Mandatory Year-end Blog Post 2015

Well, I did some stuff this year.

I read a lot of books and a couple of them made me cry. (Not, like, wimpy tears, like tough-badass-bitch tears).

My sister and I took a trip that wound up being weirdly therapeutic and obnoxiously humid. (We both cheated on our low-sugar diet during that trip. Actually, I’m still cheating on it 6 months later… so, oops? Also, my jeans have shrunk.)

I did a lot of writing. Some of it didn’t totally suck. (Some of it totally did.)

I drove an hour just to see a giant crucifix at a Catholic shrine with my hardcore Anabaptist, ex-Catholic mother. (It was pretty great.)

Cross in the Woods

I’m too lazy to come out with a clever segue (really, what’s going to top a 28′ tall Jesus?), so here’s the top 5 list.

Top Five Most Viewed Posts

That Time a Fellow Church Member Wanted to Murder Me

I wasn’t sure what kind of reaction I’d get to posting this and almost deleted the whole thing, but writing this post was one of the best things I’ve done. It opened the door for me to work on some issues I’ve had on the back burner for a long time and I’ve heard from people who say it’s helped them not to feel like they’re alone in what they’re dealing with. I’m currently about 3/4 of the way through a first draft of a memoir that covers this period of time. I definitely wouldn’t be working on that if I hadn’t gotten so much interest and support after clicking that PUBLISH button on this post back in February (and then going, “Oh shit! What did I just do?!”) Sometimes being reckless and impulsive pays off, kids.

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“I noticed something in my family’s church mailbox. It was an obituary that had been cut out of the paper. He’d replaced the person’s name with my name. The police couldn’t protect me. My church council refused to even believe I was in danger. I didn’t want to just wait around until he murdered me or my family.”

 

A Halfway House for Post-traumatic Church Disorder Survivors

Sometimes I feel ridiculous for being afraid of churches. Like, what, are the pews going to come to life and drown me in the baptismal? (Actually, that does sound pretty freaky…) I wrote this to both poke a little fun at myself (this is an accurate account of how I visit a church) and as a defense against all the people out there who love to get all up in my business and tell me to park it in a pew. The reaction I got to this post was surprising. I had no idea there were so many other people out there who feel the same way I do. I don’t know what the solution is, but it’s a real problem when so many people are scared of church when they’re not necessarily scared of Jesus.

14926229827_a9d4ada8c6_k“I’ve gotten some flack for not attending church, but where do you go when church isn’t a safe place?”

 

 

 

 

Faith in the Eye of a Shitstorm

I said it on Facebook, and I’ll say it here, I really think this post was popular because it has the word “shitstorm” in the tile. You are all 12-year-olds and I love you.

“I’m supposed to say those hardships strengthened my faith. That I felt closer to God. That it gave me perspective or I had some sort of epiphany. But none of that happened. I didn’t feel closer to God. I felt ignored by God.”

 

 

True Love Waits (a little while)

Hey, everyone! It’s the post about sex! (We’re all still 12, right?) The 90s Youth Group Kids are all grown up now and some of us are a little scarred by our old purity pledges.

Love By Freely Photos“We’d garbled the gospel until it sounded like purity pledges and elevator pitch testimonies. Grace wasn’t in our vocabulary.”

 

 

 

Why My Stalker Was Never Arrested

After I wrote the first post in February about that whole stalking situation, I spent a good chunk of 2015 exploring that time of my life and trying to figure out how it could get so bad. I’ve done a lot of homework this year. I’ve dug into theological reasons (OMG, y’all, stay away from Christian Reconstructionists), cultural reasons (I’m so glad Y2K isn’t a thing anymore), and legal reasons. When people ask me about being stalked or make comments, usually they want to know about the legal reasons, so I wrote this post to explain that side of things.

“The activity in my case escalated very quickly from harassment to death threats. His attitude moved from wanting to have me to wanting to kill me in a matter of weeks.”

 

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