Regret And Re-Formation

I’ve been blogging for almost ten years, and I’ve shared pieces of my own good, bad (and occasionally excruciating) experiences with the church. I’ve wrestled with God over these experiences, and continue to journey on with him with a limp. One of the most gratifying things about writing online is I hear from fellow wrestlers. Some continue to gimp with Jesus as I do. Others have chosen to run in the opposite direction. I recently heard from someone who fled the fundamentalism of his childhood. His parents were well-meaning followers of a rigid, Bill Gothard-flavored stream of Christianity. Perhaps “pond” would be a better word than “stream”, as this guy said that the church of his childhood seemed to preach that they alone were Real Believers. In any case, his parents expended a lot of energy trying to gain the approval of the self-appointed pope-in-charge of the church – the pastor. His parents’ fear transmitted to their son. “There was no abuse in our home except for the abuse my parents passed on to us. None of us in our family could ever measure up to the impossible standards in this fundamentalist world.”

Newton’s Third Law of Motion tells us that for every action, there’s an equal and opposite reaction. This guy spent his early twenties fighting off guilt and shame, and the next decade after that using the debris of his childhood to build a successful life for himself and his family. [Read more]

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