black and white bible, black and blue wife
My Story of Finding Hope after Domestic Abuse
Ruth A. Tucker
Copyright © 2016 by Ruth Tucker
Published by Zondervan, Grand Rapids, Michigan
In my offerings of 'free' books to review, I am always allowed to choose those books I prefer. Those books that I choose usually are books that are of subjects I enjoy reading. This book was different. This book chose me.
From 1975 to 1990 I was in an abusive marriage. Like Ms. Tucker, I sought solace in the only way I could find. Through writing. I have kept a diary, (I prefer to say 'journal') for most of my life. They sit in a neat little row on my book case, as I prefer pen and ink to the computer.
For years after my divorce from my ex-husband, I had nightly, or near nightly, nightmares of being beaten, or emotionally beaten down to the point where I was less than human. Having married my husband now, I listened to a minister one Sunday morning who said that if we are carrying around this old baggage and we were "stuck" in the remembrance of that, we needed to find a way to "unpack the bags".
That resonated with me in such a way that the very next day I discussed it with my new husband. He encouraged me to write it all down, and pour out the hurt, in my journals.
And I did. "One Wing In The Fire" (self published 2008) was born. I didn't write it for monetary gain. I wrote it for those who were being physically and emotionally abused. I wrote it so that if it but touched one life, prevented one woman, or man, from staying in such a situation, it would be worth any humiliation I might have in the telling of the tale.
I have been blessed with many women telling me that the book touched them. And a few sought shelter and left abusive relationships because of it.
Ms. Tucker's book, sought me out. I saw it in my reading selections, and I left it there. The title grabbed me from first glance. But my heart told me, no. Don't read it. Don't choose that book. You don't want to relive that nightmare again.
But still, the book remained in the reading cue. It sat there until one day, I noted that there was but a single copy left for review. And without allowing myself time to rethink, I ordered it.
When it arrived, I devoured the book in a single sitting.
Ms. Tucker's debate was rambling, and at times I wasn't sure just whose side she was on! She repeatedly debates whether the woman is the head of her own body or not. Or rather, the man is the head, as the Bible commands us.
The debate is whether the Bible demands the man is the head of the woman's body, and can bring "punishment" or not.
I have poured my heart out over this scripture and find nothing to tell us that the man has charge of "punishment" over a woman. But rather the opposite. The husband is to honor his wife, as the wife is to honor her husband. He is to submit to her and she to him.
I have spent many hours, nay, years, contemplating and praying over the scriptures with this. And it is my firm belief that this is meant for couples to be complimentary of one another, and to be in an agreement with one another. It is for peace and harmony in the home.The argument is that the Scripture reads that the wife is to submit to the husband as the church submits to Christ.
My argument back is that Christ allows us to have free will. We are to choose to follow Him. Not be beaten into following Him. And as such, wives should choose to submit to their husband. Or rather to be in agreement with him. That does not mean that if the wife does something that he doesn't like, or disproves, that he should take physical action against her. And likewise, she should not take physical action against him!
I kept going round and round with Ms. Tucker, until I finally realized what she was doing in her writing. She was opening us up for debate. Opening us up to discuss physical and emotional abuse in a Christian home, as Christian brothers and sisters, without fear of feeling we would become ostracized from within our Christian societies for opening that particular tin of worms!
Are we, men and women, truly equal? Does God want us to be equal? What does the Scripture really say about equality among the sexes? And is "punishment" ever warranted? Should a woman (or man) ever stay in an abusive situation?
Ms. Tucker tackles these questions with bravado. She tells us about her own abuse, without the gory details. She gives us the facts. She was physically abused. And, like most good Christian women, unsure of what she should do. Until she felt she had no further course of action to take.
For myself, it came down to me being afraid that if he didn't kill me, I would one day kill him in self defense. I prayed for the right way to end it. And God showed me the way, or rather handed me the way. I worked the night shift as a nurse, and came home one morning to find his belongings packed by the back door. Fifteen years and five small children from the time we married, he told me he had to go "find" himself. It was the kindest thing he ever did for me.
Again, this was not a book that I chose to read. But that chose me. And it has opened the door for debate and discussion, both in the home and in the church.
I give this book...
Big Thumbs Up.
I also give it my...
Highly Recommended Award.
This book is suitable for individual and group reads. However, I warn you, debates will happen, whoever you share it with! You can purchase the book here on Amazon.com It is available in paperback, MP3 format, and for the Kindle reader. I read the paperback. Believe me, you won't want to put it down.
DISCLAIMER: This book was provided in exchange for a fair and non-biased review by Amazon Vine. The above opinions are solely that of the author of this blog.