stayed because they were addicted to their husbands. Like I said, I know that wasn't the case with me. In my case, I tried to take it and keep the marriage vows until death do one of us part. I didn't want to go against God. After my daughter was born though, I put her before God and got her out of there as best as I could.
I have never understood the proverb about acknowledging God and He'd direct your path. That's a theme in this book. I've heard that before, but it's never made sense. When I've tried using the Bible to solve my problems, all I get are words of hopelessness it seems. And I've tried getting God to tell me what He wanted me to do before and I'm still waiting years later I guess.
Throughout the book, Ms Andersen paints a compelling picture that provides answers to the question "Why doesn't she just leave?" For the Christian wife, besides other pressures like economics and fear for her safety, the pressure--and teaching--to stay with or return to her abusive and violent husband comes from Christian leaders and the Christian community, and all too often even from a woman's church. Considering that in Isaiah 58, God spells out that the fast he will honor is that of delivering people from oppression, it is reprehensible that the church has not been leading the charge against domestic violence, but instead has been perpetuating the oppression of women. Society has had to educate Christian leaders about family violence and appeal to them to do their part to teach against it and stop it. The statistics in chapter 5 were especially chilling. That 1 in 4 women had experienced domestic violence as an adult, and another survey said 50% of women who had been abused never reported it to anyone. This would suggest that 50% of women have experienced domestic violence as adults! I repeat, this book is sorely needed! The church must stop sanctioning wife oppression!
Woman Submit! also goes deeper than other books dealing with the abuse of Christian women. "Keeping the Faith" by Marie M. Fortune, for example does correct misinterpretations of biblical passages, but it does not go deep enough. For a woman who has had "Wife Submit! in everything and no matter what he does" pounded into her head, a writer saying the wife does not need to yield all the time and that the husband is commanded to be nurturing, just does not carry much weight. But Ms. Andersen points out the passage in Proverbs that was so helpful to her. When wisdom enters an abused woman's heart, knowledge, discretion, and understanding will deliver her from the way of the evil man. There it is: God is for deliverance from an abuser.
Thank-you, Jocelyn for obeying God and writing this book. It must have been tough to have to relive the pain of what you went through in order to write it in such a succinct (in that nothing was repeated or wallowed in) yet thorough way (taking the time to write enough detail that we get the picture and to explain Bible words and meanings). I will definitely use your book as a resource in my effort to help women.
In addition to this wonderful and helpful book, please check out Jocelyn Andersen's blog, [...]. The post "A Question of Submission" for example, adds insight about the Ephesians 5 question, and other posts keep us up-to-date on the comments, teaching, and efforts of popular Christian leaders.
Waneta Dawn is the author of Behind the Hedge, a novel. Visit [...] to read chapter one, for information on the damaging effects of non-physical violence, and/or to order.
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