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Why the SBC Sexual Abuse Report Matters

The Christian Perspective / Chris Hughes
The Truth Network Radio
June 14, 2022 5:30 am

Why the SBC Sexual Abuse Report Matters

The Christian Perspective / Chris Hughes

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June 14, 2022 5:30 am

Author and speaker, Tonya Shellnut shares her true story of abuse and shares the earnings signs of sexual abuse and how we can go from a victim to a victor.

Truth Talk
Stu Epperson
Kingdom Pursuits
Robby Dilmore
Truth Talk
Stu Epperson
The Christian Perspective
Chris Hughes
The Christian Perspective
Chris Hughes
The Christian Perspective
Chris Hughes

Hi Angela Dick Nair Mema with storytime Mema and answered prayer for stories that point children to God on the Truth Network for kids your chosen Truth Network podcast is starting just few seconds enjoying it, share it the most of all, thank you for listening to The Truth Podcast Network. This is good Truth Network get ready. It's one of America's most important, influential and respected voices on cultural and political issues and apologist and offer you is the founder and assuming America foundation, Dr. Chris where really podcast later today. Today shows will be an incredible show you want to listen to again you're gonna want to download the podcast and share with your friends on social media because it's an important topic in our topic today is the be the issue of sexual abuse and specifically what's happening within the Southern Baptist convention is the largest Protestant denomination in the world today. There a lot of problems of the Bible convention of this week as it shows areas. Matter fact later today. The convention began to write in Anaheim California and this is issues can be talked about for the next couple of days at our annual meeting here in Anaheim so all would you be sure to pay attention and listen to the information given logic apply what's happening at the convention today, but what's happening in your church.

No matter where your churches around the country around the world. So please listen and share with your friends before you start, I want to thank our sponsors this is for America foundation for making this their official show ever hosting us and if you want to learn more about what's going on. The culture how you can develop a biblical worldview. I encourage you to visit citizens for America citizens for America where you can sign up to get emails and insights that I don't flood your inbox with emails on something important happening. They let you know they have a lot of webinars other information allowed great events they put on across the country of matter fact in just a couple weeks.

I'm to be leading a tool for them to Washington DC where you can learn from a Christian perspective about the American heritage of our nation and how our nation was founded as a Christian nation where founding fathers really Christians. A lot of people tell you today that are not what they were and you learn all about. If you want to go on the trip visit citizens for America click events and you get all the information about that trip in our trip to Israel coming up on December 26. My love to have you join me as we walk in the footsteps of Jesus. Of course I want that Mid-America Baptist theological seminary for being the host of the Christian perspective studios right in Memphis Tennessee. If you're looking for great college. Your kids might want to attend college of Mid-America or if you want to get a masters or doctorate degree. Specifically, I got a great new program apologetics, which is understanding what you believe in being will defend why you believe it, go to MA that MA and learn more about Mid-America Baptist theological seminary. Today we have a topic that is a painful subject because they affect so many people in the country today, one out of three every three women and one out of every four men have been sexually abused in some way shape or form in our country today. That means when you're sitting in church.

If you look to the left of you and to the right of you. If you are one of the three of you is been sexually abused and it's a wake-up call that the church really need to pay attention to our guest today is written a great book called wounded, wounded, and defined in the book that addresses these issues of going from a victim to a victor. That's what we can do through Jesus Christ. As we can find victory even in terrible situations in our lives. And I'm so honored that my dear friend Tonya shall not want us today to talk about this very difficult issue. Tonya welcomed the Christian perspective thinking so much Chris for having me. I really appreciate a monarchy with you all today well. Thank you.

And if this is a difficult topic at the top hit close to home to you.

But before we jump into that. I would like our first Tonya to get to know our guest account available personal whale just the topic we talked about can you, tell us about your life, your family.exciting things going on with you with your son coming up in the future. Don't little bit about who you are and that what you're doing. So I had to make and I have been married for 27 years at coming up here in July. We have five children have very black eye agent 20 6Q 15 I am the senior state government relations director for Alliant defending freedom the world's largest religious liberty organization I work with legislators and coalition groups across the country to try make sure we have generational instrument perspective I and now at the mom just busy and he said we have a son can be heading over to the Citadel in August.

Our oldest daughter actually worked in Washington DC he is that director of government relations at Welland, has been on his own company and very active in our community and love the church in an excited for what God is doing. I know that you mentioned you work with lies.

Defending freedom and I didn't realize so yesterday I read that had nothing to do with you. I was reading something else in and I didn't realize they were the largest in that field and you'll just do tremendous work on thank you so much Earl. The front lines every single day and and you neuroma Richard a great job of raising kids to understand the need to be engaged in the public arena engaging the community and I just appreciate you doing that I love to see when parents train their kids to be about the culture for Jesus and you guys certainly done that. What time you want to ask another thing are people out there Tonya who will listen who may not be Christians, or maybe we have some Christians out there who don't share their testimony with other people.

Testimony is just simply what Jesus is done a lot and so some people had these dramatic conversions were. Maybe they were drug addicts or killers on death row or whatever it may be. And then there are people like me who grew up in a Christian family got saved at an early age and and I let God use that excuse of me not having one of these dramatic young pocket. I could write a book.

I thought about my customer, but you really it is dramatic for all of us because no matter what the situation, God changed us from being a sinner, condemned to go to hell.

The saving grace of Jesus Christ.

We know that we can have eternal life with him in heaven one day you mind sharing how you came to know Jesus and how God can change your life absolutely actually interweave not What were talking about faith that I didn't collapse church and back on my birth father left when I was six months old my mother married an alcoholic and I grew up in an alcoholic, and part of most of my story start. It was very tumultuous and very rough upbringing with a lot why should it with the lack of supervision. I was pretty much glad to just do whatever I wanted.

I ended up as a result of the story that we can talk about today.

I started drinking when I was in sixth grade and alcohol with choice for me for coping because that's what I saw in my home. That's what my So I thought well that's what she did to high pain and so when I met my husband, Rich, and he said to me he said Tonya and he think that you have a drinking problem that I'm pretty good and I went to a counselor and did an intake test and it did radio that impact I did have a problem until Dave recommended that IBM patient and her 30 day timeline to treatment and I got sober and I've been sober for 27 years after 28 years in November and when I I didn't come to-treatment. I just had learned about the higher power and knowledge that when I might have been families all from South Carolina. I grew up in Montana. There's a bar on every corner and just not a lot of strong faith community info.

My husband and I were getting ready to move to Charlotte Carolina on August 23, 1990 and I was at work. My last days at work and I got a phone call from my doctor dad and he said Tonya you need to come home right now. He was very happy that I knew something was really wrong and it up with you. My mother in a horrific motorcycle accident and he died in my mom and I were very close and so that they are stuck had gotten on the moving van to come to Charlotte and had left my mom and we made our way to Charlotte.

My husband had Tonya working to start going to church and all like okay what is that look like, and so we had visited a couple churches and one day I called a Christian radio station that I just happened to be listening to and I have to make it he looking for a church. Do you have any suggestions since the guy, laughed. He and never got not question before, and he invited me Q Creek Baptist Church kissed her.

I might have been Dr. Joe Brown was pretend that day and when he gave an altar, and my husband and I went forward and gave her life to Christ and that began my road to recovery and with my relationship with Jesus.

Yeah, that's where it all started. Well Tonya I did know that about you and that is such a powerful testimony because very few adults you know come to know Jesus and usually other younger euro for both you and your husband you save on the same day that I don't want to brought you much but it was just the Holy Spirit moving you knew was it Apollo, what happened yeah absolutely we had visited. Like I said at the other churches and when we went went there it was just like I think he was talking about Nehemiah don't remember what about but he just gave this altar, we both just like where we need to be and we ended up getting back together and it was so interesting because you know that night had visitation rights of these two gentlemen show up at the door with you. Now, a plate of cookies and I'm like why are you here. I know that's what they did and they came to the door and they brought their cookies and invited advanced and not began the mentoring process and loving on January showing the hands and feet of Christ and what it looked like it was there so many stories behind that but I just really began to deal working you know when you're in Sunday school class of people and you don't know where books of the Bible are. I remember specifically, they were studying Nehemiah and nobody laughed at me because I didn't know where Nehemiah was in the blood in the Bible. They just this is where it is and they help me along and now I was nave to ask but I ask a lot of questions and I think that was really helpful is such a neat story and I don't know that I have ever had anybody come on, where the husband and wife saved at the same time that had to be such an interesting time for you riches you grew together you go to the Lord together and did he have a church that wrote you were ready to go to work with Bob or your you have a little bit of background. He had a little bit of a background he got mad, financed and so they did go to church on occasion by more often than not it was now that we know now concrete and a person story. What this show is brought to you by generous Joe's coffee company with the Christian perspective, this is the answer that Christians and conservatives have been looking for a coffee company that gives back causes you care about. Order your copy today at shop generous Joe's daughter and even subscribe to a subscription coffee plan and never forget you or causes you care about locking the fixed fee to Siebel come to life this December. I joined nationally for radio host and found a foundation to create life change the world of meaning, traveled from all over the world thousand reasons.

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It was on this day June 14, 1777 the second Continental Congress Joseph this is the flag of the United States in 1960, Pres. Woodrow Wilson signed a proclamation making this day national flag. It was also on this day in 1954, Pres. Dwight Eisenhower signed the act of Congress which added the phrase one nation under God to the Pledge of Allegiance to the flag. Eisenhower stated from this day forward. Billions of schoolchildren with daily claims.

The dedication of our nation to the Almighty one for some perspective on my gift today.

Tonya Shona's award Protestant denomination world meeting is not Catholic churches within the Southern Baptist convention and you understand as we get into this issue today are independent and autonomous meeting.

Like if you go to a Catholic church, the head of the Catholic Church on earth is the Pope and there's a hierarchy of priest archbishops and bishops of that kind of thing and they all work for the Catholic Church as a whole, Southern Baptist churches are independent meaning and autonomous meaning that they are governed on the local basis Southern Baptist convention has no power or authority over the local church built what they come together for is the purpose of missions so they are the largest mission sending organization at least Protestant in the world and what they do is they give to a funds affairs of the beverage may not even notice your church gives a percentage of your ties and offerings to what's called the cooperative program, the Southern Baptist convention and with the money raised in that cooperative program or that these are independent, autonomous churches cooperating together they send missionaries in the United States to what's called the North American Mission Board and around the world as well to the IMB which is the international mission work. So other than coming together for the purpose of cooperation.

There is no power structure or authority of the Southern Baptist convention over local churches and all but over the last couple of years there's been some accusations of possible sexual abuse by some churches or pastoral leadership in churches across the country and last year at the annual meeting of the Southern Baptist convention voted to have an investigation work firm was hired to investigate allegations of sexual abuse within churches of the Southern Baptist convention and that report was recently released and talk to you and talk. I know that report of sexual abuse is of interest to you. Why is that report interesting to you and and why did it affect you. So when I was five years old again.

My parents just lacked a lot of supervision lived in their own world and did their own thing and they allowed for a neighbor and 18-year-old male neighbor who they hardly knew could maybe set me and he sexually assaulted me on when I was five years old and I blacked out the experience because it was so traumatic and didn't start remembering and how I was in fifth grade and said that was part of what led me to alcohol the drinking the destructive behaviors that relationship and really was, was the key experience in my upbringing that cause so much pain for me and so when I came to know Jesus.

Obviously, you know, I was having tremendous amount of depression and PTSD is just so much going on in my life and I knew that I needed help and so as I began to come to disciple and work with leaders at the church and God used a pastor actually moved back to Montana in 2001. God, he is a pastor from Montana really help block my husband and an FTC pastor that my husband and I through that, of sexual abuse and specifically need help me walk see that. So when I began to see what was happening within the SPC. The real pivotal moment was for me but about four years ago when I had a conference and in particular conference.

They were focused on the victims of sexual abuse that it but it stopped at that. It stopped at their victims. This is terrible and nothing out and I'm like, wait a minute you're not them. The most important thing that they need to hear.

They need to hear about the healing of Jesus Christ and not conversation it wasn't happening actually had to walk out of the room because I was no infuriated that these women that were talking about being completely shortchanged on the power of Christ, so that for me was the catalyst in an becoming really interested in what was happening in the SPC world and you know at the end of the day we had this report we have. There's no doubt that there's been failing on both sides is concerning to me. All we are talking about is the problem and nobody is getting down into the solution and where do we go from here. We cannot continue to foster this environment of victimization yeah very important that we acknowledge that there that people have been back to Mike. We have to be that we have to talk about that but do not there.

We got to helping people get over the healing bread and that's really what I'm most passionate about, because I know that the FET pastors that were influential in my life.

Help me along the way and I don't want our pastors to be afraid to speak truth because of what's happening so that that's my where I met that I think that's a real concern Tonya because that actually talks about a week or so in their spare because there seems to be a lawsuit until the out there and I think some people felt like they were engaging the proper amount trying to defend anybody but about what people that like pastors that actually participated but maybe when someone brought three women accusations a lot of careers one where someone in the church brought the information to a pastor to a seminary president, and they may or may not thought that they were handling property at the time in your years later it comes out in there being accused of brushing it under the table or whatever. So I know a lot of your writer think you're scared of.

I don't know.

I don't know what to do about it, and it's clearly the Southern Meadows conventions are just a lot of a lot of time this year a lot of money, but there were more than 700 cases. I think if it's right that were revealed in this report, the auto but what period of you know, it's not just last year, but over many years and it needs to be investigated and there need to be a healing player sex abuse problem globally not the church.

As we mentioned in the first segment you told me.

I realize it was his how that one in three women are one of four men had actually been sexually abused so there probably need to be a multifaceted approach of this Tonya, how do we address this here yeah how do we address this.

Where do we go from here on. I think the first the first one of the most important one is prevention. Putting protections in place and not just institutionally, but that's from a practical point that's from a family standpoint, I think that there's a lot of room for my husband and I specifically when we had kids. We were very you know were not allowed for sleepovers with people we don't know and we just have to be on guard and I'm not saying you know be helicopter parent that you pay attention to what's going on in the surrounding cinders. There's a warning sign to lock in on you know people are distracted and we need parents to be focused and being aware of what's happening in the same is true for the institutions been now I don't have all the answers to what that looks like, but are our job for the church is to protect the most vulnerable all across the board and when were not doing that. There is a problem and so we gotta make sure that that protections in place in the not really leap into the second part I am not equipping pastors and churches many many pastors are not equipped to handle wounded souls in the church were inadvertently fostering victimization when we don't deal directly with wounds of the congregants and now I don't know what their teaching in seminary or know what kind of coping skills that they have back. A lot of pastors just don't have the tools to know how to deal with and anything do you have the tools like you said earlier they're afraid because they like or what if she thinks that I am believe her or just all of these different things until he got to make sure that pastors and churches are quick and and this is this is where were real life experience. This is really great to be educated and academia, and that's all really important very important to be theologically sounding know all about everything that the Bible says that there's a practical point to this and if we get so focused on the theology component of it or that the other side. The practical component and we don't combine the two. We miss opportunities in joke making sure pastors are equipped because this this sex abuse and whether it's done to the female male affects the family as a whole. You know, for years I had flashbacks and my husband had Q I'm work through that with me and specifically from an intimate perspective and what what does that look like and answered don't feel like that because they don't want you and it's not because they're not willing just that the church and pastor pastors are are the doctors for the wounded souls and to help guide them into the healing power of Christ. And so I'm not then you know put forth different. We need a framework for the occasion to help strengthen the family and then to focus week. This is yet I think often times we become so focused on baptism and numbers right you okay honey baptism you have this week right at the fact that they report in Q SPC executive team. The baptism and focus more on that instead of discipling and helping healing. The people in our church where missing opportunities to help us across the bridge of healing and so I think that that this is employed right now and I and I think everyone talking about this opportunity to disciple and to help without. That's a long answer to your question about how we take a multi-coach will we deftly need to also as a quick break and come back. I want to dig into is just a list of folks were talking about inflation country house churches with room. America has a strong Christian heritage, most Americans don't know really important role God in the Bible is founder of America foundation, Dr. Chris for meeting date with Chris will embark on a journey of discovering the hidden much of America's Christian heritage up close and personal knowledge of all the government and the men who helped forge this new kind of Republic acknowledge the creator from its very inception the truth about the creation of the mounting father Christian principles America secure your spot to join this show is brought to you by generous Joe's coffee company with the Christian perspective, this is the answer that Christians and conservatives have been looking for a coffee company that gives back to causes you care about. Order your copy today at shop generous Joe's job and even subscribe to a subscription coffee plan and never forget you or causes you care about the conservative Baptist network is a dynamic movement of Southern Baptist pastors, churches and Christians committed to standing for the sufficiency of God's word in the face of a culture of compromise. The passionate prayer of the conservative Baptist network is that God would help Southern Baptist stable for the gospel so that we might see revival in America in the Christ.

Visit our website to learn how you and your church can join and support this exciting movement, but yesterday Jonah is authored a book called the blind Victor were talking about a delicate issue this week at the Southern Baptist convention's annual meeting in California opens up later today.

There's just been a report released from the executive committee of the Southern Baptist convention about sex abuse and how it is handled and addressed with the church is to be a big issue we discussed later today and tomorrow that I wanted to have Tonya come on and talk about this important issue. Tonya want to get into the southern bugs convention a little bit more just a minute before you do.

There is you said that one out of three women one other form that goodbye this is your sitting in church with the first left brought you probably been sexually abused one of you has so I don't want to just brush over which you cover right before the break. You talked about understanding warning signs are looking for warnings like you know when I know month when my daughter thinks they dug right with me because she wanted to spend the night with people that I've never met and never met her parents and I would let her do it in and she was mad at me but this is a situation that is terrible on, and is not always mean you can't be safe with just so you know many case statistics many times somebody you know is in the case you shared.

You know with the babysitter that was against a neighbor, friend or family or many times it's it's his family members, and I know I'm not accusing all that this is one reason that I hate divorce.

It's a plague of our country and have heard many stories somebody very close to me stepfather you abused her for years so you know it is an issue that touches all of our lives whether we realize it or not and that it affects you.

You shared later on when when people would come married their spouse. They made out of sheer year.

Like you said. For years you can't get it not heated but it was hidden from you know from your conscious level. You tried to push it very back in the dark places of your mind and people get married and it affects their sexual relationship and other ways of the relationship as well. The spell may not have a clue that person was abused and it really really affects families and sometimes a terrible way, but you you talked about.

We need to recognize warning signs I had Dr. Willie Montague on the show while back and he was talking about sex trafficking, which is a different issue but talked about how even he always also traffic sex trafficking gives will kidnap just waiting like though even in your own house your kid to be manipulated by somebody on the Internet be sharing pictures like outgoing and that he shared warning signs you mentioned wanting Southwell ago. What are some of the things that parents can look for to know that there might be a problem and we need start addressing her though. Specifically when it comes to children, let's say can only speak from my experience and I am by no means a licensed counselor. I'm just along the way.

Counseled women who have gone to this and have have an addiction can think of that nature and you know for me specifically. I was actually deathly afraid of being left alone with any party to the point where I was cleaning my parents. My mom's leg and I never wanted to be left alone. I would I would sleep on the floor in their bedroom. You know you you have kids you have bedwetting issues.

There's a little often times very irrational fears that are accompanying children and I think those are the some of the warning signs and I I have always been very frank with my kids about this is how I want to escape like this about talking about good touch bad touch and sometimes that's uncomfortable for people that we need to have conversations with our kids and tell them you know very young age have the time my kids like what you need to be careful. Don't let anybody touch you like, you know appropriate conversation a lot of books written about how you can specifically talk to your kids by now. I always thought my kids you like.

If you feel uncomfortable. If there's anything in your spirit that you're not comfortable with unique because you know that that could be God trying to protect you and so we I was very open with my kids about it because I always wanted to make sure that they paid attention and they had situational awareness that had a strong situational awareness and I think that's something that you know many of our kids are in their devices or you know just not paying attention and her parents just let that go, that we've got to be able to equip the for the real world and so making sure that we have that and then on the principal side is you know I'm just up towards parents don't have let your children have sleepovers with people you don't know and even if there people that you do you know you know I truly believe that God there is something to be said about intuition and about that feeling of this just doesn't feel right and you gotta listen to it and you got it. Just like the right and I was told my kids that my click if you don't write Lehman.

I mean just say hey my mom that I got it out so those are just some of the things Chris that I would. I was given is good advice. Tonya and I think it's important to get off guilt for her kids need to know that we were safe place sometimes. I know I've been guilty were my kids were scared to tell me.this situation, but other things because if I'd say some dazzling get mad or the office stream is I don't want her mom and so we have to make it word they can feel like they are safe and coming to end up talking to us about these different issues. Let's all great advice Tonya appreciate you visit. It is such a problem in our country today and and we just need to be in prayer about it and we need to really be observant with our kids and and if there if the writing different. There is a reason that the right thing in and we have if you need to not worry about your obscene some careful auto auto clinic that I'm stalking them were the you don't want to make in my Outlook. God didn't give them to you to be their friend shortly want to be friends with our kids what your your safety otherwise were entrusted to you parents by God and you write is your job to take them.

No matter if they get mad at you or frustrated or whatever you need to protect them from dangerous situations of their young minds just don't comprehend or understand and implement child's my kids were medically, but I don't care about me.

Not much, rather than be mad at me, and in the rate or murder Guild or whatever it may be Tonya very sensitive that you know something this concerned me about this SBC business. It is an important issue that needs to be addressed so I'll get letters for this to speak words like I can't judge what I'm saying with her.

Also, in some ways almost looks like there's a witch going on from what I've been afraid is a liberal infiltration into the Southern Baptist convention and it looks to me like they themselves to the me to and if you don't want to dress certainly understand what do you get the feeling that the crowd become part of that me to movement as well. Let me just say that I want to make sure that you not the end of the day. This podcast is about where do we go from here, but I will say that there's a level of ignorance in my opinion that is occurring within specific blocks of the SBC and I think that you know this idea of church to and being associated with need to. I don't think nine. I want to get the benefit of the dot I don't have any idea of where the roots of that movement. I don't think that they understand that the founder and you know there's ties to the LGBT Q you know they do a lot of sensitivity training within their even if you just go to their website and take a look at it about Michael and Joy were litter so you're talking about, which will then meet you and me to movement to meet were slaves of the bed now know right now and then and now I'm saying that the meeting with Matt back when you hi how it needs to movement by doing hashtag church to things like that but the purpose for that.

What are you trying to say because honestly tying yourself to a radical feminist movement who had different values, family ate.

To me it is not productive. What were doing. You know a lot of the radical feminist are working heavily to break down the family and I'm very concerned about that thing that you know is concerning to me is that female balloons when you've been wounded specifically at the hands of man.

You have a propensity to be a man hater and I'm just going to be really honest with you Chris that that's how in my early upbringing. I was I didn't hate my husband.

I hate man that was very, very leery of their intention and if you don't address that you don't let God take that pain here and let them make you whole. You can have a propensity to get on a movement that Bassett and God never intended that I am very concerned that we would even associate with that kind of movement that I don't mean to brag to look like a break on talking to Tonya shall not alter how organization or individual is called social in a world crowded with viewpoints voice condition after a financial problem. Only one voice matters God's at the college of Mid-America and Mid-America seminary. We equip leaders to think for me biblical worldview online on our Memphis campus. Check out the College of Mid-America and Mid-America Baptist theological and be equipped to like the way this show is brought to you by generous Joe's coffee company with the Christian perspective, this is the answer that Christians and conservatives have been looking for a coffee company that gives back causes you care about. Order your copy today at shop generous Joe's daughter and even subscribe to a subscription coffee plan and never forget you or causes you care about time creating a relationship like rain sharing his light and joy United States America has a strong Christian heritage Americans don't know truly important role God in the Bible is American foundation, Dr. Chris Mason will embark on a journey of discovering the hidden much of America's Christian heritage up close and personal knowledge of all the government and the men who helped forge the new kind of Republic acknowledge the creator of the truth about the creation of the mounting father Christian principles to join you, wrote a book called Victor what was the goal of telling your story and what did you write the conference and and not conference. They were highlighting the victims which is important to bring awareness that what didn't happen, didn't talk about where do we go from here and they didn't talk about the power of the car and they didn't talk about the hope of Jesus Christ and that bothered me greatly because I know without a shadow of a cow. The only reason why God help me get where I am today because I didn't hear the healing power of Christ power of Christ and because I had why why pastor why husband to help me along my journey to heal and so I was like words like we can continue to foster the environment victimization. Even women need to have the hope of Jesus Christ because when you stay at baked it such a helpless feeling it affects so many families in a way I'm sure it had to be difficult for you and me probably share your story just before you wrote the book you with your husband and kids in your church probably had to be very difficult process you as well. You talk about victims in the book a lot today talk about victims feel powerless and Tonya is sometimes it seems like some people almost want to study a victim. Why do some victims want to stay powerless the situation so I think more often than not it's easy.

Easy to see honest. It is so painful to have to what happened in our past and look at it because it hurts and it brings back a flood of emotions and feelings that are very painful that you don't want to be associated with you. It is easy to just live in the victim role and to just you know to stay there because then you don't have to take a look at motion that there is no power.

There is no you know, encouragement.

There's no hope in staying the victim and fact, in my opinion it takes you to depression and anxiety.

Some definitions of a victim is the lack of trust difficulty forgetting they like it had have depression, anxiety, they lack coping skills that are very very here based on data expressed despair panic very suspicious, not characteristics that God wants us to live out so unfortunately I make it easy to be a victim and I would also say that our culture fosters victimization right. I think that I really do culture absolutely and it exceeds victims.

Because when you create victims where you keep people picked him easy to influence them or persuade them ideologically or politically or you know they think okay so we keep this block of victims here were going to come in and be the Savior and and fix this for them. And so it is unfortunately something that is occurring in our culture, which is not just from the sexual abuse standpoint but from a racial standpoint. From a you know sexual scam claiming victim victimization.

All of it is not biblical. God didn't want us to be victims and in so many even within the church just almost happiness of being a victim. Which I don't understand. Well, I forgot to do this will show how people find your book so you can just go to my website. Tonya shall and not the teepees on the Internet. I'm also on Amazon and on and on audible. You can book or you can order audible or it can whatever you prefer now is now just speaking of that, because I had to read my book for the audible act that way so that was one of the most painful things that I had never had to do. It was very painful because again you're reliving your experience right so it just goes back to when you're talking about writing the book and being bright pink. All I can remember you now. I where I fly a lot. I travel a lot for work and I would give most of my work on the airplane and I would be reviewing it.

There's a whole story about that gentleman help me write the book, he actually helped Bart Miller from Mercy me right has been Steven Curtis Chapman, a memoir he helped in my head.

It was just such a God can encapsulate the motion of everything and I can remember sitting on the plane reading these chapters and just crying my eyes out because it's so painful to read lips and so I just hope that people will will understand that you know God doesn't want does not want you to continue to live.

I'm in the pain of your past and be defined by the pack. He wants us to be defined by Christ empowered and filled with hope because like you said in the beginning when you asked me about my testimony that we have Is all that we have in God's story and not only keep it twice and when we live in the victimization place. We're not honoring God with what he's done powerful Tonya what's required for someone to overcome the sexual abuse what we been wounded. How do we get out of this victimization and how do we overcome what you did will first have a lot of prayer that secondly, it requires courage absolutely requires courage, encourages I don't remember who the code is that basically facing fear and doing it anyway. I mean at courage and you courage inspires people so you know if you're choosing to live in the victim role really inspiring anybody that when you face, you look at, you know people that have overcome those of the people that inspire and so that requires courage and I'm being scared and doing it anyway. John Wainwright dear me again get back on the same thing and then you have to be very healing is not just please Lord how it's a process that the journey that it's a beautiful journey. I mean, I think that that's I just get kept up thinking about God's beautiful heat broken and has put me in a place now where I get to have the privilege of ensuring justice for the most gonna go ensuring protections are in place for our future generation. Only God that I had to lean into that I had to be very intentional in seeking healing because it would've been very easy to revert back to alcohol or some of the old ways of thinking that God was just gracious and said no, no, my way is better.

You know there's a book in the Bible Isaiah 55 89 Ray said you're in ways are not my way. Your thoughts are not my thoughts as higher as the heavens of the earth are. I'm probably just flattered the whole thing, but the whole point of it is that for many years. I think questioning why we cannot allow something like this. Why would a loving God allow for me to be sexually abused and harmed. Why does not sound like a loving God and my very very wise-led me Tonya.

Are you can lift here on earth, always questioning why are you just can choose to believe that God has a purpose for your pain or tough words to swallow good advice, not just social before with other things that people have as well.

We talked about being wounded in you that woundedness can also lead to anger and cause us to doubt God is you're saying. How do we overcome because I'm assuming you probably were mad at God's will have value over my entire took a while really did take a while. I had have always felt like I was the black sheep. Even in my family. Could my birth father laughed didn't have any siblings that were being on the same and I just always thought a place in Titusville like God was just punishing me like the monthly and Job 13 as though he slay me, I will trust in you and I spent a lot of time in Joe back it relates to Joe a lot and even though Job lost everything. He still trusted in the Lord for me. I just had to keep trusting in the Lord that he had a purpose for the pain now by no means was that easy. And every day with different type I journaled a lot craft and I was able to go back and read my journal and go. Oh God answer my prayer here and here. He just kept showing me favor and blessing you know there certainly were many hardships along that journey guy just you know an inch and even as as latest 2016 credits I was dealing with some of the you know the depression from thinking God hated me and again it was just got me leaning into God and trusting and believing that he had something better and I can imagine that I am where I am today and that I get to do it. I get you today and I believe it is because I didn't give up and I just kept pressing in and leaning into the Lord and seeking him a powerful story Tonya or something that you would like to encourage pastors is there dealing with these issues in the church. Be brave. It is the truth that sets us free and if someone told me the truth about Jesus Christ. I wouldn't be here today so I just want to encourage you to keep speaking truth. I want to encourage you to get equipped be equipped to be able to handle some of the difficult issues. Remember to face them head on.

Just that they're uncomfortable and painful. And no one likes to talk about this issue, but because we have such a ramp that issue in our country and within the SEC now more than ever we need holy courage from our pastors to face this issue head on and to address it and to be equipped to address what a powerful story. Tonya thank you for under the said to be difficult to talk about with thank you for joining us.

The Christian perspective. Thank you Chris. I'm very honored and I appreciate all that you do folks the book is called wounded and defined victim to Victor. You can find it. Tonya shall with duties.

Tonya shall or at Amazon. You can also get it alterable and get to hear Tonya sure her story of her own voice. Please get this book. It is important sexually hear the show was for more about this is the Christian perspective. Learn more about impacting culture for Jesus.

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