I admit to  my tendency to be codependent. Acceptance and belonging have always been at the top of my emotional needs, and I struggled through the steps of recovery to figure out where it all began. Watching my dream of being loved and cherished in a marriage melt away took years to unfold. I never expected a similar breakup to occur with my church, but it did. The hurt from both is lasting and deep. Healing began for me when I was able to give the pain to Jesus and rest in His perfect justice.

Forgiveness is required. For me it doesn’t include being asked to forgive. It doesn’t mean that I condone the wrong that was done. It doesn’t force me to stay in relationship with my abuser. It is between me and my Lord. It does mean that I hand over the right of exacting justice to Jesus.

I still had to readjust my life, reconcile the changes and start a new dream. I’m not sure true healing takes place until I forgive and God repurposes the pain. Similar to the story of Joseph, what his brothers meant for evil, God used for good. If you’ve seen your dream crushed, recover through forgiving and allow God to plant a new purpose in your heart. Start that new dream.


“It seemed like I was living the ideal Christian life, giving to the church and serving. I started leading in the divorce support group ministry and then branched out to lead in the Celebrate Recovery ministry, eventually taking the position of assistant ministry leader. I spoke at women’s conferences and taught the occasional Sunday school class. Truly, I was what every Christian should be, proving my past accuser wrong, right? Wrong! My perspective soon turned “in the blink of an eye,” as Scripture says, and I found myself faced once again with the shell of a dream. To the best of my understanding, from the depth of researching the documents from that time period and from recalling my reactions and ponderings, here is my interpretation of seeing an established church diminish from unwise church policy and then crumble under the weight of the news that a former youth pastor had been charged with seven counts of sodomy against two young boys.” (Taylor, Joy S., The View From the Pews — The Inside Story of a Broken Church, 2022, Lily of the Valley Publishing, Santa Claus IN, p. 23.)

This is for the victims. #aviewfromthepews

A View From the Pews is available on Amazon.