Good morning my friends!
Coach LeAnne here! Fall has arrived in Phoenix! My feeders are still actively nourishing the local hummingbirds, and my hanging flowers are in full bloom as they sway on the back patio. I grew up in Minnesota, moved to California at 19 years of age, and have been out west ever since- I do not miss the cold, the ice, or the gray days… I often share that I have learned that I am indeed a solar-powered human! The sunshine feeds my soul and spirit in ways some of you may understand. To our Midwest friends and followers- I send you warm love and sunshine!
As I journey this life and share conversations with amazing humans, I have become acutely aware of how many of us are longing for deep and real relationships that include the freedom to share what matters most. Relationships. The more I connect, coach, serve and listen in, the more impassioned I become to raise awareness and advocate for those whose voices have been silenced by fear, sin, and secrets.
Betrayal, abandonment, pornography, rejection, addiction, and emotional abuse is impacting our culture in ways that are destructive and paralyzing. Perhaps like me, you have made or been on the receiving end of a phone call or text message from a friend, coworker, or family member who is navigating a very challenging or destructive relationship. Many have been awakened to the shocking ways that domestic violence can show up in a relationship. These relationship truths have been a wake-up call for many. The time is now to say NO MORE ABUSE! Today, we will lean in and share some thoughts together. Thank you for joining us here in this space.
I know every situation is different but where can our men find help? There is faith-based treatment for alcoholism, drug abuse, and pornography addiction but what about verbal and emotional abuse? What are we to ask them to do? Where can men find help? Who is working on this with the men?
Thank you for your question. I am sure many here in this community have the same ask. You are so right when you say every situation is different. There are resources for the addictions you mentioned. No matter what the resource, and how effective it can be, the man has got to want help. The abuser must want to change. He must be committed and not coerced to seek help, support, and accountability. He must see his healing journey all the way to wholeness.
Verbal and emotional abuse in families, marriages, and in the workplace is nothing new. The Bible does not use the term “verbal abuse,” but it has a lot to say about the power of our words. Proverbs 18:21 states- The tongue has the power of life and death”. Verbal abuse is a weapon in the arsenal of emotional abuse. The ultimate goal is to gain control over someone in order to establish dominance in a relationship.
Verbal abuse is not the occasional blow-up after a bad day or a lack of self-control in the middle of tense moments. Verbal abuse is a pattern of angry outbursts, ridicule, name-calling, mockery, shaming, word-twisting, and more. This abuse robs another human of psychological safety. It is a habit. It is sinful. It most likely will not go away on its own and can escalate into physical abuse. Read that again, please. The cycle of abuse is destructive.
Abusive language has deep and long-lasting effects that can “pierce like a sword”. Proverbs 12:18. The words we speak reflect what is going on inside of us. Luke 6:45 says “A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart, The mouth speaks what the heart is full of.” There will need to be a heart change.
You wonder- what can we ask the abuser to do? We can ask them to stop the abuse. We can ask them to get help. The choice is theirs. Some will seek help. Many will not. Help is available. Abusers need to own their abuse in order to break the cycle. They must want to receive help to recover. There are safe places to do just that. Ministries such as Men of Peace, have programs and resources to walk with men who desire to recover. My friend and colleague, Pastor Chris Moles has created this program.
The Men of Peace Self-Paced Course is the compilation of all of Chris Moles’ past Men of Peace coaching content plus brand-new material. This course includes more than fifty pre-recorded video/audio lessons spanning ten-course modules and a corresponding PDF workbook. This course will walk men through the three-fold Men of Peace process of Information, Transformation, and Reformation.
This program educates men who are ready to take ownership of their abusive behaviors and surrender themselves fully to the Lord in lasting repentance. Chris Moles is the author of The Heart of Domestic Abuse: Gospel Solutions for Men Who Use Control and Violence in the Home,
Only Jesus can heal the wounds left by abuse. Many hurting people are waiting for the abuser to repair the damage he has caused. While it is good for the abuser to take responsibility and make amends to those he hurt, it is only Jesus who can heal the wounds. He is very aware of the hurt and the suffering. He promises to comfort, vindicate, and heal. My friend, please do not wait for the abuser in your life to heal for you to rise to wholeness yourself.
We cannot always choose the music life pays for us, but we can choose how we will dance and sing.
Abuse is a small word that represents a huge spectrum and many complexities. Everyone deserves a healthy relationship. If you are experiencing verbal, physical, sexual, emotional, or other violence in your home, please reach out for help and support. No one ever deserves to experience abuse.
Abuse is a learned behavior. Some people witness it in their own families growing up; others learn it slowly from friends, popular culture, or structural inequities throughout our society. No matter where they develop such behaviors, those who commit abusive acts make a choice in doing so — they also could choose not to. Regardless of the circumstances of your relationship or past, no one ever deserves to be abused and you’re never responsible for your partner’s abusive actions.
Feelings of confusion, fear, or anger are normal responses to abuse, but they may also make you feel isolated or like no one will understand. Remember that expert advocates from The National Domestic Violence Hotline are available 24/7 to talk through your situation and help you build a safety plan tailored to your circumstances.
My friends, what other resources and supports and encouragement could you offer up to our sister here?
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