About the Book
Book title: Wounded in the Church
Authors: Ray Beeson & Chris Hayward
Release date: March 14, 2017
My Thoughts: I rarely read books like Wounded in the Church. Theology just doesn’t appeal to me. When the Celebrate Lit team was asking for more people to sign up for this book, though, and I saw that we would still be in America when they sent out paper copies of the book, I decided to sign up and see what this book was like.
The authors have a lot of good points. They show how people in the church can be just like anyone else. Christians should be loving and caring, right, no matter what kind of people cross their paths? Well, unfortunately, quite often Christians act in unloving ways, ending up wounding people even within the church. The authors showed quite effectively how this happens. I felt disappointed, though, that no real solutions were presented. I kept looking for advice for how to cope when you have been “wounded”, but either I overlooked it, or it wasn’t there as clearly as I had thought it would be. On the other hand, there was a chapter of common cliches Christians use, which I found quite thought-provoking. We need to be very careful what we say and how we say it. On the whole, I didn’t find this book overly helpful, although there were several points that really stood out, which I believe will be useful for the rest of my life.
The Authors’ Synopsis:
Church should be a safe place, right? Then why do so many get hurt there?
Ray Beeson and Chris Hayward combine their years of ministry experience to address head-on the elephant in the room: church members and church leaders hurt Christians. All the time. And the long-lasting effects—rejection, shame, despair, loneliness, fear—can be devastating. The authors have witnessed the rise of the “dones,” those who are just done with God thanks to scars from church.
With first-person stories of hurt and loss, this book is a wake-up call for any who deny woundedness in the church but is also a redemptive message for any who hurt from church wounds. Leaders and laypeople alike will learn how to grieve over abuse, to leave unhealthy attitudes and patterns that cause pain, and to trust in God’s real, delivering work through churches that build up, not tear down.
Thanks to the grace of God, there is always hope beyond the pain.
About the Authors:
Ray Beeson is the director of Overcomers Ministries, a teaching ministry with a special emphasis on spiritual warfare and prayer. Ray teaches seminars on spiritual warfare, prayer, and Christlike living and is the author of numerous books including Signed in His Blood (Charisma House, 2014) and The Hidden Price of Greatness (Overcomers, 2000). Ray and his wife, Linda, live in Ventura, CA.
Chris Hayward has had over thirty-six years of pastoral ministry and is currently serving as president of Cleansing Stream Ministries, a discipleship ministry that works with the local church around the world. He is also the author of God’s Cleansing Stream (Chosen Books, 2004) and The End of Rejection(Chosen Books, 2007). Chris and his wife, Karen, live in Castaic, CA.
Guest Post from Ray Beeson & Chris Hayward:
When we tell people we’ve written a book entitled “Wounded in the Church,” many nod knowingly. Sadly, the pain and heartache that happens in churches is all too common. Collectively, the two of us have spent more than 70 years in ministry. During that time we have seen neglect, tactlessness, and blatant insensitivity fostered by some leaders and congregations resulting in the wounding of others. We realize it is not prolific in every church, but the wounding is significant and it needs to be exposed. That is why we wrote this book – we share real stories of real people who were wounded in church, a place that should be a shelter of God’s love and peace. Sometimes people are abused by leaders or church members. There are also times when leaders are abused by people within the congregation. As you read, perhaps you’ll identify with some of the situations described. If so, be assured you are not alone. If you have been wounded, it is our hope and prayer God uses this book to facilitate healing. Because of Jesus Christ, there is hope beyond the pain.
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Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from the author for my honest review, which I have given. I was not required to write a positive review and have not been compensated for it in any way. All opinions expressed are my own.