Christianity, Abuse, and Divorce

I believe that many Christians are too quick to throw in the towel on marriage.  BUT there are times when one has every right to leave and even divorce their husband or wife.  Those cases are adultery, physical abuse, and emotional abuse.  For the most part the church is quick to help women escape physical abuse but emotional abuse is a different story.   Which is very sad to me.

If a husband or wife was stabbing their spouse with a knife the church and their fellow Christians would be quick to advise them to leave. The Bible  compares our words to swords. Proverbs 12:18 says, “Reckless words pierce like a sword.”  Our words are very powerful and can crush a person.  Proverbs 18:14 says “Who can bare a crushed spirit?” Proverbs 18:21 reads “Death and life are in the tongue.” Words have power to bless and to curse.  Words can be cutting.  They kill the spirits of spouses and children.  They can do a lot of damage.

Would Christ pierce the church with his words? Would Christ crush the Church’s spirit? Would Christ use his tongue to speak death? Would Christ advise a young women who is being tortured by the devil to stay with the devil?  NO!  I think that he would advise her to protect herself and her children and get out.  The Bible tells us in many places that we are to flee from evil.  So why are we, the church, so quick to tell people to stay with their abusers and continue to keep submitting to evil?

If you are in an abusive situation remember that the Lord is your advocate. He loves you.  You  are His Princess (or Prince if you are a man) and as a Christian you are His bride. Deserving of love, to be cherished, to be honored, to be respected, to be built up, to be affirmed…  Please get yourself safe.  Call the national hotline for help 1-800-799-7233.  You can call that number anytime day or night.  Your calls are confidential and anonymous.

The Holy Spirit is your counselor. Find time every day to get away where it’s peaceful and quiet and where you can hear His still small voice spend time alone with Him. Journal your hurt, pain, prayers, and His answers but keep it in a safe place where your abuser can’t find it and use it against you.  The Holy Spirit will advise you on what you need to do. Ask Him for discernment. He will give it to you.

“I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go;
I will counsel you with my loving eye on you.”
Psalm 32:8

If you know someone who is being emotionally abused, be there for them, listen to them, be supportive of them, point them to a domestic violence shelter that is equipped to help them, but please don’t tell them to continue submitting themselves to the abuse.  Jesus Christ would have never told someone to continue to live with the devil, yet Christians every day are telling their fellow Christians to do that very thing.  😥  Satan uses abusive men and women to break down their spouse.  Since marriage is God’s model of His relationship with His people, the Enemy does everything that he can to pervert it. When we advise people to stay with their abusers, we are falling right into the Enemy’s trap.

I will leave you with several resources:

Families Where Grace is in Place by Jeff VanVonderen
Tired of Trying to Measure Up by Jeff VanVonderen

Is Emotional Abuse Biblical Grounds for Separation?

But He Never Hit Me a Christian Primer on Emotional Abuse

Find Domestic Violence Shelters Around the World

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