I forgot to list a couple of verses in my last post that were used in Michael Pearl’s “Moral Earnestness Test:”
- And Adam was not the one deceived; it was the woman who was deceived and became a sinner. – 1 Timothy 2:14 (This is where I got the idea of not trusting my mind.)
- Like Sarah, who obeyed Abraham and called him her lord. You are her daughters if you do what is right and do not give way to fear. – 1 Peter 3:6 (Not to fear consequences for submitting even while the husband is making foolish decisions.)
Writing these posts have been quite a bit triggering for me personally. Michael and Debi Pearl’s marriage teaching created a sort of abuse and Stockholm Syndrome situation disguised as Christianity. I will even go as far as saying it became tantamount to idolatry. It duped my husband to become entitled, narcissistic, and a tyrant. Needless to say, It didn’t make him a better, more mature spiritual leader. It hurt him. It hurt us. It hurt me. I was living a life of bondage which turned into another gospel, another message, a different spirit. It didn’t make sense with the rest of the Word of God.
A few years ago my husband scolded me for wanting to follow my gut to end a friendship with a woman I met on the internet. I don’t need to go into the story too detailed here but I believe she was a psychopath or at least a malignant narcissist. The way she idealized me, devalued and discarded me, after me giving her moral support for a year… It gave me PTSD.
Then I discovered this verse:
Walk with the wise and become wise, for a companion of fools suffers harm. – Proverbs 13:20 (I can’t be keeping company with anyone who exhibits behavior of a fool as described in the Bible whether a friend or spouse, God warns His children. So boundaries are key!)
Around that time in the same year another blogging friend I knew for two years prior told me her husband was evil and had been abusing her and their many children and that he was leaving them. That gave me empathically induced PTSD too!
I think, at least in part, the PTSD caused me to start distrusting my own husband. I was no longer feeling safe with him as my umbrella of protection. I was sensing that something wasn’t right even more than ever. I was realizing I was in somewhat of an abusive marriage situation, both financially and emotionally. God didn’t seem to be paying too much attention to us either. One thing lead to another and our church paid for us to get counseling using a John Gottman Institute trained counselor. It helped us a lot!
Around that time, I got a big bruise that lasted a month and became a hematoma. This was caused by jumping out of bed and hitting my knee on the bed frame. I got a phone call thinking it was my husband and I wasn’t doing the housework. I had been relaxing instead so when I got the phone call I jumped out of bed and that’s how I hurt myself. I was contemplating about that hematoma on my leg realizing I was afraid because I feared telling my husband I was relaxing. You see, I had a ‘fake-it-’till-you-make-it’ system. A facade of being Super-wife that I was striving to keep up, while also thinking again God is not protecting me like I’m used to. Why? Then, a thought came to my mind:
God is a jealous God and He is jealous for me. Around that time I found this Bible verse:
- Fear of man will prove to be a snare but whoever trusts in the Lord is kept safe. – Proverbs 29:25
Oh my gosh! You don’t know how relieved I was! God was revealing stuff I needed to realize! It then occurred to me something I knew and practiced before the Pearl teaching, was that scripture trumps my husband. Awesome! So since then it’s been a few years and I’ve been studying a bit of apologetics and egalitarian hermeneutics. It’s stuff I was interested in, but Debi Pearl made it seem like I wasn’t supposed to be interested in anything other than being an over-accommodating wife and mother. So that was the beginning of the end of my unnecessary marriage troubles. Now my husband says he likes me better with a backbone! 😜
That’s a glimpse of my personal story, but I want to refer everybody to a blog called: createdtobehelpmeet.blogspot.com. It’s an excellently done review of the book. I don’t have the book anymore, so I couldn’t really take it apart and give you a nice detailed review about it. All I did was share how it harmed, more than helped, our marriage and our spiritual well being.