To the Haters: A Preemptive Strike - Elisabeth Klein

My next book, Unraveling, is coming out super soon (shocker, I know…I’ve barely mentioned it!), and if you’re one of my haters (sorry, what I mean to say is Christians who think it’s totally okay to judge me because a) I’m divorced {even though you don’t know me really} or b) I want to help women who are in hurting marriages or going through a divorce to find hope and healing in God, or c) because I speak out against domestic abuse and how it’s super wrong especially for Christians and how I’m not a huge fan of how the Church sometimes handles all of that), you’re probably going to hate this book and judge me even more. Because it’s about divorce. It’s not about my divorce. It’s not saying it’s okay to divorce. It’s about getting through a divorce. But you’re probably still going to hate it, which I kinda love.

You see, I love God. And God loves people. I like to think he has a soft spot for women. And the Psalms tell me that he tends to the broken-hearted in intimate ways.  And best as I can tell, Jesus embodies grace.

So that means I need to love people. And I already do have a soft spot for women. Especially the broken-hearted ones. And especially the ones in hard marriages. And especially the ones nobody believes or has helped or has given really bad advice to. And especially the divorced ones.  And especially the ones who feel judged and beat up. (Probably because I was all of those and still a little bit am…)  And I have more grace these days than I ever have.

And I think I’ve just had a revelation: I think I’ve thought that what I do — advocating for women in difficult Christian marriages and for women who are divorced and fighting for better treatment from the Church — is kind of wrong or at the very least controversial. But, you know what I’m deciding?  It’s not wrong.  I’m not wrong.

So I’m going to keep on leaning closer to them — to draw out their stories, to remind them they’re not alone, to whisper to them that they’re going to be okay, to tell them to let God’s voice drown out their own haters, and to tell them again that they are loved, they are loved, they are loved. Because they so totally are. (No matter what you think or say or do. And I know what you’ll say here: it’s not that they aren’t loved, they’re just wrong and I disapprove of them… Hate to break it to you but that’s the opposite of loving someone right there.)

Listen, I’m just trying to figure out this life and God and what it all means and how to do it well just like the rest of you.  So, you can join me in loving these hurting women, or, and I say this with compassion for you, you can step aside. I will delete all harsh comments from now on, not responding to a one of them.  You are not my audience.  My audience is hurting women; and never once in all the time I’ve been writing and getting criticized for my writing (it’s too personal, too raw, too soon, too real, too whatever), the criticism has never come from the kind of woman I am trying to help.  Interesting…

So to quote Brene Brown, “If you’re not in the arena with the rest of us, fighting and getting your ass kicked on occasion {for the sake of hurting women}, I’m not interested in your feedback.” (Daring Greatly)