How the Duggars Failed to Trust God’s Divine Plan Amid Sexual Abuse

When I ceased from blogging about abuse in the churches, I did so to make a new path for myself. A path of peace, away from the turmoil of dealing with the dark stories that emerge from the pews and pulpits of American Christianity. It can become quite daunting to dig through the rubble of brokenness every single day. Yes, indeed…abuse is daunting, abuse is ugly, abuse is emotionally unattractive.

What Christian wants to portray Christianity as daunting, ugly, and emotionally unattractive? That won’t usher them into the pew! The only other option seems to be hiding the nastiness so people see only the good of church life. Well, that sure is deceptive. Just like how many bloggers want to hide the darkness in the Duggar molestation story and only show the sweet smiles of innocent children on their television screens. You know, because nice girls shouldn’t talk about it.

duggars

photo courtesy: The Daily Beast

But the story of Jesus isn’t all sweet and rosy to begin with. Would we hide the crucifixion of our Lord because it’s dark, bloody, and painful? No, we shine a light on it with good reason.

Is it painful to see what has happened in the Duggar family? Absolutely! It’s a travesty.

Could it have been avoided? Can Christian parents successfully avoid sexual pitfalls when they hold fast to their purity doctrines and practices? The purity movement sure hoped so.

Now the purity culture community has to face the fact that there is a flaw somewhere, but I suspect they will eventually point the finger somewhere other than the actual doctrines and practices. Probably at the devil, because they can’t have their doctrine viewed poorly.

Pointing the finger is a consistent practice among many Christians. However, the Sunday School song teaches us to point to ourselves first.

“It’s me, it’s me, it’s me oh Lord, standing in the need of prayer.”

Scripture teaches us that judgment BEGINS in the House of God. (1 Peter 4:17)

This doesn’t mean we omit speaking up about abuse that happens outside our own homes. As Christians we have an obligation to the Church and to the world. We have the God ordained duty to stand in the gap for victims worldwide, especially when they’re children.

Millions of people are angry at what has happened to these girls and rightfully so. How dare any of us become angry with the world for speaking out. They’re speaking out FOR THE VICTIMS. That’s what WE’RE supposed to be doing.

God ordained the government to bring justice to wickedness in our world and we usurp God’s authority when we FAIL to trust in His divine plan.

Romans 13:1-4 “1 Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God. 2 Therefore whoever resists the authorities resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment. 3 For rulers are not a terror to good conduct, but to bad. Would you have no fear of the one who is in authority? Then do what is good, and you will receive his approval, 4 for he is God’s servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword in vain. For he is the servant of God, an avenger who carries out God’s wrath on the wrongdoer.” ESV

From what I’ve read in countless articles (including the police report) it looks as though the Duggar parents faltered in trusting God’s ordained government to bring their son to justice.  They forgot that properly handing their son over to God’s divine authority of our land would have been a GOOD thing, that brings God’s APPROVAL (see verse 3 above). Sadly, (in verse 4) we see that disobeying that command brings God’s servant to them as the avenger.

In their attempt to being God they have usurped His commands, His authority, and are reaping the consequences.

As a parent of four children, I can understand the fear that must have come over them when they discovered their son was sexually violating their own daughters. I would be mortified if my children ever committed such a crime. They assumed they could handle their “family business” on their own, but then a non-relative girl was also sexually violated. Their primary concern seemed to be for their own son rather than for the girls who were victimized.

We all have failures as parents and it seems as though many bloggers and Facebook friends are taking up that stance. To defend the parents and their son in a very misguided attempt to show grace. Yes, God offers grace, but God is also just.

In God’s divine plan for our government, we have what’s called justice. The carrying out of God’s divine nature of being just.

The symbol of justice is a blindfolded woman holding a balanced scale and a sword. It’s the perfect imagery of the passage from Romans 13.

In our God ordained government, we have what’s called Victim Assistance. They have a free online victim assistance class that teaches you their plan for justice in serving both victims and perpetrators.

As a family so deeply involved in politics and with such an avid thirst for the Constitution, the Duggars seem to have missed this very crucial lesson. One would think that, among their many political friends, they would have learned this at some point.

Perhaps the conservative political community missed it too.

Justice is to bring the abuser and the victims to balance. The government is designed to assist abusers in getting licensed, professional support to change their lives (especially when it’s a minor). At the same time, God’s ordained government is equipped to support victims in receiving licensed, professional support to guide them in their healing.

In doing so, the Duggars would not have left their son helpless (as they may have feared).

They speak of trusting God, but they did not trust his plan.

I don’t condone a “witch hunt” against this family. However, I do support raising awareness about abuse.

We have forgotten that God ordained our government. He GIVES His *authority* to the government for times like these.

We need to trust this.

We need to remember that sin and crime are handled differently.

We do NOT have God’s permission nor His authority to handle CRIME in-house. Especially not the crime of abuse (sexual or otherwise) and most importantly not when it involves children.

The disturbing reality of this popular Christian reality show is not merely this one abuse case. It’s the fact that so much of Christianity is infiltrated with abuse indoctrination and the scary part about it is that they are completely unaware and disbelieving in this fact. Since churches refuse to be awakened to this reality, it continues to fester.

We’re not living under the tyrannical rule of King James anymore. It’s time to cast his mandated abusive doctrines and practices into the pit of hell where it belongs.

Christianity needs to be reborn. We don’t need a reformation of what’s already in existence. We need to eliminate it and embrace the Resurrection as it’s intended to be, a real clean slate.

We need to stop trying to clean up something that’s dead. Stop putting a white dress on a tomb and stop calling it “Christian”.

This isn’t the Christianity I read of in the Bible.

*Disclaimer: As an advocate for health and wellness, I provide my personal opinion and experiences with essential oils. None of what I testify of has been evaluated by the FDA, nor is it intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. I am not a registered medical professional and I encourage you to discuss your health concerns with your own doctor. I simply share resources and tools to raise consumer awareness. This post may contain affiliate links. Read my full disclaimer here

I am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com

Photo hosting, photo sharing, stock photos, Family Friendly Photo Community on Pix-O-Sphere

Why I’m Breaking up with Coconut Oil

I am 42 years old and still suffer from embarrassing acne. It’s been a long and arduous battle to keep my skin care marriage happy. I’ve tried all the popular skin care lines the celebrities talk about in commercials aired during talk shows and teen tv shows. None of them worked for me and some of them made my skin more sensitive to the sun. For this fair skinned woman of German and Irish descent, having sun sensitivity is something I have to be vigilant about. Last year I began flirting with various natural products to figure out what would work best for me. I had divorced all the popular make up lines as well. I started using Bare Minerals several years ago and that did help minimize break outs, but I still had to come face to face with clogged pores and quarter size acne whenever Aunt Flo visited (she’s such an interloper!). It’s been somewhat of a fad to use coconut oil for just about everything, but let me tell you why I stopped using coconut oil on my face.

stopped using coconut oil

I’m breaking up!

For the most part, coconut oil was better for my skin than the other popular and expensive lines I had used before, but as the week of Aunt Flo approached every month, my pores would clog and produce acne. I would dab a bit of coconut oil on each blemish a few times a day and it did clear up faster, but I couldn’t get acne to stop intruding in my life. Every month I had to steam, cleanse, massage, and extract clogged pores. At my age, I shouldn’t have acne. I’m sick of the acne (and I’m sick of having a period, but lets not go there today. Acne is depressing enough as it is).

While I’ve been studying in my aromatherapy course, I came to the lesson on making skin care products. I also happened to see a comment on Dr. Axe’s website mention that coconut oil is a 4 on the comedogenic scale. Yet, many women do use it on their faces without ever getting a clogged pore. While I’m happy for them, I don’t want to be a home wrecker to them. All of our skin and pores are unique and mine just isn’t happy with me using coconut oil.

I’m breaking up with coconut oil. Well sort of. Just when it comes to my face. It’s still great on the feet, elbows, and knees. It’s also a luxurious oral treat to loosen up food particles in between your teeth to help make flossing easier. There are many wonderful uses for coconut oil, I’m just not going to keep lathering it all over my face.

I had to find something else so I started flirting with other oils. Oils for acne prone skin, you ask? Yes!

I tried tea tree oil (Melaleuca), but here’s what happened….indeed it would dry up the acne, but then it just stayed there in the pore, dried up, and looking rather unsightly. Any product that dries up the skin didn’t work out for me. My skin would then work over time and produce tons of oil. I’m not fond of having a lubricated sheen on my face.

I figured my skin is thirsty so why am I trying to dry it up? Using a lower comedogenic moisture rich product is just what my skin needed. For now, I’m using almond oil with Vetiver and Lavender essential oils. Within 24 hours I noticed a remarkable difference in my skin. Almond oil is a 2 on the comedogenic scale, while coconut oil is a 4. I’m currently having that monthly visit from Aunt Flo and my skin looks amazing. Just a couple days prior, I began to have a break out on my chin. That was the day I made the change and that was when my skin actually cleared up during PMS week (instead of 2 weeks later).

To clear that starter acne up faster, I applied Vetiver (neat) to the blemish at night after cleansing and by morning it was just about gone. Two days later and it’s as if it was never there to begin with.

Now let me tell you, I’m NOT a fan of blog articles that offer a “golden ticket” promise when it comes to using essential oils. I don’t like the “hurry, while supplies last” tone I read all over the Internet. I’m going to be downright honest with you so you aren’t mislead in any way. This may not be a popular move among some essential oils reps nor among bloggers who are making money from you buying coconut oil through their affiliate links.

Since all of us have unique skin care needs, you need to find what works for YOUR skin. I still feel like I’m in the experimental stage of discovering what my skin will be happiest with. I’d love to be able to tell you a “my skin lived happily ever after” story, but I’m just not there yet. But I am 100% happily married to essential oils and I will continue to date coconut oil for other reasons.

I’ll keep using almond oil for a month before trying a mix of shea butter and sunflower oil (they’re both a zero on the comedogenic scale). For now, I’m much happier with almond oil than coconut oil. I don’t mean to be fickle, I just have to be more committed to my skin than to a popular trend.

 

 

*Disclaimer: As an advocate for health and wellness, I provide my personal opinion and experiences with essential oils. None of what I testify of has been evaluated by the FDA, nor is it intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. I am not a registered medical professional and I encourage you to discuss your health concerns with your own doctor. I simply share resources and tools to raise consumer awareness. This post may contain affiliate links. Read my full disclaimer here

I am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com

Photo hosting, photo sharing, stock photos, Family Friendly Photo Community on Pix-O-Sphere

When Our Teens Struggle with Wisdom and Peer Pressure

I prefer to write more about wellness than anything else, as it has helped me to find peace for my own life, but sometimes we need to talk about the nitty gritty stuff that gets thrown at us in this life. I don’t like to focus on it, but we can’t ignore it either. I’d rather spend my time talking and writing about solutions than shining a spotlight on the multiple problems we face in today’s world. But let’s be honest for a minute. Parents struggle with doing the right things for our kids and our teens struggle with obeying wisdom and often times surrender to peer pressure to fit in. What’s a parent to do?

sunset on red mountains Sedona by sisterlisa, on Pix-O-Sphere

In my 23 years of marriage and raising 4 kids, I’ve seen my fair share of teen drama and parenting skills (and mistakes) to glean wisdom from. When Scott and I married young, we faced tremendous opposition through his addiction. Thankfully, we overcame those years and had plenty of personal experience to teach our kids. We never lied about what we had been through and we do feel it’s made our kids stronger.

As a family, we served in the homeless and addiction/recovery community for 15 years. Our kids have seen shattered lives from the front row and witnessed how hard it was for broken people to get their lives back on track. Then my husband and I faced uncertain turmoil when our own daughter was hospitalized after following a doctor’s recommendation to use medicinal marijuana for her anxiety and sleep disorders.

How could she take something that we had taught her for YEARS to stay away from? How could we face other parents as we seemed to have “failed somehow” in our parenting? What’s a parent supposed to do when their legally adult child follows a doctor’s recommendations?

This was an extremely difficult battle ground for all of us, but we become stronger through it. Thankfully, it didn’t tear us apart like it does to many families.

The day we realized our daughter was ill, she had left her girlfriend’s house on foot (though she had her car with her). She was found running on Highway 1 (PCH, speed limit 55 mph) and crying, “I need my daddy, he was right”.

Parents, please listen to my heart. Don’t beat yourselves up when your kids make decisions you don’t agree with. We need to give ourselves grace so we can extend grace to them, because condemnation against yourself or them isn’t going to help either of you.

Navigating through such turmoil takes a lot of patience, love, and faith. I’m not talking about religion or it’s many rule keeping practices. I’m talking about having a faith, a hope, in something better. In something higher, nobler, and humble.

It’s deep within us all, if we just take the time to discover it. Any good discovery takes lots of digging and exploring. Digging through some personal trenches in our own hearts and exploring impossible possibilities.

This kind of possibility is like striking the mother lode. It’s a gold that is so pure you may not believe you even found it, yet there it is and it’s all yours. It doesn’t come easy and you’ll get rather filthy trying to find it. You’ll scrape your knees and your knuckles may bleed.

And when you see it, you may cry, sob, or shout ecstatically. For me, I cried…sobbed.. the gratitude I found in the exploration, prior to seeing our daughter survive and heal from her tragedy. To be truly thankful before having an answer. That hope you grab a hold of when you don’t see the light at the end of the tunnel. It’s a life line I’ll never forget.

Yes, I utilized many practices through meditation to help me stay focused. Yes, I thought on stable and empowering mantras and quotes to keep me sane. Yes, I sat in quiet contemplation when I felt my world falling apart.

And all the while I felt a calmness during the storm that is difficult to describe. It wasn’t religious by any means. It’s not something an Atheist would miss. It’s not something that would be hidden from someone of another religion or spiritual practice. It’s not something any parent would miss out on.

It’s something that happens, I think, for any parent who sees their kid suffer.

Have you been there?

*Disclaimer: As an advocate for health and wellness, I provide my personal opinion and experiences with essential oils. None of what I testify of has been evaluated by the FDA, nor is it intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. I am not a registered medical professional and I encourage you to discuss your health concerns with your own doctor. I simply share resources and tools to raise consumer awareness. This post may contain affiliate links. Read my full disclaimer here

I am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com

Photo hosting, photo sharing, stock photos, Family Friendly Photo Community on Pix-O-Sphere