100 dating for widows
There are many times that I don’t realize just how much strange teaching I’ve had to undo in my life. She now lives in gorgeous Montana with her husband and three kids, loving life, writing about spiritual abuse and grace, and leading worship for church, retreats, and special events.I usually don’t realize it until times when I try to explain them to someone else. A dear friend and I were talking about our kids and how to help them transition from children to adults. More posts by darcys | Visit the site of darcys In my brief skimming of these comments I have seen several accusations of "throwing out the baby with the bathwater." I suggest that this is exactly what has been done by the broad concept of courtship.The topic of dating and relationships came up and we started talking about my story. In my life it meant never having a crush on a guy, never allowing myself to “fall in love.” Basically, training myself to shut down a normal, healthy, functioning part of my human heart. I told her if she was to walk out of the room, leaving me and her husband in the same room, my first reaction would be one of panic. Let me explain: regretful parents assume that their children will, as they once did, compromise their lives and/or potential in the process of finding a mate. But rather than teaching their children to listen carefully to the Holy Spirit, they hedge, protect, and smother this time with a fence of control.Sometimes it’s actually comforting to me to be met with blank or incredulous stares from people I consider “normal,” good Christians. I’m 27 years old, and I’ve been married for almost 7 years. Shame because sometimes you can’t help but like one guy a little more than another. Pride because you are so much more spiritual than that poor girl over there who is crying because her boyfriend broke up with her. They made up laws that God never condoned, then patted themselves on the back for keeping them, while looking down on those who didn’t. Those of us that have been through a parent-directed courtship are standing here before you, testifying that this "method" will prove every bit as detrimental and be every bit as likely to end in divorce.It somehow validates my belief that some of the teachings I grew up with were very wrong. I rejected the teachings of courtship and emotional purity when I was 19. In fact, I have identified several ways that these teachings can damage a person’s heart. Shame because that’s “sinful” and “emotionally impure.” Shame because it sets a standard and proclaims that you are somehow shameful if you cannot keep it. Because your heart is whole and she just gave a piece of hers to a guy she isn’t married to. You have more to give your future husband than she does. This has nothing to do with the righteousness and grace of God, and everything to do with the accomplishments of man. I was trying to explain this to my friend, and it came out sounding so . If I went today and took a job suggested by my dad I am *sure* it would lead to failure eventually.Lately, I’ve also started facing the ways in which the teachings of “emotional purity,” (a la Josh Harris, the Ludys, and others) have damaged the part of my brain that makes healthy relationships function. You are considered damaged goods if you have fallen in love and had your heart broken. I remember watching a video in which one of the biggest names in the courtship movement bragged with obvious arrogance that he didn’t tell his wife he loved her until their wedding. We took something as simple as saying ‘I love you,’ built a straw man rule around it (‘saying I love you is defrauding’), then hung it like a trophy on our walls.” Job well done, folks. They create skewed views of relationships which lead to dysfunction. Where others see nothing wrong, I am suspicious of every look, every situation, every witty exchange. I feel ill at ease sometimes even talking to other men. I’m really good at pushing those feelings away and acting “normal.” But I am bothered by my reaction to everyday situations. Not because my dad is a bad person or doesn't genuinely want the best for me, but because I deemed his counsel more valuable than the voice of the Holy Spirit. But it's not an automatic, and should never be assumed to be an automatic that your parents' voice equals that of the Holy Spirit.
This has got to be the most bogus and the most damaging teaching of this entire movement. And, really, I haven’t given them “pieces” of my heart. The miracle of love is that it multiplies by being given. And what view of redemption does this teaching proclaim? I knew in my heart that this was God's leading, and while I also knew my parents would love him, it was not ultimately their decision whether I should accept this dinner date. Thus began a journey to know God and understand life; a journey from bondage to grace; a journey she's still making. At age 17 she fell in love with her best friend and her perfect little formulated world came crashing down. She was homeschooled her whole life, raised in a cultic church and with the principles taught by Bill Gothard and IBLP. Students who have survived Gothardism tend to end up at a wide variety of places on the spiritual and theological spectrum, thus the diversity of opinions expressed on this website reflects that. Darcy is a seeker, Jesus-lover, and a bit of a rebel.
All articles on this site reflect the views of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of other Recovering Grace contributors or the leadership of the site.