After separating from my abusive husband, I made it clear that I would not live with him unless and until his attitudes and behaviors changed dramatically. After a couple of weeks of listening to him whine and complain about my unrealistic expectations, he suddenly entered Alcoholics Anonymous and seemingly found the will to turn his life around.
His overall demeanor took on a hue that appeared consistent with heartfelt repentance and a drastic change of character. It seemed he had miraculously been awakened from his toxic stupor. The nasty man was all at once the happy-go-lucky guy who forthrightly apologized to me and our kids for his hostile behaviors and failings. Suddenly he wanted to play with our kids at the park and seemed more sensitive and respectful toward me. He spoke in positive, glowing terms and seemed wholly committed to the follow-through to save our marriage and our family. The man passionately assured me that our dark days were behind us. Continue reading “I’m Trying”: Setting the Stage for Failure
“You have heard it was said,‘love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I say love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you.” Matthew 5:43-44
This is a powerful verse that is often used to compel victims of abuse to remain with their abusers. The pretense is that no matter how we are treated or by whom, we are called to love and pray for those who persecute us.
But is that what Jesus is really saying? I don’t think so. Continue reading Love Your Enemies?
“For You have been a defense for the helpless, a defense for the needy in his distress, a refuge from the storm, a shade from the heat; For the breath of the ruthless is like a rain storm against a wall.” Isaiah 25:3
There are days when it feels as though the battle is never-ending, when assaults on your reputation and your credibility are coming at you from every side. So know this: No matter what your enemies and detractors say, you have a Defender who knows and sees all. You can be strengthened by the knowledge that you are never alone as you walk this often lonely journey.
Even clinging to that truth, though, there will be times when you will thirst for a word of compassion and validation from someone with skin on.
Continue reading The Temptation to Defend Yourself to Friends and Children
February 4, 2015 Contact: Cindy Burrell FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Hurtbylove.com
Author and abuse survivor Cindy Burrell is pleased to announce the release of the second editions of “Why Is He So Mean to Me?” and “God Is My Witness: Making a Case for Biblical Divorce.”
Burrell, the co-owner of Hurtbylove.com stated, “We have been successful in reaching thousands upon thousands of women in 42 countries since we hit the internet with the release of “Why Is He So Mean to Me?” five years ago. We are eager to help thousands more to understand abuse – and find healing.
Continue reading Second Editions of “Why Is He So Mean to Me?” and “God Is My Witness: Making a Case for Biblical Divorce,” Are Now Available
“Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil; cling to what is good.”
As we seek to understand God’s way for us in the midst of an abusive relationship, there are times when the Scriptures can provoke us to doubt or fear the heart of the One who loves us. The Scriptures indeed acknowledge that there are times when enduring harsh or inappropriate treatment serves as a powerful testimony and can bring glory to God. But too often we are inclined to believe that, if we are suffering in marriage, we are called to pray, perfect ourselves to attempt to earn our abuser’s love, and hope for change.
But what if a hostile husband’s behaviors have nothing to do with a lack of understanding, a difficult phase in his life, his struggles at work, or a traumatic childhood? What if the one with whom you share your bed is an utterly self-absorbed, abusive – even wicked – man? What if he knows exactly what he is doing, doesn’t care if you are hurting and uses your faith to keep you bound to him? Does your commitment to sacrifice yourself to his will minister to him or merely enable him? If it is the latter, you must ask yourself: Is that what God would have me do?
Continue reading Suffering Love: A Redemptive Force or an Enabling One?