When Jeane Wynn asked me to write a post about being hurt by the church I took a big gulp, and thought which time. As a kid I was at church on Wednesday night, and twice on Sunday. My father was in the navy and we moved around so we changed churches quite a bit. However, the time in my life when I first experienced pain by the people of the church was when I was a very young mother, and a gal and I had a huge disagreement about something rather stupid. I apologized, and she treated me like the dirt on her shoe. I can remember continuing to make it right because I felt horrible that I had hurt this person however she wouldn't budge. A very wise pastor's wife told me that I had done what was right, it was now in her corner. That didn't omit the hurt, it did however, give me a place to start. She also told me to begin praying for her which I did. Five years after the incident, and at a time in my life when our family was going through something pretty intense, I received an apology letter in the mail.
I was literally blown away and I knew that God had gotten to her heart. This wasn't the last time I was hurt within the walls of the church, and I know it won't be the last, because the people inside the church are human, and they make mistakes. The only thing that is different between them and those out in the world is their desire to be more Christlike. As someone who has been hurt within those walls, my desire is to love like Christ loved, and to be willing to admit I am wrong to heal the hurt. When we are vulnerable with each other we take a risk of being hurt, I know that God wants us to be vulnerable so that we can use our stories to encourage others.
For me praying for those who have caused pain is my way of dealing with the hurt. Another, since I am a writer is journaling about it, that gives me another avenue. And . . . I just remembered something else that wise pastor's wife told me. She told me to write it out in a letter, everything, and mail it . . . not to them, to someone you trusted and have them destroy it. When I would get really upset about the above situation I would write pages and send it to my mom who would burn it in their fireplace. I can't tell you how much that helped me at that time.
This new book, Jaded by Varina Denman is about being hurt within the walls of a place we are suppose to feel safe, the church.
Ruthie Turner resents the Christians in her small Texas town, but when she falls for the new preacher, she must release her bitterness...and learn to love. On the surface, nothing seems to change in this dull town-yet God always works beneath the surface.
About this author