I’d already requested an interview with Anne Graham Lotz when I read Zondervan’s press release regarding her newest book; Wounded by God’s People.
My first thought was, “Huh? Right! You’ve got to be kidding! What would Billy Graham’s daughter know about being wounded from so-called “God’s people?” If there’s anyone who has been sheltered from being wounded by the ‘Church’ it’s got to be Anne Graham Lotz, daughter of the much-admired and beloved Billy Graham.
Adding to my suspicions was the fact that the press release didn’t list a single specific wound Anne had supposedly endured. Therefore, I couldn’t help but wonder; “Has Anne truly experienced the penetrating pain and humiliation of being wounded by ‘God’s people’? Does Anne really understand what it’s like to be wounded by so-called Christians?” Because if there’s anyone who does understand the pain of being ‘ripped to shreds’ by ‘God’s people ’… it’s me. And it’s my sister-in-law, and my second cousin, and two nursing friends … and that’s just to list a few of the people I know who’ve been personally traumatized by ‘God’s people’.
Along with the press release I’d also received an advance copy of Anne’s book. In preparation for the interview and to learn about thenon-specified wounds ‘God’s people’ had inflicted on Anne; I settled down in my favorite chair and began reading Anne’s newest book.
A couple of hours later, and the table next to my favorite chair is littered with an empty soda can, three fun-size Snickers’ wrappings, and a wad of mucus and tear stained tissues. And I‘m on my knees by my chair, thanking God for Anne’s courage and determination to expose the pain that’s been, and continues to be, unfairly inflicted on multitudes, by ‘God’s people’. Anne shares several personal wound stories in the book. Some of which I was surprised she shared.
But even if she hadn’t shared personal traumas, it’s clearly obvious the book required stupendous endurance and courage to not only undertake but to finish. Yet, a Holy Spirit empowered Anne Graham Lotz, did complete the book; and she did it in a way to give honor and glory to God. Therefore, Wounded by God’s People will be used as a catalyst to allow the healing process to begin for millions of believers and unbelievers.
Following are a few excerpts from Wounded by God’s People.
“I can’t tell you how many times I have cried deep tears that shook my whole body because of painful things that happened to me in my church … I was so hurt I stopped attending church for a good while …”
“But the first time I remember being more seriously wounded by those who called themselves Christians was in the ninth grade. My parents had sent me off to a Christian boarding school where my older sister was also in attendance …. When I developed a close friendship with another student as a buffer to the mistreatment, the headmistress actually accused me of having homosexual tendencies. I didn’t even know what a homosexual was.”
“Run to God and cling to Him. God understands every verbal barb, every covert injustice, every emotional shard, every leering look, every jeering smirk. But He also keeps the books, and one day He will make everything right.”
“… I refuse to let religious phonies destroy my heart for the One who loves me and draws close to me when I am wounded. I refuse to be robbed of life’s greatest treasure — a personal, permanent, passionate relationship with God through faith in Jesus.”
Readers, if you’ve been wounded by a ‘God person’ or a group of ‘God’s People’ along with reading the Bible, prayerfully consider reading Anne’s new book, Wounded by God’s People.
— Debra Wallace is an inspirational columnist and speaker. You may contact Debra by calling 252-568-3453 or online at www.debrawallace.com.