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The Truth About Weinstein, Spacey, Moore, and High Profile Accusations of Sexual Abuse

November 16, 2017

WARNING:  If you are a victim of sexual abuse, this post could be very painful for you.  Take caution before you read it and seek help if it stirs up old wounds.

Can you imagine the damage?  A child.  A teenager.  A female in a workplace.  Confused.  Powerless.  Manipulated.  Perhaps there’s a fight.  Perhaps they are too afraid to fight.  They are touched and made to touch.  They are directed.  They are lured through affirmation.  They are shamed and threatened.

What are the emotional scars left by sexual violation?  Feelings of being tainted or stained.  Viewing sex as trauma.  Viewing sex as useful to get what you want.  Viewing sex as a means to gain affirmation.  Gender confusion.  The decimation of the ability to trust or receive love without strings.  Wondering where God is, if He cares, and if He, too, is an abusive authority figure.  Can Jesus still love me?

If you are one of the 1 in 4 girls or 1 in 6 boys who have been molested or raped, then you don’t have to imagine.  You’ve experienced it.  For the rest of us, we MUST, out of biblical, moral obligation, imagine it and take up the justice of God to offer advocacy, healing, and love to those who have been victimized.

The recent string of public figures accused of using their power for sexual gain—often doing so with those underage—seems like a shocking revelation to our culture.  I am most bothered by the acts themselves and the damage they do to our most defenseless and powerless image of God-bearing neighbors.  But there’s something else that bothers me:  THE SHOCK.  We can’t believe this has happened and that astounds me.

I’m outraged, but I am not shocked.  Over the last 20+ years, I have had the sacred pastoral task of holding the tender stories of courageous people as they entrust me to listen to their personal hell that is sexual abuse.  I have heard so many stories of sexual violation over these years that I’ve lost count—and not just by females, but by quite a few men too.  What strikes me is that these are the few that somehow found enough courage to open the festering wound that marks them with undeserved shame.  How many victims are out there carrying this daily heavy burden all alone and too afraid or ashamed to seek refuge?

If you think these public stories of sexual abuse are isolated incidents among older, male politicians and celebrities then you are dead wrong.  Sexual predators can be men or women.  They can be as young as late elementary (often confused and repeating the abuse they received) and old enough to be on their death beds.  They can be strangers, but often are friends and family members.  Those aren’t guesses for me.  They are real stories told by real people, most of whom feel voiceless and are the reason I am writing this in the first place.

Sexual abuse is a major contributor to every social ill you can imagine:  incarceration, divorce, substance abuse, sex addiction, depression/mental illness, and suicide.  It’s not only destroying individual lives, it is killing our world.

God has lead me to several personal responses in light of the prevalence of sexual abuse:

  1. I must repent of my own objectification of the opposite sex.
  2. I must be a person of conviction who denounces sexual abuse as evil no matter what social or political “team” the abuser is on.
  3. I must be ready to call sexual predators to repentance and find blunt and gracious ways to help them change.
  4. I must be ready to build a church culture that invites victims to a safe place of healing with no shame and complete empathy.

The danger of our shock is that it might lead us to the conclusion that this is a problem out there—somewhere in the strange fantasy worlds that are Hollywood and Washington D.C.  If that’s our conclusion, then we will leave millions of voiceless people in a hopeless state because neither they nor their abuser are famous enough for anyone to care.  This isn’t a celebrity problem.  It’s a community problem… school problem… church problem… family problem… and above all else, a sin problem.

Our surprise as a culture over these events tells me just how locked away and protected these secrets are.  To save face, compliant people have built a system of secrecy that imprisons not only the victim but their entire family or organization.  That is part of the reason we are shocked and why we think these are rare cases.  But if you would have heard the stories I have heard, you would know that sexual abuse is, unfortunately, the norm in our world.

So be outraged.  Be motivated to learn the truth about sexual abuse.  Be ready to be an advocate.  But don’t be shocked.  The prevalence of sexual abuse isn’t a swell, it’s a tidal wave.

7 Comments leave one →
  1. November 16, 2017 10:48 am

    Very well said. I have been following the Judge Moore story very closely since he professes strong Christian values. My sense is this should be an issue of repentance and forgiveness. That doesn’t seem to be where it is heading.

    Be blessed. God is with you.

  2. November 16, 2017 10:50 am

    Reblogged this on Quotes, thoughts and musings and commented:
    Well worth reading. As followers of Jesus, we must be outraged at the revelations. I believe Jesus would unequivocally take the side of the women.

  3. Gloria Joyce permalink
    November 16, 2017 11:21 am

    This is by far the best, most comprehensive, most understanding, most compassionate article I’ve ever read about this subject!!! Every word you wrote is exactly on target. I will be praying for you as always, Love you, Mom

  4. J.D. cruce permalink
    November 16, 2017 1:24 pm

    bless you for addressing this issiue and the insight you have provided J.D. Cruce

  5. November 17, 2017 9:19 pm

    Reblogged this on Citizen Tom and commented:
    H/T to

    When I read this post, I had several thoughts.
    1. The person who wrote the post is thoughtful and caring.
    2. The post offers generally good advice.
    3. The post is one-sided.

    Objectivity is not something we come by easily. For mutual protection we form into mobs. Ever watched a school of fish? Even though they dart about, they still manage to swim in formation. Why do they do that? Apparently, it confuses their predators. Whereas a predator might be able to focus on, pursue, and wear out a lone fish, when it attacks a school it is the one that is worn down.

    How do predators counter the defensive strategy of schooling? They form “schools” of their own. Dolphins, for example, hunt in pods ( Working together, they confuse their prey and dine well.

    Imagine being accused of a crime. Imagine being pursue by a mob of reporters. Imagine the anxiety of being unable to prove your innocence. Without any supporters, how would you survive? If you are innocent, what is the chance you would receive justice? What is the chance your reputation would be destroyed?

    When someone assaults another person for sexual purposes, that is just like any other assault. It is a crime. The thing that make a sexual assault different is the motive. Is the victim more personally violated, more emotionally damaged? Seems to be the case. When the charge is rape, for some reason that does seem to make most people a bit more angry at the perpetrator than if he or she had badly beaten someone. If the victim is a minor, we are further outraged.

    Still, anyone accused of a crime deserves the due process of the law. Before passing judgment, we must establish guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. Because people lie, we cannot just assume they are telling the truth.

    When accusers come out of the woodwork 5, 10, 20, 30, or 40 years after the fact, that is not heroic. When accusers pile onto someone, there is nothing heroic about that. How do we know if the accusers are telling the truth or just want attention? Until we carefully investigate their stories, we just know there is mob of people pursuing some guy. We don’t even know who is the prey and who is the predator.


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