I have some issues with you and a deep, profound love for you.
It was through you, Church, that I found hope and purpose. My life was forever transformed inside your walls. I used to be an anxiety-ridden, self-sufficient, control freak. Now, I am more like someone who loves and trusts others with an open heart, free from fear. Or at least that was what I thought.
I thought we were friends until you turned your back on me when I needed you the most. Five years ago the sexual addiction of my husband was discovered, and the sexual betrayal for me started.
My husband and I turned to you, Church.
My husband and I hoped to find love, community, and help. Yet that is not our story. Unfortunately, I am finding that this is the case for many of the couples I know who are on this healing journey of sexual addiction & betrayal.
So instead of complaining about you, Church. I would like to start a conversation with you. Through this, I hope you can hear my heart of deep love for you.
Church, why are you so concerned about your image?
Why is there not more space and time devoted to hard biblical teachings?
Why is it that you feel like a performance or a concert?
Church, it looks like you are so concerned about the good things God offers to us rather than the state of our souls. Why is that?
I simply wish that we were more concerned about being a hospital rather than being relevant to culture. Church, do you see what I am saying?
The more I read the Gospels the more I see Jesus be counter-cultural. He flipped tables. He spoke truth in love.
And my question to you is simply this: have we traded in truth for an easy love?
Listen, I get it, it is hard to teach Biblical sexual identity. It is hard and messy to walk with individuals through healing journeys of addiction, betrayal, and identity. But I never see Jesus shying away from teaching truth in love.
I never see Jesus afraid to share what purity means. Jesus offended many people because they didn’t understand REAL love. Jesus loved so many, including prostitutes and tax collectors. It was the truth he spoke that brought them out of that lifestyle.
Church, are you speaking like Jesus? Because I am not always seeing it. Have you forgotten that it can be loving to tell the truth? Or, as the Church, are you more concerned about not offending people?
Yes, I was hurt by you. But I would rather see you functioning the way Jesus laid out for you.
I want to be a part of the solution, not just a finger-pointer, so here are a few ideas I would like to request of you:
Can we make JESUS the focus again?
Stop the silence when someone expresses sin or hurt. Instead can we, Church, practice empathy?
Can we start to stand hand in hand with the prostitutes, the John’s, and the wounded of sexual addiction? Jesus did.
Can we be the change the world needs right now?
Plain and simple: Church, can you please help be a part of the solution rather than remaining silent in fear of offending people? Can you drop the “white picketed fence” facade?
Everyone is hurting.
Everyone has issues and yet we still feel the need to put a mask on before entering the doors of the church.
Church, why do you think people are responding like that? It may be the unrealistic or unspoken expectations you have presented to the world. Church, you are not perfect. Do you see that?
Sin is sin no matter the type of sin. People are hurting and searching for ways to make the pain stop. Church, let’s start to be the first place they look for help rather than the last.
The reality is that sexual addiction is an issue in our culture and within you, Church. It is not something to be ignored anymore. We cannot pretend that being a Christian does not make us immune to it.
Can you please start taking real steps towards helping people heal from this addiction and trauma that comes with it?
Church, I believe in you. I believe you can.
It is my hope that couples and individuals impacted by sex addiction would have a different experience than my husband and I did with you. We want to help be the solution the world is looking for now.
Will you allow us to help? Or would you prefer to continue pretending everything is ok?
– The Wife of a Recovering Sex Addict, Andrea Schaap