Don't Wait for Permission to do What God Has Anointed You to Do

Don't Wait for Permission to do What God Has Anointed You to Do
Do not wait for the permission of a person or institution to do what God anointed you to do.

I look back over the past decade and I am in awe of all of the experiences I have had, all of the ministry I have been a part of, all of the people I have met.

If I was still a part of the abusive religious systems that controlled me, I would not have stepped out to do any of those things.

I was expected to ask permission from my leaders each time I felt led to do…anything. And, more times than not, I was told I could not or should not do the thing I felt passionately about doing. Then, a month or two later, that same leader released someone else to do the very thing that I felt God was asking me to do.


I prayed with people and was told that I did it wrong.


I led worship and was told I was too emotional (and was eventually stripped of my role as a worship leader).


I signed up to go on a mission trip and was rejected because I might “go there and be a basket case like I was here.” (This was mere months after disclosure of the worst betrayal of my life. That same institution offered me no help, but was quick to blame/shame me for another’s sin.)


I have many other incidents that I could share, but will not now.

If I was still part of that system, I WOULD PROBABLY BE DEAD.

If not physically, definitely spiritually.

Now, I am FREE to live, move and have my being.

I am FREE to see needs and make the connections to resources, without waiting for someone else to decide if the recipients was “worthy.”

Oh, yes!

The last straw?

The thing that FINALLY pushed me out of that abusive, patriarchal, misogynistic place?

When a dear friend was so sick and I asked if we could bless her.

The response?

“She needs to be alone so she can find God.”

What the actual HELL????

I’m grateful for the remnant of godly shepherds who protect their flocks from wolves.

Sadly, they are few and far between.

I am grateful to Abba Father for continuing to speak to my heart and give me vision and strategies for loving the ones that churches have shunned.

I am grateful for faithful friends who speak His plans, purposes and call forth His destiny in my life when so many tried to shut me up.

And, now, I will take every chance I get to be a voice for survivors.

He rescued me from the fire and I will be one of His firefighters who goes back to help pull others from the flames.

His permission, approval and covering is all I need. 🤍

The Truth About Survivors

The Truth About Survivors
“I haven’t met a lady here who isn’t kind.”

This was a comment made by a sweet soul sister I met on Sunday morning, at the close of the Called to Peace Ministries He Makes All Things New Retreat.

Such profound truth.

For years, even decades, we were told that we were the problem.

We were mistreated, dishonored, abused, shamed and blamed.

But, the truth is that abusers choose victims because of their strengths, not their weaknesses.

Many of are servers.





We are forgiving, empathetic, long-suffering, self-sacrificing, optimistic, compassionate, creative and resourceful.

Always hoping and waiting and praying.

Almost to the point of death.

I am so thankful for TRUTH.

TRUTH sets us FREE.

We are beloved.









We are a mighty army, rising up.

We’ve come through the fire and we will keep carrying back buckets for those who are still engulfed in the flames.

If you are a woman who is rebuilding your life after abuse, join us on Facebook at Held & Healed. Our community is growing and we are getting ready to start a book club and planning our first annual retreat. 

I Stand for Truth, Righteousness and Justice

I Stand for Truth, Righteousness and Justice
“I’m not here to make friends. I’m here to make a difference.”
 This week I heard the testimony of a tattoo artist who uses his God-given skills and artistic abilities to help human trafficking survivors cover up their branding tats. What an amazing ministry. He is the hands, feet and heart of Jesus as he ministers to a practical and personal need.
 I’ve said these words, “I’m not here to make friends with abusers.” If someone is abusive and uses power and control to manipulate, dominate and destroy others, I am not here to make them feel comfortable.
 I’m here to be a voice for the one who have been told to shut up.
 I’m here to speak worth over the one who has been told she’s worthless.
 I’m here to call out the strengths I see in the one who feels weak.
 I’m here to illuminate a path to safety for those who live in fear.
 I’m here to say “ENOUGH IS ENOUGH” to abusers.
 To abusers who are mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers, pastors, employers, teachers, counselors, coaches…I say, “ENOUGH IS ENOUGH.” 

Thankfully, I am not alone. God spoke out against abuse long before I ever did. He called His followers to do the same.
 “Open your mouth, judge righteously, defend the rights of the poor and needy.” Proverbs 31:9
 “Is not this the fast that I choose: to loose the bonds of wickedness, to undo the straps of the yoke, to let the oppressed go free, to break every yoke?” Isaiah 58:6-7
 “Learn to do good; seek justice, correct oppression; bring justice to the fatherless, plead the widow’s case.” Isaiah 1:17
 “Thus says the Lord: Do justice and righteousness and deliver from the hand of the oppressor him who has been robbed.” Jeremiah 22:3
 “Righteousness and justice are the foundation of your throne; love and faithfulness go before you.” Psalm 89:14

"But let justice roll on like a river, righteousness like a never-failing stream." Amos 5:24
 There are many verses in the Bible about taking a standing up for the abused. There are many verses in the Bible about up against abusers (wolves). If we are true Christians (by definition: “followers of Christ”), we cannot stand by idly and do nothing.
 I recently took a stand against heinous abuse that was done by a world-famous leader in the faith community. I’ve heard many say that he did so much good for the Kingdom, that the good outweighed the bad. I beg to differ. The man committed vile, sexual acts against women and then stood on platforms across the globe and defended the Bible.
 Is there anything more grievous in God’s eyes than spiritual abuse? Spiritual abuse weaponizes God and His Word to control, manipulate and prey upon others. After taking a public stand on this matter, I was told to “make sure my love shows more than my hate.” I replied, “I hate evil. I love the women who are bravely walking out of the fire.”
 God’s Word tells us to hate evil. Why is it so common, especially within evangelical faith communities, for people to be uncomfortable with someone sharing about abuse, while not being bothered by witnessing abusive behaviors?
 About two years ago, shared some of my story with a pastor, summarizing decades of domestic abuse, emotional abuse, mental abuse and spiritual abuse. When I asked about his church’s stance on the subject, I was told, “The abuser and the abused are welcome here.” All kinds of alarms went off in my head. I have now completed a year’s certification in a victim advocacy, and I understand how unbiblical that statement was.
 It’s time to take a stand for righteous, truth and justice.
 Twelve years ago, I became aware of the realities of human trafficking. As I began to speak up and educate others about this, I remember the looks and the responses. When I handed a church person a flyer to invite them to a screening of a documentary that exposed trafficking across the world, they recoiled as if I was handing them an STD. Now, I am finding a similar response when I share about the realities of domestic violence and spiritual abuse in the church community.
 Statistics say 25-30% of women are suffering from domestic violence, but my gut (and my heart) says that number is way too low. I believe that 50-75% of women within the church walls are suffering from various forms of domestic violence. This is fueled by twisting scriptures, shaming women, blaming wives for their husbands’ sins, misogyny and patriarchy which are common in many evangelical circles. If you are not familiar with the Power and Control Wheel, I urge you to familiarize yourself with it now.
 Abuse is so much more than bruises and broken bones. Abusers may use intimidation, emotional abuse, isolation, minimizing, denying, bullying, parental alienation, male privilege, spousal rape, economic abuse or threats to control their victims. I will be writing about each of these elements soon, because so many women are experiencing abuse every single day and they do not even know it.
 Until then, I welcome women who are victims and women who want to be advocates for victims to join us at 
Held & Healed: Christian Women Rebuilding After Abuse. In the group, I share resources that have helped me on my healing journey. There is a mighty army of survivors, advocates, counselors and leaders rising up. While my heart bleeds that no one was there for me twenty years ago, I am determined to be for others what I needed someone to be for me. That is redemption and I will live my life being a voice for truth, righteousness and justice. 

That’s Not God: Exposing Spiritual Abuse and Calling the Broken-hearted Back to the Father

That’s Not God: Exposing Spiritual Abuse and Calling the Broken-hearted Back to the Father
That’s Not God: Exposing Spiritual Abuse and Calling the Broken-hearted Back to the Father’s Heart 

(I have an alternate title that I hope I will be brave enough to use when the time comes to publish this as a collection, but I’m not that brave just yet.)


I endured spiritual abuse for nearly four decades. Long before I even knew it had a name, long before I could define spiritual narcissism, long before I knew I had worth, long before I had courage to speak against such (insert word here that may or may not be in my book title and is often abbreviated with the letters B and S).

As a teen, I watched as many of my friends walked away from church and God. They were wounded and the church treated them as lepers, talked about them behind closed doors, shunned them publicly and falsely accused them of things they did not do. This particular institution called people to confess their deepest/darkest secrets, then used that information against these vulnerable souls. I would now call this spiritual blackmail. THAT’S NOT GOD.

Mere men played the role that only God should assume and thirty years later, most of those who were abused are still carrying deep scars. Forgiveness was not sought by the leaders who wounded them. I remember sitting in one pastor’s office, begging him to seek out one who was hurt, and he just smiled at me and sent me on my way. The person I was advocating for is still one of the most heart-broken souls I know. I often wonder what might be different if that leader had confessed the heinous sin committed and sought forgiveness.

I was brainwashed and under a spell. I would now call it a cult. There were so many expectations, most were “unwritten rules.” The focus was on public appearances and the lack of care for what went on behind closed doors was unbiblical and negligent. THAT’S NOT GOD.

I once believed I was called to be a bridge back to an institution, I now understand how warped and twisted that way of thinking was. Now, I accept a much higher calling. I am here to call the broken, weary, misunderstood and condemned back to the heart of Father God.

I recently heard the story of a young woman who was sexually molested by her grandfather. After he did unmentionable things to her, he would sing “How Great Thou Art.” That song, written to declare the goodness and faithfulness of God, became a trigger that set her off and evoked emotional and physical reactions for years to come. THAT’S NOT GOD.

I am here to call out the BS that goes on in His name and invite others to consider how broken His heart is each time someone uses His name and His Word to beat up, maim, condemn or curse another human being. I stand on God’s word and His character. He is good, faithful, loving, merciful, gracious and compassionate. He alone is the reason that I am still alive. He stood with me in the fires and carried me through the floods. While many turn from Him because of the abuse suffered in His name, I was able to run into His arms for safety and refuge. I am here to testify to His goodness. I am here to extend love to all who are weary, broken-hearted, and disillusioned.

I will not be naming names of individuals or institutions. In this collection, I will be sharing anonymous stories of brave souls who have been wounded by the very ones who were supposed to protect, nurture, love and honor them. If you have a story to share, feel free to message me. I will listen and help you see how grieved God’s heart is by the abuse you have endured.

I know this topic makes many feel uncomfortable. If you are a leader and you have used your position of power to willfully wound others, you will not like this message. If you are a leader and you have unintentionally hurt others, I pray this message will encourage you to seek forgiveness from them and move toward reconciliation. No one is perfect. But, there are many who are knowingly abusing those in their care and I say, “ENOUGH IS ENOUGH.”

I pray that victims of spiritual abuse will feel validated, seen, heard and loved. That is the reason I am stepping out to begin this project. Time is short. We do not know what tomorrow holds. I am desperate to see hearts restored to the Father. I raise my voice for the ones who have been wounded in the deepest crevices of their souls. I call you back to the heart of the One who saw it all, heard it all and whose heart broke when your heart broke.

When you were abused, rejected and cast out by men and women who used His word to beat you up, THAT’S NOT GOD.

When you were sexually abused by a pastor or youth pastor, THAT’S NOT GOD.

When that abuse was hidden and covered up by other leaders in your church, THAT’S NOT GOD.

When you were told if you wanted to honor God, you would return to your adulterous and abusive spouse, THAT’S NOT GOD.

When your abuser was coddled and embraced and you were blamed for his sin, THAT’S NOT GOD.

When you were set aside because you were physically sick and not cared for by the church you served for years, THAT’S NOT GOD.

When you were overlooked for a ministry you were qualified for because you didn’t have a college degree, THAT’S NOT GOD.

When you were taught that abortion is wrong but you faced excommunication for a pregnancy before marriage, THAT’S NOT GOD.

When you were rejected by the “in crowd,” at church, THAT’S NOT GOD.

When you were judged for battling mental illness but never pointed to healing resources, THAT’S NOT GOD.

This collection may take some time to write and I thank each one who is willing to share their story to empower others. I invite you on this journey back to the heart of the perfect and loving Father. His arms are open wide.

His heart is revealed here: “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” Matthew 11:25-28 (NIV)

If you are a Christian woman who is rebuilding your life after abuse, join us here

Who Do You Listen To?

Who Do You Listen To?
Learning to tune out the voice of the enemy is not an easy thing to do, but it is absolutely vital if we are going to grow, heal, thrive, flourish and walk in true freedom.

There are so many voices screaming at us every day...inside our minds, our own thoughts can trip us up. Externally, we listen to the voices of so many others.

I am learning to weigh the voices against the following criteria:

Does this person love me?

Does this person love God and want His best for me?

Do his/her words line up with God’s Word?

Does this person display good fruit in his/her life—love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, faithfulness, self-control?

If someone does not love you, is unwilling to treat you with honor and respect, disregards God’s ways and His word and bears stinky, rotten fruit...then, you should not allow him/her to get in your head (and heart) space.

Easier said than done, but we can choose hope, life, freedom and release!