The Wall Around Your Heart – How Jesus Heals You When Others Hurt You – By Mary De Muth
This is a surprisingly candid book that deals with forgiveness and hurt using the template of the Lord’s prayer. Mary shares her experiences openly, even when she has been in the wrong. She describes the pain and discomfort of hurtful relationships, even when one is the victim. She doesn’t stop there, however. She goes on to show how one can live victoriously through Christ’s help.
The final part of the book is a clear eye-0pener to help one identify abusive ministry leaders and ministry situations. These are areas in which many people become vulnerable and suffer a lot. Here are a few of the pointers that Mary shares.
- They demand personal allegiance as proof of the follower’s allegiance to Christ
- They use exclusive language – they say, “We’re the only ministry really following Jesus,” or “we have all the right theology.”
- They demand servanthood of their followers but live prestigious, privileged lives
- They buffer from criticism by placing people around themselves whose only allegiance is to the leader. Abusive leaders view people who bring up issues as enemies. Those who were once friends or allies swiftly become combatants when a concern is raised. Sometimes these people who bring up honest issues are banished, told to be silent, or shamed into submission.
I recommend this book to those who are hurting.