Many, many years ago Yannick and I were ministry leaders in a non-denominational cult, brilliantly disguised as a church, that went by the name; The International Churches of Christ. We learned a great many things from these people, the bible, and the leaders. Some of it good, some of it not so good. When we left, it was because a brother in Christ, who had been put over our finances, because why would you give a worldly person a job, and your money, when you could employ a brother in Christ?
We were twenty five, we wanted to do right by God, and we were dumb with money. We’re both artists, enough said. So we did as they suggested, fired our perfectly brilliant, lovely, kind, honest accountant, and hired a brother in Christ. A brother who had no idea what he was doing when it came to filing taxes for clients who had to pay taxes in both the U.S and Canada…suffice it to say, he fucked up. HUGE. The mess was left in our laps, and we paid the price.
Then we left the church, well I left first, alone, because I was much more furious about it all than Yannick was. Also by now he was so brainwashed with the fear that God only resided there, in that particular ministry, that he couldn’t bring himself to “leave God.” I believed differently. I believed that there was no way that any God would believe that how we were handled, how our money had been so poorly managed, with nobody having any integrity to take ownership of that, along with being hung out to dry, was not Godly in the slightest. I had great faith that God had long left that building, if he had ever lived there at all.
But I digress, this post is NOT about how we lost everything, and ended up in debt to the IRS, while the “brother” had paid himself well over $20,000 to apparently “handle” our finances. This post is about the weirdness that I experienced by the men in the congregation who obviously lived by the Billy Graham “rule” that Mike Pence also lives by. In fact, many of the wives did as well. I recall very vividly two wives, who were “over me in the Lord” pulling me into a meeting, to tell me that I had to be much more mindful of how I dressed, how I wore my hair, and how I talked with the husband’s of the congregation. They had been told by other women in the church that I was causing many husbands “to struggle” with the sin of lust.
I’m responsible for your husband’s inability to not control his own thoughts about me??? Ahhh, WTAF are you talking about crazy church ladies. No, I don’t think that’s how it works. I mean it wasn’t like I was strutting into Wednesday night bible study in thigh high boots, daisy duke shorts, and a bikini top. I was a young mom of two little girls, I wore sweats A LOT, wore my hair in a ponytail, and mostly never wore make up. Regardless of how I actually dressed, what if I had dressed in the thigh high get up, I still don’t get how your man’s thoughts were my problem. It was a huge eye opener for me, and for about one week I truly beat myself up because in my heart I believed that I was leading my “brothers” astray. Plus I was young, only twenty-two, and my past experience with men, attempting to take whatever they wanted from me already had me thinking that it must be something I was doing. That I was the problem. Then it dawned on me. When I drew that comparison I was able to come to the same conclusion that I had about the abuse. The abuse happened to me because of the men refusing to control their own urges, not due to anything that I had done to provoke it. Once I had that squarely in my mind, I was able to walk with confidence knowing that that shit was all on them, and they better get it straight in their own head to preserve their relationship with God.
Now with all this hoopla surrounding the Mike Pence, “won’t eat with a woman alone” bullshit that’s raging all over the internet it takes me right back to that moment in time, in my own life where I experienced first hand Godly men, who wanted to put the shame of their “ungodly” urges on the backs of women. I wonder if one of those women who pulled me aside into the meeting was ever told by her husband how he kissed me square on the mouth while saying goodbye to me at the airport when Yannick, and our two girls were flying to move to New Zealand??? You see, the issue wasn’t me, I’d never given a single thought to this man, never mind thought about kissing him on the lips. Judging by the way he came in so hot first excuse he had to do so, points to the fact that the attraction, the struggle was all on him. But I bet you if she was told that he kissed me on the mouth, she would still find a way to blame me.
You see in my humble opinion this is a character issue; for men, and women alike. If you know you have a strong moral character, if you know you respect, love, honor, and cherish your wife, and don’t sexualize females, then what’s the big deal of being in the company of women on alone, or where there is alcohol being served? My husband has to roll around, and make out with beautiful women for a LIVING. Why don’t you put that in your pipe and smoke it Mike Pence!
Strong moral character, is strong moral character, is strong moral character regardless of the situation a man is put in. But, hey, this is just my two cents and it’s my blog, so I have the floor.