I was so overtaken by my own experiences and personal encounters with clients and friends; I wanted to speak to these outrageous, and egregious behaviors of preachers, politicians, teachers and others who hold high powered positions.
If this sounds a bit emotional; well it is! When I see support go out for people who have violated; pushes my buttons in a major way. Maybe you stay cool when you hear a man who has served in office for years or a pastor/priest violating the office through seduction and betrayal; but not I! If Jesus could go through the temple with a scourging cord; I wonder what He thinks about such acts of violence?
How many of us have either been or have known someone who is a victim of sexual abuse? The majority I would say are women and children.
Sadly, there is still a “shame and guilt complex” on the side of the victim when exposing such secrets. Children are threatened with acts of harm toward themselves and/or family members if they tell. Women are threatened with a loss of job or position.
In recent years there has been more and more women and men who are coming forth with their stories of being victimized by these predators.
A predator is anyone who violates the person of another. It does not exempt preachers or politicians. Because these individuals are in such powerful positions; we have a right to hold them to a higher standard. This is one of those sensitive areas for me.
I have been a pastor, an elementary school counselor, an elementary school teacher, a special education liaison, a mobile therapist and behavior specialist; I think I have an opinion here.
When most people hear the words “Sexual Abuse,” they tend to run and hide. The openly discuss such things seem to be taboo in most cultures. We must change that, and change that now. Children are told to keep it secret; thereby creating a plethora of psychological and emotional issues. Issues, that they take into the world exploding at a time when no one expected.
Sexual abuse must be exposed and expelled from our society. I think we have a right to expect more from our leaders. They should be held accountable for their acts of violence. When are we going to realize men do not own a woman’s body. Our bodies belong to God, and they should be respected not only by ourselves but those around us.
When the law allows a celebrity to walk away; it sends the message to the world that as long as you have enough money and enough influence you can walk free after committing such a shameful act.
I am venting a bit here, but that is okay. I am fed up with it being okay and we as Christian think we can sit back and let God take over this world. God gave man dominion and Jesus took it back from the thief who stole it. Now we have it back. What are we going to do with it? Leave it to the government to fix?
I think not. I think we need to think about who we vote for. I think we need to pray for who we want in office. I think we need to stand together as human beings realizing that it is okay to disagree on somethings, however, we must all agree to keep our children safe. We must agree that stronger laws are needed to support abused and battered women. Stronger punishment for rapist and child molester should be implemented. I make no apologies for this stand. At least, I am taking one.
What is your stand? What is your opinion? Will you make a difference? Will you stand?
While someone can be there for others from time to time, this can also be something that consumes their whole life. It is then not going to matter what is taking place in their life, as they will be only too happy to put it to one side.
Due to this, it can be normal for one to ignore their own needs and feelings and to be there for others instead. One can then be in a position where they will rarely achieve anything, or they might able to achieve things when they are not there for others.
But no matter whether one can relate to the former or the latter, they are not going to be able to make as much progress as they could if they focused on their own needs. It is then going to be similar to one focusing on about ten things at once; their energy is going to be scattered.
Even so, there is going to be no reason for one to come to the conclusion that they have the wrong approach. And the main reason for this is that this kind of behavior is often rewarded in today’s world.
One is likely to surrounded by people who tell them that they are ‘selfless’ human beings and that more people should be like them. The kind of feedback that they receive can then allow them to feel good about themselves.
Along with this, one could see themselves as being better than people who only think about their own needs. Thus, one can believe that they are morally superior and they can then look down on certain people.
What this can then show is that one believes that there are only two options: either they ignore their needs or they ignore everyone else’s needs. The people who support their behavior can also identify with the same outlook.
It might then be accurate to say that they believe that there is something wrong with their needs, and this is why they can’t fulfill them in a healthy manner. Through feeling this way, it is to be expected that they will have the tendency to ignore them.
However, even though they view their needs in this way, it doesn’t mean that they realize this. This is something that can take place at a deeper level, and one can then end up reacting to what is taking place just outside of their awareness.
Out of Touch
What is taking place at a deeper level is then going to be what is controlling their behavior, and in order to avoid this pain, one will want to be there for others. The reason for this is that doing so will allow them to regulate how they feel.
In this sense, one is getting something through being there for others, but this is likely to go unnoticed. And not only can one be oblivious to this, so can the people who they are trying to help.
Still, it is not just that one only wants to be there for others as a way to avoid feeling bad about their own needs; there is also another factor involved. More importantly, one will hope that this will allow them to get their needs met.
One can believe that if they are there for others, it will mean that these people will be there for them. The trouble is that the people they help are unlikely to be able to read minds, and these people can be caught up with their own needs.
There can then be the odd moment when one will be able to get their needs met, but this is likely to be the exception as opposed to the rule. Naturally, it can then be common for one to feel angry about what is taking place.
Yet as they don’t feel comfortable with their own needs, there is a greater chance of them hiding how they feel. Or if they don’t hide it, they could end up taking their pain out on someone else; with this being someone they believe they can walk over, for instance.
What this can do is enable them to protect the image that they have created, and this is not going to be the case if they were to get angry at the people who are only too happy to take from them. But if they were to get angry at them, they could soon feel guilty and ashamed and this may cause them to apologize.
Or if they don’t do this, they could end up doing something for them as a way to deal with how they feel. And when it comes to how people see them, they could say that they have a lot of empathy.
This is not going to be much of a surprise, and this comes down to the fact that one is able to be there for others. Therefore, if they couldn’t put themselves in other people shoes, they wouldn’t be reaching out to them.
Instead, they would just be focused on their own needs and overlooking other people needs. It could then be said that it is clear that they have empathy, and they could also be seen as having compassion.
Having said that, it doesn’t mean that the people one tries to rescue are only exposed to this kind of behavior. In fact, they could find that there are times when one behaves in a completely different manner.
If they do what one wants, they could find that they are happy to offer their understanding, but if they are not willing to do this, they could find that one ends up being critical and judgemental. These people could then begin to wonder how they could be warm one moment and cold the next.
What this can show is that they are not displaying real empathy, and the only reason they have moments when they act this way is to get their needs met. It is then the same as how someone can be nice when they want something and they can end up being rude when they don’t.
The understanding that they show is going to be a way for them to gain other peoples approval. And as people are generally going to respond well to this kind of behavior, it is going to make it easy for them to influence others.
When it comes to who they attract into their life, they are typically going to be people who have the same level of emotional development as they do. If one wants to experience life differently, it will be important for them to look into why they don’t feel comfortable with their own needs.
This can be due to how their caregivers responded to their needs, and this may have been a time when their needs were generally ignored. The assistance of a therapist may be needed here.
How many times have you stayed awake at night wondering about your future? The vision of all of the bad things that may happen kept you awake all night only to discover your worries were unfounded.
As a child of God, I can tell you that worry is one of the greatest stressors in life. It will destroy your dreams and keep you paralyzed. You find yourself not being able to make a decision because you are afraid something might happen. The truth is something is going to happen whether you move or not. The issue is what?
There is a story in the Bible of lepers who according to the law could not go into the city for they were considered unclean and needed to remain outside of the city for the protection of the people. They were isolated and alone. They had each other, but they were all in the same boat.
One day the city from which most of them had come was under attack. They knew if the city was destroyed there was no chance of them getting food. They were left outside of the city with no hope of life. Then the moment came, one of them had an “A-ha!” moment.
If we go into the city we might die, but if we remain here, we will surely die. They collectively decided they would take a chance on going into the city. Once they arrived there, they noticed that the enemies were gone and the was city was left open. There and there was plenty of food there for them.
The moral of the story is; if you stay where you are, what will your future look like? If you pushed past your paralysis of analysis, fear, and anxiety you might reach your destiny.
Remember what you learned as a child? “You will never know until you try.”
You will never know until you MOVE!
Are you one of those people who freeze up when it comes time to deal with difficult issues?
Having difficult conversations is like asking some people to eat poison. They would rather avoid confrontations all together.
There have been times in my life I wish people would have just known what I was thinking. That way, I would not have to say anything to them about whatever was troubling me. Once I would finally get the nerve to say something it would not sound like I wanted it to, and I would feel just plain silly.
What I decided to do was to realize I was doing both that person and myself a disservice by not speaking up. They would assume our relationship was one place when it was actually another. I would be a hypocrite as a “friend” by not sharing what I really thought.
Those days are long gone, and I learned that I owed it to my friends, family and acquaintances to be honest and forthcoming in my dealings. Granted, when I first started this new found form of communication; I broke a lot of rules of engagement. I would say things at the wrong time and would feel horrible afterwards. I would quickly come under condemnation and would wrestle with that demon all night.
I kept reading the Bible and praying that God would help me to break free of things that seem to have me so bound, like fear and anxiety issues that would keep me from speaking up and out. I wanted to be at peace with “me.” I wanted to be at peace with everyone else and discover what it feel like to truly let love flow through me even when I had to confront someone in difficult times.
There is something so powerful in being transparent and authentic. It is the place many people wish they could move into and envy those who have. When we become transparent and authentic we open the windows of Heaven to meet us at the point of our need for peace and joy. The world begins to look at our lives through different lenses because our lives represent the one they wished for.
Who do you need to confront? What areas of your life do you think will change once you confront them? Are you willing to be laughed at? Are you prepared to be rejected? You may very well be, and that too is part of your being able to be free. You will finally learn what it mean to “Care Enough To Confront.”
What happens when you say something you did not mean to say? How many times have you said something to later regret?
Every word we speak has meaning. There is literally no such thing as “empty words.” The Bible teaches us that a man is snared by the words of his mouth (Proverbs 6:2). What we say can trap, bind and slay us. What we say can either help us get a position or destroy ever opportunity for promotion .
Life and death are in the power of the tongue (Proverbs 18:21). Blessings and cursing are created by the words we speak (James 3:10). The words we speak are the creative force which directs our path in life.
There is no such thing as “joking” about one’s life. The enemy of the mind hears those words and uses them aganist us. Anyone who doubts this is certainly caught in the great web of deception in “Opening Their Big Mouth!”
The power of our words is not a new thought. It has been around since the beginning of time. When God created the Heavens and the Earth; He spoke them into existence. The Bible teaches us that the worlds were formed by the Word of God. This my friends, is our pattern. When we speak our “world” is formed. The everyday walking, waking, talking, living world is formed around us. We are powerful!
The thing we have to learn, is how to use this power for our good and not for our destruction.
Let’s begin with the book of James.
James Chapter 3 is a remarkable ancient text found in the Bible. I like reading the Bible it holds great wisdom and understanding Anyone who has come acquainted with the Bible will understand the principals I am about to outline here.
First let’s look at this scripture in James Chapter 3
Taming the Tongue
1My brethren, be not many masters, knowing that we shall receive the greater condemnation. 2For in many things we offend all. If any man offend not in word, the same is a perfect man, and able also to bridle the whole body. 3Behold, we put bits in the horses’ mouths, that they may obey us; and we turn about their whole body. 4Behold also the ships, which though they be so great, and are driven of fierce winds, yet are they turned about with a very small helm, whithersoever the governor listeth. 5Even so the tongue is a little member, and boasteth great things. Behold, how great a matter a little fire kindleth! 6And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity: so is the tongue among our members, that it defileth the whole body, and setteth on fire the course of nature; and it is set on fire of hell. 7For every kind of beasts, and of birds, and of serpents, and of things in the sea, is tamed, and hath been tamed of mankind: 8But the tongue can no man tame; it is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison. 9Therewith bless we God, even the Father; and therewith curse we men, which are made after the similitude of God. 10Out of the same mouth proceedeth blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not so to be. 11Doth a fountain send forth at the same place sweet water and bitter? 12Can the fig tree, my brethren, bear olive berries? either a vine, figs? so can no fountain both yield salt water and fresh.
Translated into 21st Century English
The tongue is wild and unruly and anyone who can tame it is genius. The tongue guides are life like the rudder on ship it will take us places we may not want to go. We must be careful what we say or we will end up someplace we do not want to be.
If we use our tongue to build our lives, our tongue will be the instrument to assist us is building our destiny and purpose.
James seems to have a revelation on the tongue and its power. Since God spoke the worlds into existence we can begin today to speak the world we want into existence.
What are you saying about your life? What are you speaking over others? Do you speak negative words about your life? Think about the results you are getting.
You are truly having what you say.
Mark 11:22 -24
22 “Have faith in God,” Jesus answered. 23 “Truly[a] I tell you, if anyone says to this mountain, ‘Go, throw yourself into the sea,’ and does not doubt in their heart but believes that what they say will happen, it will be done for them. 24 Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.
If you don’t like what you are having, change what you are saying.
Shutting your BIG mouth is not safe. Changing what you say is.
Start practicing positive words over your life and over others. Always speak what you want and not what you don’t want.
Your life will begin to take on the shape God intended for it to.
Understand the power of your words and begin to use them daily to transform your life one positive word at a time.
True Wisdom from Above
13Who is a wise man and endued with knowledge among you? let him shew out of a good conversation his works with meekness of wisdom. 14But if ye have bitter envying and strife in your hearts, glory not, and lie not against the truth. 15This wisdom descendeth not from above, but is earthly, sensual, devilish. 16For where envying and strife is, there is confusion and every evil work. 17But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be intreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy. 18And the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace of them that make peace.
When we are speaking words of peace and comfort to ourselves we can do the same for others. Remember this, we cannot give away what we do not possess. We must become responsible citizens of our own words. Executing goodness everywhere at all times.
We can change our world with our words. When we open our mouths to speak let it be because we truly have something amazing coming out of it.