Family secrets

Aarron Messer: In His Own Words

This is a letter Aarron Messer posted on his personal Facebook page last month. He has agreed to share it with my readers.


“I waited till after I spoke with my brother before sharing this. My brother and I were raised in the same home but while we are close in age we experienced greatly different impressions of our parents over the past few years. You may not find that when you get done reading this but my world has been turned upside down and I am just trying to grasp it.

This article, Daily Journal Online: Son shares another perspective on disappearance is his (Abram’s) story—his sentiment. I can’t say there isn’t another side to much of the content of the stories he shares; there is. I know that the content is true even though I didn’t see it as abuse at the time. However, from my perspective there are things you should know.

My ex-wife and I don’t agree on much, but you can ask her—I have always felt that the most important thing to me in my former marriage was to not be my father. I have never wanted to make excuses but I never knew a different set of parents than mine. So I only knew them as they were, while I never liked my father’s dominant control over my mother it was just the way it was and it was what my mother accepted.

I was just as blind to the abuse as I am sure my mother was. I have always considered my father’s attitude toward my mom as off and distasteful. I have been very frustrated and angry at him in the past for the way he treated her in private. To be completely open with you when I married at 19 I was desperate to treat my wife any way but the way he treated my mom.

The little things like the way he called her, “woman.” The way he referred to her in an analogy in a family wide text message after my mother’s hip replacement surgery, when she had trouble and had a fever, he didn’t tell us mom has a fever, he jokingly talked about her as if she was a car at the mechanic and her temp was running high. It made my stomach sick.

A few years back when I was pastoring, my mother had a rather lengthy private discussion with me about wives and submitting to your husband biblically. She expressed concern because she believed it was her duty to do what her husband says even if it meant doing something you believed to be sinful because it was on your husband if he told you to do wrong. Your duty is to obey him. She was seemingly shocked when I objected and told her,
“No absolutely not. It doesn’t excuse you from doing wrong.” She told me her “friend” was forced to do sexually repulsive acts and participate in viewing pornographic material with her husband because he told her too and it was her duty to obey. She didn’t really feel that it was right to do those things but that the wife couldn’t be guilty of doing something wrong if she was just submitting to her husband.

I heard many a time as a young man before I got married the instructions from my dad repeated by my mom to pick a young one so you can train them right. It was disgusting and laughed off, “Oh that’s Kerry making a joke.” My parents met when my dad was a high school senior and my mom was 14. The story I was always told was that my mother ran away from home to be with my dad and they got married when she was 17.

My dad did not involve my mother in financial matters and my mom was always—always terrified of their financial state. In the last few years it became clear to me that my dad kept her from knowing financial affairs because he had to be in control. Despite my best efforts, that behavior followed me into my marriage and was a major contributor to the deterioration of my marriage. I know that I thought I was protecting my wife…she can’t panic about what she doesn’t know; after all that was what my dad did.

In the past few weeks before mother disappeared she was panicking about the steers, and their finances. She told her grandchildren that the grain to feed those steers had cost so much money that the kids probably wouldn’t make a dime after they paid their grandpa back. Of course this was nonsense; more of my dad keeping her in the dark. It wasn’t a joke…my dad refused to tell my mom what was in the bank. As he would put it, “She can’t handle that.”

There was good.

I can’t remember a time where my parents didn’t start their day taking a bath together and doing their daily devotional together in the bath tub. The arguments and disagreements weren’t ugly because my mother complied. My wife did not. In retrospect, she shouldn’t have. I don’t regret that my wife wasn’t submissive, but that I had been taught she was expected to be. My mother may have been trained, she may have been brow beaten and conditioned into compliance, but my mother was absolutely devoted to my dad. That doesn’t mean it wasn’t abuse.

I have always known in my heart that the way my dad dominated my mother was wrong. But I allowed myself to believe it was just the way their relationship was. She chose to be with him. She believed she was doing the right thing. Of the many wrongs my mother experienced—not recognizing the signs of abuse and not helping her is one of my biggest regrets.

Even now, looking back…conversations, parenting decisions, jokes such as, “we don’t believe in divorce, murder yes—divorce no,” they all take a new light. I am reconsidering my childhood all over. Still, none of this makes my dad guilty of murder. None of it answers where is my mom, did dad do something too her? It is truth and it pulls back an ugly curtain and shines the light on every dark blotch of my parent’s lives. I don’t want my mother to be thought of as an abused, depressed wife driven to suicide.

Doesn’t every child want to see their parents as perfect? What do you do when one disappears and the other one is the only suspect?

I have said this before and it’s the plain truth, when the police asked me what I would think if my dad hurt my mom, “anyone is capable of anything.” I don’t have evidence. If they do then use it to file charges. Where is my mom? I haven’t a clue today anymore than I did 2 years, 14 days and 18 hours ago. My attitude hasn’t changed. My dad has destroyed his own reputation and I am sick to my stomach, but get it right folks; he did this too himself. He has had every opportunity to come clean, to let the truth be told, and he has always chose to keep the public in the dark…hide the real you…don’t air that dirty laundry.

He has managed his public image and your impression of him for 30 years. He isn’t going to change today. Maybe that’s the real mistake my brother and I have made, thinking that finding our mother is more important than what you think about my dad. If you can’t tell, Find Lynn Messer has nothing to do with finding her, just managing your impression of the grieving husband. Ignore the replacement for her that he’s had for the past 100 weeks, of 106, since she disappeared.”

Love her soul

Difficult, Disappointing, or Destructive Marriage?

Listen to Leslie Vernick’s 4 1/2 minute video to find out the difference between a difficult, disappointing, and destructive marriage.

Talking about destructive marriages, I want to submit to my readers that the patriarchal movement qualifies as destructive. I have heard of, and read of, leader after leader in the patriarchal movement falling to significant sexual sin. Of course, this is not universally true, but it seems to be a breeding ground for men with ulterior motives for engaging in this movement. I have received numerous communications from women who are, or were, caught up in the movement. In these cases; men were given authority over all areas of the wife’s life and it led to situations of unrighteous domination and huge sexual addictions, sin and abuse by the husband.

Hopefully you’re in a terrific marriage! If so, you can watch the video to better understand what a friend or relative may be suffering through in their marriage.

A past contributor to my blog, Joy S, who wrote on the subject of, “Narcissistic Parents: Parts 1,2,3 & 4” reminded me of the following quote for this specific topic:

“The Woman was made of a rib out of the side of Adam; not made out of his head to rule over him, nor out of his feet to be trampled upon by him, but out of his side to be equal with him, under his arm to be protected, and near his heart to be beloved.” Matthew Henry


20 More Narcissistic Red Flags

But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days.  People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive,disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy,  without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good,  treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God—having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with such people. 2 Timothy 3:1-5

Because I know there are those of you who woke up today asking, “Is it me? Am I crazy? This all has to be my fault! I can’t do anything right. My defects are continually pointed out; character traits that I thought were good, positive and helpful, are identified as terrible and wrong. I feel like I should just go sit on the shelf and be quiet until I am asked for and needed. I thought I was strong, intelligent, capable, a good friend, generous, happy and hospitable. Now I feel empty—sad…erased. Where did I go?”

Perhaps it isn’t you! No loving, empathetic human would treat another like this. Maybe it’s time to look at your difficult person through a new set of lenses.

 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,  gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Galatians 5:22-23

So here, I’m handing you a new set of eyes. While I’m at it, I’ll lend you a new pair of ears so you can recall if these are phrases you often hear. Do the below statements reflect how you have felt, how your heart has ached, questions you have asked, or statements that have been made to you?

If so, you may want to study narcissistic personality disorder. If the below problems identify a relationship you are in, you will need professional help; along with, prayer and bible study to make it through to healthy thinking, wise boundaries and an emotionally safe relationship.

You can do it!


NPD 12NPD 32NPD 33NPD 34NPD 35NPD 38NPD 75NPD 44NPD 45NPD 47NPD 48NPD 49NPD 51

NPD 73








Leslie Vernick,Photo credit: Twitter profile picture

The Emotionally Destructive Marriage

If  you wonder if you are in a destructive marriage, or if you know a friend or family member who is in a destructive marriage and you want to support them, this post will help you.

Last week a dear friend reminded me about Leslie Vernick, and her Christ-centered counseling. It’s perfect timing considering the content of some of my recent articles. I often blog to validate women who are living in abusive marriages, or who have left abusive marriages; specifically those who endured someone with narcissistic personality disorder.

Leslie Vernick picks up where  most counselors leave off. It’s rare to find a counselor who fully understands the dynamics of living with an emotionally abusive husband; Leslie does.

If you don’t know who Leslie is, and you’re living in a difficult marriage, consider Leslie your life line…the key to your sanity…a gift from God. She will teach you how to thrive in difficult circumstance and how to set boundaries.

I will post a series of  short videos over the next few weeks. If this is your first time to stumble across Leslie Vernick, and you realize you need her help now, and quickly, then you can find her on Youtube and binge watch all day long. It’s good stuff! You can also locate her books the Emotionally Destructive Relationship and The Emotionally Destructive Marriage at your local library, bookstore, or on Amazon.

“They’ve diagnosed cancer of the marriage as a common cold.”

~Leslie Vernick on the state of counsel abused women receive from pastors, teachers, lay people, counselors and authors. 

Watch this 3 minute introduction video:

Follow Leslie on Twitter

On Facebook

For women who are still struggling with what is required regarding submission in your marriage,  I beg you to watch this 8 minute video, by Leslie Vernick, at Visionary Womanhood.

Do You Think You Might Be in an Emotionally Destructive “Christian” Marriage?

“This is a serious problem in the Church. There are many women married to “Christian” men who only see their wives as objects to be used, mocked, and criticized rather than valuable co-heirs of the grace of life. (It can be the other way around too, but this blog is written for women.) These women are encouraged by their church to submit, overlook, forgive, and shut up. If they try to get help, they are told they are angry (as abused people often are), whiny, and ruining their husband’s reputation. What they really are is confused, brainwashed, and gagged. Their children grow up believing that to be a “Christian” is to pretend, hide, and cover up. They end up despising Christianity and marriage, seeing these as hypocritical cesspools of evil. If you suspect you fall into this category, or you think you know someone who does, here are some places to start getting help in seeing your situation clearly:” ~Natalie at Visionary Womanhood READ MORE HERE



You Can Do It!

It is written: “Fear not, stand still (firm, confident, undismayed), and see the salvation (victory) of the Lord, which he will work for you today. For the Egyptians (this problem, fight, difficulty) whom you see today, you shall never see again. The Lord will fight for you, and you have only to be silent.” Ex. 14:13-14.

Some days we’re just too tired to fight any more; or maybe we don’t have the slightest idea how to get out of our mess. Good news…remind God of His word then stand and watch Him fight for you.

Do you want to step back in your own strength or step forward into God’s and stand?

I have found that my toughest day with God is better than my best day on my own.

To quote Ralph Waldo Emerson , “What lies behind us and what lies before us are small matters compared to what lies within us.”

What lies within us? The Holy Spirit. The power that raised Christ from the dead! “ Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these…” John 14:12

That’s some power!

He left us His power and He is loving. He is gentle. He is tender. He is also persistent and wants good for us.

It is written: “I will be your safe place in difficult times.” Nahum 1:7

Go ahead…pray these verses to Him. After all, “He is God and He’s passionate about just one thing, His relationship with you.” Exodus 34:14 paraphrased




Scripture Typer pic


Scripture Typer


I’m giddy with excitement to share this find with you.

For those of you who know me or have read some of my past blog posts you know I enjoy keeping my favorite scripture verses with me at all times. I never know when I might need encouragement, or might need to pray for a situation or person. I’ve prayed through the verses multiple times over life and death emergencies.

There is nothing more powerful than praying God’s word back to him; plus scripture is the Holy Spirit’s language…so I like to speak it.

“For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.” Hebrews 4:12

God’s phone number: “Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you.” Jeremiah 29:12

Over the last seventeen years I have filled multiple spiral index card notebooks with verses that were applicable to me during different seasons of life.

But now…

Now there is a handy, dandy app for this. And not only for this, but for many other functions. Let me tell you about this app and its superb functions. (I’m on the edge of my seat, smiling ear to ear, feeling like a little girl who was given a new favorite gift—and I’m bringing my gift for Show and Tell to demonstrate the awe and wonder of it!)

Its name: Scripture Typerscripturetyper

Cost: 50 verses for FREE, $9.99 for full version. (I used the 50 verses in 30 minutes and paid for the full version App. Priceless earthly and eternal investment!

Usable devices: Android, Kindle, Computers/laptops, iPad, iPhone

Memorize & Review Verses Anytime, Anywhere

Import Any Verse in the Bible from 10 Translations
Choose Verses from over 55 Categories
Review System Keeps You Current
Bible Memory iPhone App   Record Verses & Play Them Back
Bible Memory iPhone App   Draw Illustrations
Bible Memory iPhone App   Review with Flash Cards

So far I have these categories

  1. 2016 (Favorite verses from Bible studies and my quiet times.)
  2. Siesta 2015 (The verses I memorized with Beth Moore’s Siesta Scripture Memory Team in 2015.)
  3. It is written… (To remind me to powerfully pray God’s Word which He inspired and left for us to use as our spiritual weapon.)
  4. 2016 (Favorite verses I’ve studied in Bible study and my quiet times.)
  5. Riley (Scriptures to pray over my daughter.)
  6. AJ and Colson (Scriptures to pray over my sons.)
  7. Farm Boy  (Scriptures to pray over my husband.)

I use four of my collections for praying and memorization, and the other three for praying for my family members. New verses can be added, edited or deleted at any time.

I use ScriptureTyper when I’m driving around town in my mini-van. I simply tap the first verse in a collection, then tap ‘Play.’ You can play the entire collection or play one verse over until you have heard enough of it, or memorized it. Do this under the, ‘Play Entire Collection’ tab. There is a tab that allows you to play each entry one time or multiple times, ‘Play Each Entry’ tab. You can shuffle the entries or listen to them in the order of the books of the Bible.

One of the most difficult aspects of memorizing scripture for me is remembering the address/reference of the book, chapter and verse. So…when I have recorded the verse I also say the address. When this is finished, ScriptureTyper, gives you the option to record the reference. I record it again—then I hear the address/reference at the beginning and the end of the verse. This makes me HAPPY!

You can also scroll to the bottom of, ‘My Verses’ and click, ‘Browse Verse Library’ to find a collection you are interested in memorizing or praying. Check mark the category and click the arrow on the right. This will now show up in, ‘My Verses.’ You can click on this new category and tap, ‘Edit’ to give this category a new name. This will save you time scripturetyper versesimporting verses.

Did I mention I adore this app?

I do!

You will too!

But that’s not all…

Review your verses to keep them memorized!

As you successfully review your verses, the review interval will be slowly increased.

You can also manually adjust the review frequency of any verse. This is helpful when you add new verses that you already know well. Just click on the frequency in the list above to change it.

Browse ScriptureTyper’s verse library and you will find a tab to help you memorize the books of the Bible; along with, tabs for verses to help you remember verses on Salvation and Sharing the Gospel. They’ve thought of everything!

One more…You can tap the three little bars to the left of a verse to go to the, ‘Verse Actions’ screen. From here you can share your verse with anyone and everyone through at least 16 different communication and social apps. This is the gift that keeps on giving!


I’m giving away the ScriptureTyper app to one lucky/blessed/as excited about this as I am, reader. Simply tell my your favorite garden flower in the, ‘Leave a Comment’ link at the top of this blog post and you will be automatically entered to win this app. The winner will be chosen and announced next Tuesday night; May 31, 2016.