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June 13, 2022 10:00 pm
Author & sports reporter Kim Anthony peeled back the layers of her secret world filled with drugs, violence, & financial strain to overcome unfavorable odds.
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Unfavorable Odds Podcast: Kim Anthony knows something about finding hope in the face of unfavorable odds and finds others to share their stories.
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I had this art class at UCLA and you had to do a self-portrait and in my self-portrait I drew myself with a gag in my mouth. No idea. I mean to me.
I'm just being creative and as I began to peel back those layers that had come up as a result of abuse and and me feeling like I've lost my voice. I realized, oh my goodness subconsciously. That is what I felt like my voice had been stolen. Welcome to family life today where we want to help you pursue the relationships that matter most. I'm and Wilson and Andre Wilson.
You can find us if we live today.com were on our family life at this family life today very worthwhile will meet a couple is very rare that feels like they've live the same life we have gas. Today we got Kim Anthony back in the family life today studio with the skin. Welcome back think you really back yet. I don't know if you know this about our life, but I know a little bit about your life from your book unfavorable surprise guest with family life. I guess network called unfavorable is unknown. Corwin your husband you been married 30 or so years.
I think of known Corwin probably 20 and you know I did know some your background but you are college athletes. We were college athletes. I mean I wasn't a college athlete.
I think that I was I made. I was in your football player and found Jesus in my junior in college you guys found Christ in college I got married and you ended up in a chaplain in the NFL. We were jealous for 33 seasons.
I think you probably were chaplain of the team that actually one games is what we want. Some games but we lost some games also for that lamb you don't realize we lost almost every Miami Dolphins and you worked with the wives. Yes yeah and and then as we mentioned previously with you, your story be in birthright. A teenage mom who will try to abort you a couple times and then you're your dad walking in your life very similar to my experiences with me just hardship. And yet God met you in college is where we ended previously and start you on this journey in your in your faith with Christ but also with Corwin tell us where that wink is you said earlier, Corwin's are introduced you to the gospel. But there's more that story.
So what happened after that. Yes, so Corwin was that football player who share the gospel with me and I just knew that's what I needed. So Corwin had just re-committed his life to Christ, and here I am, I know nothing about what's good, what's bad, you know, in terms of walking with Christ. How old are you guys at the time we were. I think I was 19, we were sophomores St. elsewhere. Yes.
Okay. So we were both sophomores at UCLA and we started dating, but we did know how to date.
As Christians, and he did not tell me that there were certain things that God didn't approve of our life.
Actually, when I gave my life to Christ.
I was wondering like what is it say in the Bible about anything like physical interface is yeah okay because I thought it was okay before but now I don't know what Silas then asked Dave he wasn't living it. I don't think I want a follower Christ so course I wasn't delivered until later and I committed to Christ. But yeah, that was one of the first questions that I had as well in a relationship with a.m. what would intimacy look like to obey God relationship look like right yet I had no clue and there was a time where when Corwin said we need to stop having physical intimacy and I thought okay what's this all about, so he pulls out his Bible.
I wish I had the verses in front of me right now, but he reads through Scripture and talks about how God feels about physically fleeing from sexual immorality yes and you know for that physical relationship to be sacred in the context of marriage. What did you feel and what were you thinking you know what it may surprise you. I don't know but I got really excited because in my life I had known very few boundaries when I was six years old. My dad taught me how to roll joints so I was handling drugs as a six-year-old I had had my first sip of gin when I was probably eight or nine, I had had my first smoke of weed.
By the time I was nine-year-old Leo though because of the culture that was around me and can can I go hereto because we talk personally. Had there been sexual abuse in your background.
There had been, and it's something that I did not realize for so many years has had an impact on me as an adult, and those are some things that I'm still working through. Believe it or not it's very difficult.
The way my situation was handled was when I would speak up and tell the adults what was going on. Not my mother. But whoever was watching me at the time instead of me being believed and cared for and protected. I was blamed and then I was punished publicly so there was this amount of shame that just so that you become quiet, then me how to respond to that I did.
I became a person of very few words.
I started to believe this lie that I had no voice that even if I tell someone or say something or defend myself. No one's going to listen anyway so I stopped defending myself, I stopped having boundaries and as you can imagine, if you hear a female he have daddy issues. There a lot of people who would love to cross boundaries and sad to say that's been my experience. So sorry for how did you nonsuit her looking at two women who have walked through a similar situation in terms of abuse in their past. How did that shape messing both of you out of that shape you in terms of understanding who you were is your identity as I know there's people listen that are have a similar experience. How does that shape who you are for me. I think it stole a piece of who I was because there was so much shame and fear of really standing up for myself and really allowing people to know the real me.
I didn't want to trust anyone. So I think even now as I said before I'm discovering new things about myself that I had pushed down.
I guess that I had suppressed that I was too afraid to be because of the abuse same for you.
I think at the time you don't realize how it's affecting your identity that Shane the unworthiness I just try to cover it all up and I tried to be better. I tried to do better. I tried to become what everyone wanted big hands so that then I would perform for everyone's performance because inside I felt like I didn't know this. I would've never said at the time but I better perform for people's affection and love because if they really saw what was inside. When I truly believed no one would love me. I think that that's pretty typical. But I don't think in the moment, you're aware oh you're not absolutely not. I had this art class at UCLA and you had to do a self-portrait and in my self-portrait I drew myself with a gag in my mouth no idea to me. I'm just being creative and as I began to peel back those layers that had come up as a result of abuse and and me feeling like I lost my voice. I realized, oh my goodness subconsciously. That is what I felt like my voice had been stolen, and I took as an extreme of I will now protect myself and so I became really strong and that was another way of covering up and I was wanting to control my life and situation, and I use the power of any kind of sensuality against other people, I will control the situation. From now on you will not control me and so of course Dave strong will and I would be my question. I will work has been the hold program on this but you know I'm sick and marriage in a unique way sort of brings out all the brokenness in our passage is that it's like you enter into an institution which is awesome but it also is going to bring all this thinking and when I brought it up for us in our marriage but I'm the as were talking about the sexual abuse thing. There are husbands like me that when I found out Dan's past you know what to do know were almost newlyweds first couple years marriage and I my first response was in the past. No big deal. You're good right like that's it's it's all good.
It's all done. You had and I said get over it.
I was so na´ve. No idea.
Like all that I think a lot of husbands or maybe wives whose husbands, but abuse. We don't know what to do.
Talk to us why think there are two extremes. There's what you just mentioned but then there's also this extreme of anger and if anger is the response, then it makes the survivor of sexual abuse less likely to share even more with you.
I think for me I can only speak for myself would be for that spouse to empathize, to listen to ask gentle questions. How are you feeling how are you doing with this. Do you feel that you're still being affected by this in any way. Is there anything that I'm doing that reminds you of what happened to you that triggers the other fears. I think empathy would be key. What you think and I think today when you read the book by Dan Allender, the wounded heart you had a whole different perspective because my abuse was an extreme to the point where some people's abuse was, however, it still really affected me and so when somebody downplayed it like well could've been a lot worse. That made me think What's my problem. Why am I feeling bad about myself when you read the book, he became so empathetic he started asking a lot of questions. I think that's really helpful what he said to Mike ask questions again because to bring it back up only brings more healing. In my estimation as a husband I would just said to the moon, who were married or even dinner with a woman, maybe your dating that has this that is the next step is say how can I hope I don't get angry which I did that as well and a lot of men have been abused as well so it goes. Either way, but it's interesting you know as we go back to your story that you said is Corwin is saying hey we we need to stop doing some things and obey God. That felt good to you like that was something that Lulu wasn't the first time you had had a biblical viewpoint yes never heard of anything like that before in my entire life. Oh, I was only 19, but still I had never heard anything like that before, but I was so excited because I felt like my kidneys. I don't have to do anything to earn Corwin's love and that's the only reason I had been involved physically was because to me I guess in order to receive love. You have to give something in return and Corwin was straight up telling me you don't have to do this.
In fact, I don't want you to do this. I want us to wait. If we get married, then you know I want this to be ours after marriage. But if we don't get married we get married other people, then you know I want he wanted to save himself and and I began to want to do the same. It was exciting for me. I just felt like God was protecting me. Yeah, from heartache and from pain that I had already experienced, but from future heartache and pain and it was it was exciting for me what what a great person you just said so many of us don't ever think just protecting us. He actually loves you so much. She's protecting you for some not so sacred to put in the covenant of marriage between a husband and wife and you figured out how young is like. While this guideline.
This boundary is good. So how to go forward, fall in love and get married. A year later when I'm not why we dated often on for about four years and the rest of his time there and the rest of my time there and we kept breaking up.
We didn't know how to date, but as a Christian. So we would go too far and then we break up for month and they would get back together.
So this happened a gazillion times we just kept breaking up and then we finally broke up for about a year and we went our separate ways and I think what God did. I was so reliant on Corwin and his walk with the Lord. I didn't really have my own because I didn't have anyone else in my life who was was really helping me to figure things out from the Christian perspective and then when Cora and I broke up then I can no longer based my faith on his walk. I needed to grow myself and what God did was he did bring other Christian women into my life collecting money is one of those people. She was on campus Crusade for Christ staff athletes in action. Staff and she discipled me and then there were other people who built into my life and so we grew in Christ separately and then the Lord brought us back together and when we came back together.
We were in such a better place and we were ready to date and so we dated for maybe a year and we got engaged and got married so they are married in regard Christ as your foundation go well.
Was it like all this is awesome, or just run everything was perfect for 30 years.
Nothing is really hard so just as we didn't know how to date. As Christians we did not be married as Christians. His parents were divorced. My parents were divorced and we didn't have a healthy marriage modeled for us and family life today has played a pivotal role in helping us to know how to be married. We listen to the radio all the time. Almost every single day. We went to the weekend to remember marriage conference three times within the first five years of marriage and probably five times or when our speakers at that event. Yes, we are stepping into that role and were excited to be able to help other couples to navigate marriage and to share some of our stuff all the things that we did wrong. We want to be able to share that with other people so they can hopefully forgo that. But those first years of marriage were very difficult.
We didn't know how to communicate and we mimicked what we saw our own parents do your listening to Damon and Wilson with Kim Anthony on family life today. We are more of their conversation coming up, including the superheroes, single mothers can be first Father's Day is coming up this weekend.
Oh, you prepared well.
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Oh my goodness I could see the looks in their eyes. These aha moments they were having. As I shared my story and my mom story, and they would come up to me afterwards and say you know if God can do that for you and your mom that maybe he can do that for me and my children and so I just developed this heart to help low income single moms to overcome poverty like I had watched my mom do and started to do an outreach for single moms, low income, single moms through a partnership with athletes in action and the NBA All-Star weekend and for three years did a single moms outreach and we created is fabulous event for them in and experience and we brought in resources from those communities to help them with homeownership and on finances and the different issues that are challenges that they were facing.
I know there are a lot of single dad's but you have a heart for single moms because you've lived and watch that with your own mom but my friends that are single moms have told me that sometimes they feel like they're invisible in the church and they're not always addressed, and people don't know the needs of the struggle they're going through talk for them. What is it that they need and how can we help even as a church is a church yeah I will I read the statistic that said that in the over 300,000 churches in our nation less than 1% have viable single moms ministry and they are kind of put into these categories so you can be a part of women's ministry or you can be a part of the singles ministry, but the unique challenges they face are so different from either of those groups.
A lot of moms are feeling like they're being judged because of their circumstances, so some of them won't go to church. I'm just thinking as women, like if you're a woman in the church to go up to some of the leadership or even a women's ministry director and say what would it look like for us to have an impact, and to help single moms. What could we do and really it just takes that one person saying let's get together, as some women to dream and to pray like that how can you use us and maybe these women aren't just in your church but you could go out into the community. Community definitely and as that sounds wonderful.
What I have found and some others have found is that there churches who don't believe that single moms ministry is worth doing.
It's very sad. A lot of the single moms feel like they're doing life alone there embarrassed about their situations and women are single moms for different reasons. You have women who been abandoned. You have women who are being abused or have been abused. You have women who are divorced or women who have lost her husband and their now single moms as a church as a whole. I believe if leadership would galvanize the church around those single moms to the degree where they felt welcomed they felt accepted they felt that they weren't judge, and they are considered a family.
I've talked to people who don't even consider a single mom and their children to be a family unless there's a man in the picture, and for some of these women, they can't help that the father of their children don't want to be there so understanding that these are women who are most likely doing life alone. They don't have the support system they they need. They are losing jobs because they don't have anyone to watch the kids at a certain time or they have to go pick up the kids from school because they're sick. I would love to see a church bring in some single moms sit down and talk with them about the challenges they face that I would say you know as being a pastor for 30 years. It just takes one person who has a passion which I was is another juror, maybe even a push from the Holy Spirit of God to help in any area so if it's your listener this today and you're like me, I have a passion help single mom's maybe you are single mom baby or not. I know the way to work at our church and I hope every church abuse way.
So many ministries were started when a person would come up to me after a service usually say this desire wired you guys doing this to my writing so strong right now that every time I'd say okay you're the one to do it. How can we help you do it. Let's talk a sitdown will get the right people in the room with you. Ministries can be birthed not because some pastor and the state says about because somebody that God is put you know the motivation of passion, desire and says could I make a difference. Yup, God can use UPS to make a difference in your church or your community and if they don't help you, then you have to do it on your own, but do it. I may have the same at fearlessness and you have something beating your heart. This is all I can make a difference you can. Yes, you can start right here in family life will help you any way we can but bet it's going to be you just say I'm to do this. God can meet me and who knows what stores are going to come out of it. That's what you did there were here you I love how God is using you think we knew it because as you shared your story. It was obvious God wanted you.
He wants all of us but the fact that you would lay down your life and say, God, what you have for me I think she's just waiting for us to say that to him because he has a lot for all of us. That's David and Wilson with Kim Anthony on family life to you can find Kim's podcast called unfavorable odds wherever you get your podcasts. She talks with all kinds of people who have found their strength in Christ will going through really really difficult times their deep and inspiring conversations and you won't regret subscribing so search for unfavorable odds or go to family life to a.com and find the family life podcast network in the menu. David Robbins, the president of family life is with me here and David family life has seen God do amazing things through some really painful situations and circumstances that couples have gone through your email today. How to share with you was from a wife who been married for seven years. Her and her husband had just come away from a we can remember get away that family life host and she said" and we decided instead of ending our marriage and dividing the family were children and one on the way that we would confess our sins to each other. Repent to each other and forgive like Jesus.
It was the most eye opening difficult, painful, and yet beautiful example of the gospel that I've ever witnessed to see my husband view me vulnerable and exposed. And tell me he forgives me and loves me and wants us to reconcile us the power of the gospel in each one of our lives of Jesus being able to not only forgive us, but us being able to extend forgiveness to others, known as I listen today of the odds stacked against Kim and her life and how God redeems and restores and creates things new and beautiful things out of our pain. I think of many of you who may be experiencing pain, whether that's grief over what's happening in your marriage or with the child or suffering going on through sickness or job loss or all the things we are walking through it could be stress with a friend. God wants to meet us in it and can meet us in it as we run to him as our true hope in our source yeah that's well said. Thanks for sharing.
If you want to learn more about the various weekend to remember events. You can go to family life to a.com sign up and watch God transform your marriage tomorrow. David Abelson organ to be talking with author and musician Andrew Peterson about how our faith in Christ matters in the big things, yes, but in the little things as well.
When it comes to raising our kids that's coming up tomorrow. We hope you'll join us. On behalf of David and Wilson. I'm shall be added you back next time for another edition of family life to family like today's of family life accrual ministry helping you pursue the relationships that matter most