It’s now been more than four months since the lockdown started.
As some mental health professions say, many people responded positively during the first two months of the lockdown; people enjoyed staying home and not going to school or work.
However, now they are seeing the number of people with mental and emotional ailments increase at an alarming rate. Many people lost their jobs and they’re receiving unemployment benefits from the government. But that by itself cannot solve the problem. They are still in their houses/apartments, unable to go anywhere.
This reality is becoming a source of great stress. And some express their stress and anxiety in prayers, spending time with others online; some men express their stress in anger and aggression against women and children.
This is the sad reality of our time everywhere, especially in countries such as Ethiopia. And who is talking about it?
Sadly enough, ONLY W.H.O (World Health Organization).
The Church is silent! Why?
I don’t know!
Many men are physically, verbally, emotionally, mentally and sexually abusing women and little children.
Little girls and little boys as young as five are raped by fully grown men and this situation is getting worse by the hour.
It is so sad.
Christian women in this situation are silent. Why?
Many reasons and here are a few of them:
1. They think it is the will of God for them to quietly go through this.
I am not sure where they learned this. I don’t know which “will of God” they are talking about.
It is not the will of God for women and her little children to suffer and die at the hands of the man who was called by God to take care of them. The will of God is for the husband/father to protect, love, and provide to his wife and his children, not to abuse them.
2. These women don’t know if there is a different life than the one they have.
They cannot see life beyond their situation.
Unless somebody shows them the light, they are in total darkness.
3. They are afraid to report to the police because they think the Christian community as a whole will condemn them for doing so.
Most of these abusive husbands have likable personalities outside the house. So others look at them as “nice people.” If the women who are under them report to the authorities against them, the women think that the whole Christian community will be against them. Unfortunately, they have some truth because this is a very common reality in the Habesha communities (Ethiopians and Eritreans). So, they keep quiet!
But we have to let these women know that we do not condemn them. We understand the!
4. Most of these women know this verse by heart:
“For I hate divorce,” says the Lord,” Malachi 2:16a
This is the one verse they think they need to live by. They believe that if they live against this verse, if they run away from their husbands, God will hate them forever.
This is a very, very sad kind of belief.
What these women don’t know is the whole passage of this particular verse came from:
““This is another thing you do: you cover the altar of the Lord with tears, with weeping and with groaning, because He no longer regards the offering or accepts it with favor from your hand. Yet you say, ‘For what reason?’ Because the Lord has been a witness between you and the wife of your youth, against whom you have dealt treacherously, though she is your companion and your wife by covenant. But not one has done so who has a remnant of the Spirit. And what did that one do while he was seeking a godly offspring? Take heed then to your spirit, and let no one deal treacherously against the wife of your youth. For I hate divorce,” says the Lord, the God of Israel, “and him who covers his garment with wrong,” says the Lord of hosts. “So take heed to your spirit, that you do not deal treacherously.”” Malachi 2:13-16 NASB
What God hates actually is the man who treats his wife treacherously.
God is warning the men here, saying to them that God does not accept anything from them, whether it be worship or praise , from men who abuse their wives.
Peter echoes this message this way:
“You husbands in the same way, live with your wives in an understanding way, as with someone weaker, since she is a woman; and show her honor as a fellow heir of the grace of life, so that your prayers will not be hindered.” 1 Peter 3:7 NASB
If a husband wants his prayers to be heard by God, he has to take good care of his wife.
Many abused Christian women don’t know this truth.
Actually many Christian women don’t know this truth. So if a woman who is in an abusive relationship comes to them for advice, they push her back to her abusive husband saying, “God hates divorce.”
This is the sad reality our time. Many women are far away from the truth of God. What is even worse is this: they think they know the truth of God and they add and multiply the sufferings for many abused women.
5. Most of these women, women in an abusive
relationship/marriage, are depressed but they are scared to seek help or see a psychiatrist.
They are scared of their husbands who will most likely label them as “crazy” and badmouth them if they found out.
So, they live with depression and guess what?
They too start abusing their little ones.
6. The other sad reason why these Christian women stay in an abusive marriage is they think they can change their husbands with only
This is nothing but insanity!
So what can we women do to help them?
First, we too have to know the truth. We first need to armor ourselves with the truth of God as the word of God commands us:
“ Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God.” Colossians 3:16 NASB
Second, let’s share with them what we know to be the truth of God. Let’s say to them, “Your husband is sick and you need to save yourself and your little one from him. You cannot heal him from his sickness by praying. He has to be the one to seek his healing. You should not die here waiting for his healing. You should not let your little ones die at this small age.”
Third, tell her that God hates divorce, but tell her what else God hates and share with her Malachi 2:13-16 and Proverbs 6:16-19 that says,
“There are six things which the Lord hates,
Yes, seven which are an abomination to Him:
Haughty eyes, a lying tongue,
And hands that shed innocent blood,
A heart that devises wicked plans,
Feet that run rapidly to evil,
A false witness who utters lies,
And one who spreads strife among brothers.” Proverbs 6:16-19 NASB
Fourth, share with her ways she can save herself and her little ones.
The one phone number you need to share with her is the National Domestic Violence Hotline toll number: 1-800-799-7233. If she is in a situation where she is afraid to make a call, share with her the number that she can text: LOVEIS to this number: 1-866-331-9747.
Check on her if she gets help. Offer to her any help that you can provide.
This is the conclusion I arrived in situations like this: It is we women who can save these women and their little ones.
Nobody else! ///