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Lynn Messer: More correspondence

I have met some amazingly wonderful people through the avenue of blogging. They challenge me, encourage me, speak truth to me, and provide excellent community. I’m grateful to have made a few new, meaningful friendships with like-minded people.

I received the following letter from a reader who is a former homeschool graduate with a college degree from Moody Bible Institute. The below letter was sent directly to the church.

This is another biblical challenge for the church leadership to change the path they are taking.

Dear Pastors of First Baptist Festus,

 

I am not sure if you are familiar with the passage in Zechariah 7.  In my 30+ years in the church, I have never been fortunate enough to hear a sermon on this passage.   It really speaks to the WHY of what we do.

The people[a] sent Sherezer. . .  to the house of God, to pray before the Lord, and to ask…, “Should I weep in the fifth month and fast as I have done for so many years?”

Then the word of the Lord of hosts came to me, saying, “. . . ‘When you fasted and mourned in the fifth and seventh months during those seventy years, did you really fast for Me—for Me? When you eat and when you drink, do you not eat and drink for yourselves?  Should you not have obeyed the words which the Lord proclaimed through the former prophets…?’”

Zachariah 7:2 – 7

Could fasting or other spiritual practices really be insulting to God?

I am struck with God’s response to the question as to if they should continue their observance of fasting.  God wanted to know if the mourning and fasting was for Him?  For His glory?  God didn’t need to ask a rhetorical question – He is all knowing, but I presume He wanted to evoke thoughts that would result in repentance, change and restoration.  Simply put – He was confronting them.  Sadly, they didn’t listen!

In verse 9, the Lord Almighty said this “Administer true JUSTICE, show mercy and compassion to one another.” Simply, love mercy and DO Justice.  Justice is compassionate and precedes mercy.  No surprise that a just God is justice-oriented.

Verse 10 speaks to not oppressing widows, the fatherless, foreigners or poor.   And to NOT plot evil against one another.

Sadly, they weren’t inspired by the words of God.  They didn’t get to the business of justice.   It seems shocking that they were too busy to listen to God because, after all, they were building the temple

“They refused to heed, shrugged their shoulders and stopped their ears…They made their hearts as hard as flint.” (verse 11 – 12)  God was angry!  Injustice makes God angry! 

The chapter ends with “When I called they didn’t listen . . . I scattered them . . . This is how they made the pleasant land desolate.”

When I heard that a memorial service was being held for Lynn Messer, my first Lynnthought was, “Why?”  Why another one in addition to the one held by Lynn’s sons, sisters and mom? If Kerry was holding another one, why didn’t this happen at the same as when her bones were buried?  Why now?  Why isn’t there justice for Lynn? Why would First Baptist Festus continue to align themselves with a man who appears to have a heart of flint and is unrepentant?

Why is First Baptist Festus focused on mercy for one man but not on justice for Lynn?  Throughout the Bible and in God’s economy, justice comes first and then mercy.  Is it really merciful to not do justice?  NO!

My heart is especially grieved by earthly fathers and, in particular, Christian earthly fathers who do not emulate the love of our Heavenly Father to their children.  Fathers who give their children stones and snakes when the children ask for bread and fish have done something more devastating than breaking the hearts of their children – these evil fathers trample on the very earthly institution that God instituted to remind us of His love.   I am pretty sure this angers a just God.  (Matthew 7:9-11)  I am saddened by the manner in which Kerry has treated his sons.

Could having a memorial for service for a dear lady be the wrong thing to do?  I submit to you that YES it is just as it was wrong for the fasting to take place in the above passage.  Justice first, then mercy not fasting or memorial services that are self-serving.  The best way to honor Lynn is to act justly, to love her sons and to honor the sanctity of marriage!

What should happen next weekend is that Kerry Messer should be urged to cooperate with law enforcement and repent –  if for nothing else than for having an affair.  It is hard to believe that a husband with a missing wife would start a relationship just weeks after the wife went missing unless he knew she wasn’t coming home.  And makes you wonder if then the new relationship wasn’t the reason for Lynn’s death?

Please don’t continue to bring dishonor to my Lord and Savior by your unwillingness to stand for justice.  Lynn had evil plotted against her, so don’t be too busy “building your temple” to take a stand for justice.  Don’t allow your hearts to be that of flint.  I am sad to think that a failure to seek justice will result in making the “pleasant land” of First Baptist desolate.

 

Justice before Mercy,

J Lee

Dear 2

Click link ‘LYNN MESSER’ in margin for more articles.

#JusticeForLynn fundraiser: YouCaring

 *Disclaimer: This is a letter written in its entirety by a GiveMe Chocolate reader. These are their opinions and do not necessarily reflect the ideas or opinions of this website.  I am committed to publishing works of integrity. In that spirit, I offer this letter to my readers; however, the words are the author’s alone—told from their viewpoint. The testimony presented in this letter does not constitute legal facts, a guarantee, or a prediction regarding the outcome of advice given.

 

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Aarron Messer: Spring Thomas estate a coincidence?

This is Aarron Messer’s response to my blog post yesterday; Spring Thomas estate case 05/09/2014

From Aarron Messer:

“I wanted to comment on the post regarding Spring’s Father’s Estate. Spring is an only child who cared for her mother and father as they passed. There were no competing claims on her estate. It’s closure has little bearing or relevance aside from the coincidence of events, it’s closure followed by mom’s disappearance. Few of us still accept coincidence as an answer.
After my Grandmother Ruby, Kerry’s mom passed away his father Darryl remarried. He moved off the farm to his new wife’s home in Perryville. Several events happened that led too my Uncle Danny being evicted from the farm after he presumptuously moved into Grandpa’s house. The eviction was forced by Kerry, and this led to Danny being cut out of the will. Kerry was to be the only inheritor of the farm.
Later Abram was asked to move into that same house by our grandfather and the house was given too him verbally by our Grandfather. Lynn and Kerry referred to the house as Abram’s house. Abram never was asked to pay any rent, in fact Abram paid the real estate taxes on his house and more than half the acreage of the farm for the more than a dozen years he lived there. He also paid Kerry for a portion of the farm insurance policy that covered the house. Further Abram paid the utilities on the house which included the well which watered the cattle on half the farm the entire time he lived there. 
As our new step-grandmother aged she broke her hip. She was sent to rehab in a care facility, and grandpa went to visit her everyday. As she recovered and was due to be released from the care facility, her son announced that he held power of attorney over her and decided that she needed to stay in a nursing home. It was discovered that Arbell, Darryl’s new wife did not own the farm that they lived on in Perryville but that her son had failed to list her on the deed as he had power of attorney over her since before their wedding. This produced chaos as Grandpa was told he had to leave the home he had shared with his new bride, her son was going to evict him.
Eventually, Kerry and Lynn had Darryl move into an apartment they had prepared on the farm. Darryl would drive the 40 miles a day everyday to see his wife in a nursing home. As he began to suffer from Parkinson’s Kerry obtained power of attorney over Darryl. The nursing home threatened to sue Grandpa for his assets to pay for Arbell’s care. This threat led to what I can only describe as the most disturbing moral lapse that I had ever seen in my father up to that point. Note this was all before my wife divorced me while I am serving as a pastor and was to result in me choosing to distance myself from MFN and caused an enormous rift between myself and my family as a whole.
Kerry as power of attorney for my grandfather filed divorce proceedings between Darryl and Arbell. His defense, one that Lynn repeated because she was told it had to be this way, was that if they did not do so Abram would be forced out of his home and half the farm would be lost. Kerry had already had half the farm transferred into his own name but the portion that was Abram’s was still in Grandpa’s name. My father told me that to protect my brother he had to force the divorce between my grandfather and his bride.
In what is the most disturbing element after the divorce was finalized Arbell’s son moved her too another nursing home in secret and hid her from my grandfather so he was never able to see his wife again; something that would never have happened if Kerry hadn’t made a financial decision to “protect” Abram’s house. Not that this mattered when he suddenly demanded rent from Abram or else eviction after having lived in his own house for a dozen years. My father suggests that Abram has anger issues, if anyone should be outraged by being treated this way Abram should.
Abram had every legal right to fight Kerry in court over ownership of his home. But Kerry has clearly demonstrated that he will use legal means for personal financial gain without regard for his own family, marriage, children, his own brother or father. So can we see some kind of major story in the apparent coincidence of Spring closing her fathers estate and the immediate disappearance of Lynn? No, but do you actually believe in coincidence? I don’t.”

Original article: Spring Thomas estate case 05/09/2014

Read more: Who is Spring Thomas by Aarron Messer

Click link ‘LYNN MESSER’ in margin for more articles.

#JusticeForLynn fundraiser: YouCaringnew Lynn Messer

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Lynn Messer: Media Release Statement, Letter to the Sheriff, Kerry changes FLM page

Above photo: Some of Lynn’s favorite flowers were dark red roses

For those of you who have followed the Lynn Messer case I am posting her son Abram Messer’s statement which he released to the media today. (If you are new to this case you may click  “Lynn Messer” in the margin or header; depending on the media platform you use.)

Abram Messer 1

Photo Credit: J.B. Forbes, St. Louis Post Dispatch

PRESS RELEASE: DISCLAIMER: This press release is Abrams opinion. I will preface it with he thinks this, but it has not been proven and no arrest has been made.  Please recognize that their memories of the events described in this press release may differ. 

So as many of you are aware, I’ve been getting calls from media outlets in light of the information we received yesterday. Here is the statement which I have released:

“Our family is both saddened and heartbroken over the actions that my father has chosen.

No one should be surprised at the devastation which comes from choosing sin. But God is faithful and just to cleanse, forgive and restore us through the blood of the Lamb. He is also a God of justice, and we will stay the course in seeking that justice. So we are renewing our call in begging my father to come clean, and tell the truth so he can experience the peace which only comes through Gods forgiveness.”

There are many Christians who have deliberately decided to twist the Word of God only talking about forgiveness, choosing to ignore Gods commands for His people to be a people who pursue justice…. my friends this has nothing to do with vengeance. We are commanded by God Himself to stand for truth. We are commanded by God Himself to call out sin publicly (after we follow the Biblical steps confronting that sin privately; which yes we have done), no matter how much it hurts. 

Why? Because whatever pain and heartbreak we experience through out that process-—it is nothing compared to the spiritual pain and heartache which comes from complacency.

Please continue to lift our family up before the Throne of Grace. He is faithful… and I must decrease so that He will increase. Whatever you may be going through in your life remember that God is faithful and just to cleanse and forgive. But to receive His forgiveness and restoration we must all acknowledge our sin before Him. His long suffering love which He extends to us has limits which only He can define—for rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft. Repent, turn to Christ—only then will you experience His peace and rest. For when we plant our feet upon The Rock… there is no storm which can shake you.

LETTER TO THE SHERIFF’S DEPARTMENT AND ATTORNEY GENERAL’S OFFICE (From one of the GiveMe Chocolate readers who commented on the article “Lynn Messer Secretly Transported Across State Lines and Buried”

Last night, I sent this to the St. Genevieve County Sheriff, Major Schott and copied the Attorney General’s office.

“I am highly concerned about the lack of activity surrounding the disappearance – and now we know – death of Lynn Messer. Based on the publicly available information, it would seem that Kerry Messer was most certainly involved somehow in her death. I can only assume that law enforcement has even more information pointing in his direction. Nearly three years after her disappearance and nearly a year after the discovery of her body, we still have no action being taken toward Mr. Messer. It would seem that the Sheriff’s department did not adequately search the property in those early days or that the body was subsequently brought to the property after it was searched. Either way, action is called for here.

Today, I’ve learned that the St. Genevieve County coroner released the body to Mr. Messer only to have him take it over state lines into Arkansas without the knowledge of Lynn’s sons, sisters or mother. It would seem that the Sheriff’s department as the lead investigative agency would have certainly known that the body was going to be released and understanding the circumstances, they could have let Lynn’s family members know what was about to take place. These family members could have sought injunctive relief to block the release of the body to Kerry given the high level of suspicion surrounding him and his lack of honesty with Lynn’s family members as well as his reported lack of cooperation – and his girlfriend’s lack of cooperation – with the investigation. Unfortunately, St. Genevieve County didn’t afford Lynn’s family this option. That adds another layer of tragedy upon an already tragic situation.

I called Carl Kinskey’s office several months ago about the progress on the investigation and he said he was just waiting on the Sheriff’s department. Why hasn’t information been sent over to the prosecuting attorney’s office? Where’s the grand jury? Is this an open investigation at this time? I certainly hope that the Sheriff’s office isn’t withholding information from the prosecuting attorney’s office waiting for some kind of air tight case to develop in this very bizarre circumstance. I urge you to send the information you have on the investigation to the prosecuting attorney. “

 

Find Lynn Messer page update…

Did anyone else notice? Kerry changed the “Find Lynn Messer” Facebook page cover photo. It now says the page is “authority-sanctioned.” The sheriff’s office confirmed to me a year ago that Kerry and Spring have not been cooperating with the investigation since their relationship was revealed to investigators. Which authorities is Kerry referring to?

The same cover photo says Lynn is missing as of 7/8/14. Why did Kerry not include that she was found?

authority sanctioned

And here is what Kerry Messer has to say about the ongoing investigation:

 

Click here to link to the full length news segment/video:… 

 

Click here to support #JusticeForLynn Messer Fundraiser for legal and investigative fees

Below is yesterday’s post:

Lynn Messer secretly transported across state lines and buried

Kerry Messer secretly transported Lynn’s remains across state lines for burial.

Aarron, Abram, and Elizabeth contacted family members this morning so they heard it from them first instead of from media.

Rumors have been circulating for the last 2-3 weeks that Lynn’s remains were going to be released to Kerry Messer in the near future. Kerry has posted on his Find Lynn Messer Facebook page that he intended to obtain Lynn’s remains soon.

My sources told me that Kerry informed his church First Baptist Church Festus/Crystal City that he in fact obtained her remains and buried them yesterday.  Lynn’s remains rest next to Grandma Messer. According to the funeral home a pastor was present at the grave side service; along with, Kerry, an unnamed woman, and two of Kerry’s relatives who were named.

Lynn’s sons had remained hopeful that as long as the investigation was ongoing their mom’s remains would not be released. They have reached out to investigators but do not yet have answers.

Aarron spoke with his dad, Kerry Messer, on two separate occasions this morning and this is what Aarron says transpired:

Aarron: “I heard that you buried mother yesterday?”

Kerry: “Why do you care?”

Aarron: “She’s my mother.”

Kerry: “And I’m supposed to be your dad.”

Aarron: “You…are…”

According to Aarron, Kerry hung up on him mid-sentence.

Kerry also stated that Lynn was buried by “the only family she has left, that actually love her.”

“This is who supporters of MFN are endorsing.  A man who takes the body of his children’s mother from the coroner in secret and buries her without a word to her own children, her mother, or her sisters; all out of spite because he is the primary suspect in her disappearance and death.”

Lynn’s remains were released from the St. Louis coroner’s office last week and Kerry had her remains transported to Arkansas. They were cleared yesterday and buried the same day. The sheriff’s office did not have a say in how this transpired; it was up to the coroner. The husband, even if he were sitting in jail, has control of the remains.

Was this a controlling, abusive act Kerry committed against his sons and their families?

This is no quick commute for Aarron’s  and Abram’s families, or for Lynn’s side of the family to visit Lynn’s gravesite.  What else can a father do to traumatize his children?

Lynn’s remains rest in Walcott, Arkansas, in Mount Zion Cemetery under the direction of Heath Funeral Home in Paragould, Arkansas.

Like Aarron, I too thought of organizations who continue to retain Kerry as their state lobbyist. Families for Home Education, is this the type of parents you are? Do you treat your own children in this way, or do you consider this highly dysfunctional? Why do you want someone like this representing you?

Make no mistake; Lynn’s remains being released to Kerry Messer in no way indicates he is no longer a part of the investigation into Lynn’s disappearance and death. The case is open and active with new information still being received by the Ste. Genevieve County Sheriff’s Office.

 *Correction: Lynn ‘ s remains were released from the Ste. Genevieve County coroner.

 

Click link ‘LYNN MESSER’ in margin or header for more articles.

 

*Opinions expressed are not from me. There has not been an arrest made in this case and no one is presumed guilty until proven in a court of law.

 

 

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Aarron Messer: FHE, Kerry Messer

These are Aarron Messer’s own words from his public Facebook page. He is once again allowing me to post his thoughts to my readers.
Side note: I posted the Petition to FHE: Remove Kerry Messer on FHE’s public FB page and it was quickly removed.
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FHE
Today, a letter requesting that FHE distance themselves from my father began to circulate. I, too, am surprised that FHE has continued their relationship with my father as a representative of the organization. I understand it’s hard to take that step and separate yourself from someone who has been a champion and celebrated voice of your community. Being homeschooled was one of the greatest advantages of my life. It has been something I have been proud of. The work my dad has accomplished for FHE and many wonderful institutions supporting families throughout Missouri has been immeasurable. I, too, do not want to see Kerry’s ministry and work tarnished in this way. I want to pull back the curtain today. The point is not trash homeschooling, my parents or FHE, but just to remind us all that we are people.
Every movement every cause has supporters. Each church is filled with people as in our families and homes. Those people are sinners. They make mistakes and their lives are scarred by the consequences of their actions. Just to illustrate that I am going to share some details with you. Many of you will know the people I am talking about. They are my family and yours. I won’t give names, but I want you to know that your champions are flawed. Every one of them. I am no different and neither are you. You, too, can fall. Sin can wreak havoc in your life just as it has in many of our friends and loved ones in this community and in mine.
Homeschooling is wonderful, and it is rooted in a basic return to fundamental truth. Children are the responsibility of parents. Teaching and preparing your children for the world is your duty as a parent. Let me tell you about my family. If you were homeschooled, you may have had similar experiences or heard stories much like those I am about to share. My parents were from a rural community in Ste Genevieve County, but that isn’t the whole picture.
See my Grandparents on my dad’s side left Arkansas when they were 17, got married and moved to Illinois. Seven months later, my Uncle Danny was born, and no one talked about it. My grandfather was illiterate. He had lived in poverty working is his entire childhood as a sharecropper. His family owned nothing. They worked to keep a roof over their heads and food in their stomachs. He taught himself to read as best he could from the Bible.
He did what he could as a 17 year old father and husband – he went to work. He worked in meat-packing in East St. Louis. He worked hard to support his 3 boys and a daughter who wouldn’t live past her 1st birthday. He worked hard and long hours on the kill floor. He saw the money being made from farmers bringing their beef to be processed. He dreamed of having something of his own. He bought the family farm my dad owns now and tried to become a farmer over and over again. He would borrow money, buy a herd and inevitably sell off the herd to pay off the loan. He didn’t make it, but when he moved from Illinois to Ste Gen County and to the farm multiple things happened.
The family had no phone. The boys in middle school were held back a year. Danny, Kerry and Gary lived on DD. As many of you who have lived in this county know, they were labeled as trouble makers from K Road. My dad was a loner – he was from a a Baptist family in a Catholic county. They were snubbed in Ste Gen and they made Festus home for all their shopping needs. The school policy prohibited the kids from taking school books home after school. The bus ride an hour away to Ste Gen was more than enough distance to separate a family from the school. With no phone, the school had little contact with my grandparents who were unaware their kids were held back a year. My dad was a classic middle kid. His older brother and younger brother ganged up on him. They skipped school together and when my dad threatened to tell, they broke his arm.
My grandfather was a quiet man who didn’t really know how to communicate with his kids. There wasn’t much family bonding shall we say. I know every one of his kids was cut at one point or another by his chainsaw gathering firewood. He wasn’t abusive, but he was just kind of unobservant. Danny, the oldest, graduated and joined the military. Gary was popular as the youngest, but he went off to Florida and unfortunately was killed by a drunk driver. From the rumors my dad shared when I was kid, he was probably in Florida running drugs.
The stories I was told of my dad’s school experience went something like this: he didn’t want to do homework. If he didn’t do homework, he got a whipping at school, but he just took his whipping everyday. He could take that and then he didn’t have to do his homework.
Don’t get me wrong; dad is smart. He remembers and shared how college and career day in Ste Gen high school consisted of every kid from in town being taken to college tours. The county kids were given job applications for the factories and mines. He told us of teachers who were drunk in every class, who gave grades on the basis of how short your dress was and if you sat in the front row uncrossing your legs often enough for him to have a peek.
My dad fondly kept a creative writing paper on how to make the perfect peanut butter sandwich which he turned in 3 or 4 times to the same teacher cutting the grade off each time. The teacher was too high to notice it was the same paper. He fondly recalls fostering a relationship for a whole year with the psychology teacher just to tell him off on the last day of class. That’s right – my dad spent the entire semester becoming the teacher’s pet just to be able to call the teacher an asshole in class on the last day of school.Respect for teachers and the education system was not exactly fostered in their home.
Just over the fence from the farm was an old one room school house long abandoned. It had fallen in before I came along, but I remember it and my dad shared how he learned more sneaking into that building and reading the old books left behind in it than from his teachers. Now, my dad is no dummy. In Jefferson City, many people assume my dad is an attorney because of his familiarity with the law. He isn’t. He never went to college – not one day. In fact. he told me not to bother going – it’s a waste. Unless you have to have a degree for your job, you’re just wasting money to go to school.
My mother grew up with 2 sisters. She was a middle child and rebellious against her catholic family. When she fell for dad at 14, she turned her back on her family and it got ugly. My dad was older. He graduated and went to work in St. Louis at a grain elevator. At 17, my mom ran away from home and lived with my dad’s parents. In December, they got married. It was her senior year and the school looked at her academic record. She had all her credits needed to graduate, but getting married. . .ah…you didn’t need to do that, so they refused to give her a diploma. Few people realize that high schools can actually withhold your diploma and refuse to allow you to graduate for any reason they want.
Fifteen months later in St. Louis, I was born. Thirteen months later, Abram came along as well. Young parents popping out kiddos, their hands full, a mortgage, a job, volunteering with their church as bus captains and youth leaders – active as can be. Enthralled with the theological fallacies of the day, they fell headlong into the “Tim Lahaye-the-end-is-near” malarkey. They thought, “We don’t have time to raise a family. We need to be busy serving God.” So, my dad had a vasectomy. A few years later when they tried to get it reversed and the reversal failed, my parents wept over never being able to have more children having believed that it could be reversed anytime. Not having the money for the private Christian school at their church and living in the City of St. Louis, my mother and father were disgusted with public schools, so as my mother would say, “If I can teach them to tie their shoes and teach them the alphabet, I can teach them to read and write.” So we were homeschooled.
Now, homeschooling was technically against the law in Missouri at the time. My parents – true rebels and in probably their most radical years – made a plan. If anyone tried to stop them from homeschooling, my mother would take us and drive to Arkansas to family who would hide us from the authorities. My dad would stand boldly and dare the State to arrest him for teaching his own children. He went and stood on the steps of the capital in Jefferson City and publicly declared, “I am homeschooling my children in violation of the law, arrest me or change that law.” This is how Kerry Messer started to fight for homeschooling in Missouri. Just as the theologians and the Christian Coalition kicked off in the 80’s, MFN my dad’s ministry began and he has served in the political field for years since. Yes, we stood by families threatened by DFS for homeschooling. We saw the laws change and Missouri has the best homeschooling laws in the entire country.
But, that doesn’t make us good people – we are just people who have done some good. My dad is hard headed and self-determined. Of course, that apple hasn’t fallen far. You know when I learned of his secret affair with his new Girlfriend back in April and May of 2015, I confronted him. My single biggest objection and concern that I shared with him over and over was how all the good things, all the positive work, all the people who have been blessed and honored by his service and his ministry now have to face the question, “Who is Kerry?” How can his work mean anything when he is a liar and a cheater and maybe he did something awful to his wife?
To quote a Senator from Missouri when asked about Kerry this legislative session, “He wasn’t welcome in my office before he killed his wife.” My father has tarnished and ruined the reputation of his ministry and our family. I sat and I implored him and I was baffled at his replies.
My father decided within weeks of my mother’s “disappearance” death that having a girlfriend was more important than the entire ministry of MFN. It was more important than all the organizations he ever represented, than every cause every belief he ever represented. That made no sense to me.
How is it possible for a man to decide, “My wife is missing, but I would rather have a girlfriend today than honor my wife’s memory, her passions and beliefs, my own family or their beliefs and ideologies. I would rather give up every cause and every good thing I have ever stood for so I can have my girlfriend.” But he did it.
We are all sinners. We all screw up. Did Kerry do wonderful things for FHE? Absolutely. But does his life represent the values he once stood for? No. He no longer represents Missouri Baptists, his own church and many of his supporters have quietly walked away. And I warned him and I told him this was the result, and he chose this path knowing it would happen.
But let me tell you, in the community of homeschoolers, the families I have known – we are close. We grew up together. You don’t think that parents will let you down. My whole life, I was that weird kid whose parents weren’t divorced. I was the kid whose mom didn’t work and who cooked every meal at home and who sacrificed everything to raise us because it was her duty – her sacred privilege to teach us and to raise us to be godly, young men. And she did it.
I look around and I see those same parents, sacred elders, revered friends, folks I considered to be family – I see divorced homes. I see families suffering from mothers who left for careers they had abandoned or for men that had written them from prison and seduced them into leaving their husbands. I see a young man my age – a genius who earned full ride scholarships to be nuclear engineer – who had to raise his own brothers and sisters when his dad took his own life. I see that man espousing atheism and rejecting everything he was raised in. I see people who I revered and who I now know molested their own children. I see friends who lost their family farm because their dad died from a heart attack after his wife left him. I see my friends struggled to pay the bills left behind from their mother and father’s divorce. I see family after family who were homeschooled whose children are struggling realizing that their parents weren’t the saints they thought they were. I saw friends who were raised in loving homes, but who married selfish men who cheated on them and they live alone afraid to remarry or even date because of how they have been wronged.
Sin. I remember that spirit of rebellion and defiance so ingrained and so natural spouting through me. In the second grade Sunday School class, my teacher asked me, “What’s your favorite Bible story?” Showing off, I said, “That one where the lady drives the tent peg through that guy’s head.” In horror, the teacher said, “Oh, I don’t think that’s in the Bible.” My rebellious, little mouth shot off, “I know more about the Bible than you.” Then, the next week, I brought my Bible and pointed out the passage and proved how much smarter than her I was.
As a high school freshman, I left the youth department. The immaturity and lack of depth in the Bible study just drove me nuts. I started teaching the young adult class at 15. I went on mission trips. I was so sure of myself. I was better than the rest of you – or at least I was smarter, and, if not smarter, I was at least right and you were wrong.
Then I married someone. And I had no idea what I was doing. I stumbled in the dark for a dozen years – lost and confused and afraid. Afraid to ask for help. Afraid to admit sin. Afraid to say, “I am no better than anyone else.” Afraid to admit that I wasn’t smarter than you. Afraid that you might know better than me. Afraid that I might be wrong. I worked hard-headed and cock sure and my boss fired me. Two years later, he hired me back and he called me Aarron 2.0. He worked with me and he held me accountable. He made me say that I was wrong and that I was sorry. It was like being forced to hold your hand in the fire. It hurt. I grew. I learned that I am wrong. I make mistakes. I am fallible. My wife left me and I hit bottom, oh so hard.
Now, I know the truth. We are all guilty. We have all done wrong. We all need salvation. We need humility. I hurt when I see the pain of sin in my friends in my family. I cried when I read that letter.
If you have been a part of the homeschool community, your life has been deeply affected by the work of Kerry Messer. He had championed you and your cause for 30 years, but he chose to walk away from his values and his family.
I don’t like it, but he does not represent what he has done in the past or FHE or you or me anymore. I am so sorry. We love you and we love him, but don’t let his personal failure be the end of your passion. It won’t be the end of mine.
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Toxic Tuesday: Lack of Self-Control

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They hate you because they hate Jesus in you.

“If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first.” John 15:18 (NIV)

They cannot tolerate your calmness in the storm, your resolve to listen only to your Savior in trust and obedience, and your ability to not allow their arrows to penetrate your heart, soul, mind and strength. Little does the abusive person know; Jesus is deflecting the arrows from ever reaching you as your gaze it set on Him.

Mindset of abusive people:
self control or lack thereof