read what people are saying

Diane Langberg, PHD

Psychologist, Author of Suffering and the Heart of God and On the Threshold of Hope

“I am grateful for Mary’s life and her voice. We in the body of Christ need her. Her voice, along with many others, is the voice of our God calling his people into the light of truth and grace; to comfort the brokenhearted and release the captives. Read this book. Let it get inside you. Let it change you.”

Antwuan Malone

Pastor and Executive Director of ELEVATE YA

“Mary invites everyone to the table with We Too—an honest, vulnerable, grounded, and biblical addition to the conversation of broken sexuality in the church and society. It’s an authentic conversation about where we’ve been, the challenges we face today, and the hope of healing waiting in our tomorrow. Hers is a brave, open, and necessary addition to the conversation of sexual wholeness in God’s church.”

Boz tchividjian

Attorney, law professor, founder and executive director of GRACE, Godly Response to Abuse in Christian Environments

“Too many of our faith communities are not safe places for children and vulnerable people, and they are not safe spaces for the wounded. As a survivor, respected advocate, and prolific writer who loves Jesus and His bride, my dear friend Mary shares why and how to begin the journey of transforming the Church into a community that protects the vulnerable and loves the wounded. This book is an invaluable resource that is so needed by today’s Church. Bravo, Mary!”

Vonda Dyer

CCO Minerva Consulting, Worship Leader, Survivor, Advocate

“This book is a balm to the soul and a resource for the church at large. It is intelligently and discerningly written and initiates a healthy conversation over real and pertinent issues surrounding abuse within the church. #metoo”

Dan B. Allender PHD

Author of The Wounded Heart and Healing the Wounded Heart, Founding President of the Seattle School of Theology & Psychology

We Too is a remarkable and compelling book. Mary DeMuth prophetically calls the church to enter the silence and denial surrounding sexual abuse that has inflicted the body of Christ like a deadly virus. Victims of abuse, their family and friends, and those who shepherd the flock of God will find immense hope and clarity in how we are to find healing for individuals and a restoration of integrity for the church. There could not be a more perfect book for this time.

Dr. Sandra Glahn

Professor, Dallas Theological Seminary and Coauthor of Sexual Intimacy in Marriage

“In We Too, author Mary DeMuth is at her best. She speaks with the credibility of a survivor and as a well-informed expert. Her book helps readers assure that both their interpersonal relationships and faith communities are places of human flourishing. The church has been needing this resource.”

Rev. Dr. Michael F. Bird

Academic Dean at Ridley College in Melbourne, Australia

“Mary DeMuth has written a courageous book about sexual abuse. She rightly calls out churches for their complicity and complete failure to deal with the scourge of sexual violence. She also provides practical advice on what can be done and points to a greater future still to come. This book is necessary reading for anyone in Christian leadership.”

jen pollock michel

Author of Surprised by Paradox

We Too is an essential guide to understanding the life-altering trauma of sexual violence. Grounded in biblical truth, sociological research, and survivor stories, this comprehensive book will help readers wisely navigate the complex relationship between grace and truth, justice and forgiveness. Although I grieve that such a book is necessary, I thank God that Mary DeMuth has written it.”

Glenn R. Kreider

Professor of Theological Studies, Dallas Theological Seminary

“The church must do better when it comes to victims of abuse. This call comes not from a critic or a cynic but a lover of the church, an active member of a community of faith. Mary DeMuth’s book does not merely point out the problems but also explains practical steps for the way forward. If it follows Mary’s advice, the church will become a place of healing for the wounded and abused.”

Leslie Vernick

Counselor, Speaker, and Bestselling Author

“For too long the Church has valued its reputation and the reputation of the accused over the safety and healing of the victim. DeMuth wisely shepherds the Church toward a true biblical narrative demonstrating God’s care and his justice for the oppressed. We Too is a must read for every pastor, ministry leader, and Christian counselor.”

Wade Mullen

Director, Master of Divinity Program, Capital Seminary & Graduate School

“I’m grateful to God that Mary DeMuth’s journey, resilience, compassion, wisdom, and leadership have been shared in these words—words clearly written with a deep love for the hurting and with an undying hope for the Church. We Too is a significant contribution to a Church and society in need of healing, change, and a safer future.”

Susan Seay

Author, Speaker, and Host for the Mentor 4 Moms Podcast

“Instead of hearing voices of comfort and support, most abuse survivors experience silence, even from the church. Women around the world deserve to be believed, and the church not only has a great opportunity, but a responsibility to respond.”

Eric Schumacher

Pastor, Author, and Songwriter

“Mary DeMuth’s We Too is a timely gift to the church. With compassion and vulnerability, she opens a door into the heart, mind, and soul of sexual abuse survivors. With expertise and clarity, she instructs us in responding to sexual abuse and loving survivors. If every church leader and member took this book to heart, the church would be a safe and healthier place.”

Brad Hambrick

Pastor of Counseling at The Summit Church

“Pastors, one of the most important and healing thing we can do for survivors is listen. Mary has given us an excellent opportunity to begin listening in a form we are familiar with—reading a book. If we read biographies of other great saints (and we should), then let us read biographies of those who have faced one the great tragedies of our day—sexual abuse—and maintained a great love for God, the gospel, and the church. Allow reading Mary’s book to be a first step toward listening well to survivors in your church who need you to be the ears of Christ.”

Rebecca Carrell

Speaker, Radio Personality, Author of Holy Hiking Boots

“Mary DeMuth speaks a powerful and prophetic word that is timely and necessary. She courageously and vulnerably shares her experiences and shows her scars in a way that will embolden many others to do the same. We Too should be required reading for every pastor, church leader, and lay minister.”

Wade Burleson

Author, Historian, Pastor

“Mary DeMuth’s gripping and transparent narrative of her own sexual abuse jolts the reader’s emotions and ignites the Christian’s mind. After reading DeMuth’s book, you’ll be convinced that we too must never again be silent in the face of abuse.”

Kim Jones

Director of Engagement, My Refuge Home

“Mary DeMuth has a message that the church needs to hear. We Too is a transparent, thoughtful, raw, and honest account of a problem in the church that no one wants to talk about. But we must. We Too deserves to be widely read by women and men, leaders and laity. Don’t miss it.”

Aaron Graham

Lead Pastor, The District Church

“In We Too, Mary DeMuth offers a prophetic and winsome call to the church to not repeat the mistakes of the past. She courageously shares her own story and writes as someone who loves the church and is committed to its redemptive mission. We must do better as a church, and Mary helps point the way forward. A must read!”

Brian Haynes

Author and Lead Pastor, Bay Area Church (League City, TX)

“Mary DeMuth’s personal story, astute theological applications, and trauma awareness bring clarity to the passivity of the church towards countless men and women bearing the scars of sexual abuse. We Too is painfully necessary and yet filled with the hope of restoration for each person, family, and church affected by sexual abuse.”

Ruth Thorogood

Evangelical Fellowship of Canada Partner

“Mary DeMuth brings wisdom to a difficult topic. She addresses the challenges faced by all the groups that can be impacted by a single act of abuse, while offering insightful yet simple recommendations to ensure things are handled appropriately.”

Bob Rognlien

Author of A Jesus-Shaped Life

“Carefully weaving the teachings of Scripture with her own story and the stories of others who have suffered sexual abuse, Mary DeMuth delivers a powerful wake-up call to the church she loves. Filled with biblical wisdom, factual evidence, and practical principles, We Too is an indispensable resource for anyone who cares about those who have been broken by sexual sin.”

Terri Fullerton

Writer

“We Too is a prophetic call to embody Christ’s healing, love, and justice for those oppressed by the powerful. It will take strength to walk humbly and courage to look at the mess. We can let go of the 30-second conversion narratives and instead sit with those bleeding in our pews. We can be the Good Samaritans again. Mary DeMuth boldly shows us the way.” 

Church leadership, it’s time to talk about sexual abuse

Thanks Cheryl Bowles Summers for sharing the video below. Scroll to halfway through the video to watch an encouraging, difficult, important sermon for those who have suffered sexual abuse. For all you pastors out there afraid to address this subject from the pulpit, it can be done with nuance and compassion. Here's an example.   I'd also like to offer myself as a Sunday morning speaker about the evils of sexual abuse (one of Satan's greatest weapons against humanity). I teach it with a high...

What Does the Bible Say About Women? An Interview with Dr. Sandra Glahn

I'm so grateful to have Dr. Sandra Glahn with us today. She's one of the editors of Sanctified Sexuality, an important book for the church. She agreed to answer some of my questions, and I'm so grateful! What does the Bible say about a woman's worth after she’s experienced sexual exploitation and/or violence? The Bible says absolutely nothing about a woman’s worth after she has experienced sexual exploitation and/or violence, precisely because there is no change whatsoever in her worth after...

Need healing from trauma? Try poetry.

My new friend Linda who is in one of my writer masterminds writes so poignantly about her past abuse. With her permission, I'm posting these pieces to inspire you to give voice to your past. For whatever reason, I, too, do better writing in stanzas than paragraphs when it comes to my healing. Scroll down to the bottom of this post to find out how you can download Linda's free guided poetry journal. Poetry for Healing By Linda L. Kruschke Sweet Scent of Rain The wafting scent of petrichor Will...

Poetry for the Broken

Sabrina gave me permission to share her work. I pray her words bring you healing. Innocence Lost Where did that innocent little girl go? The one with the pigtails, Playing jump rope.   Do you see her smile? Her carefree laughter, Her hair swaying In the breeze.   She’s swinging her legs Letting the sun caress her face.  She laughs before she jumps  To join her friends and join the race.   One night changed everything  She is carefree no more  She’s curled up on her bed  Trying hard to...

What do you do when your spouse has been abused?

I've received permission to share this email and my response. I've changed his name to protect his identity. I would be dishonest if I wrote that it has been easy on our marriage, my past sexual abuse. We walked into marriage with full disclosure, but we both felt fairly cavalier about it. After all, God had "healed" me, right? Yes, and no. He had begun the process, but it would take many years to walk the healing journey, and I am still walking it. For the first few years, we simply didn't...

I can get discouraged in my fitness journey, particularly in this decade of life. I’m tempted to give up. But thankfully God encouraged me this week as I looked back over my timeline. I have KEPT eating well and exercising for years. The temporary setbacks (inevitable) didn’t derail me from dusting off my workout shoes and try-try-trying again.

Today I ran my first 5K of 2021, and I’m grateful.

I’m the little engine that could in terms of exercise, which encouraged me. I think we’re tempted to only use the scale as our measurement of progress. But I know there are other, less surface-y tangibles that are worth uncovering.

Eating well helps my stomach not revolt. It keeps me alert. Exercise diminishes stress and keeps my worry at bay. I’m stronger than I was last year.

I’m grateful for coaches like @lizfwtfl and @maubro5 and my new friends @cgrockwall who have encouraged me even when they didn’t know it.

As a writer, I am constantly working on a WIP (work in progress). Perhaps We should look at our fitness journey in a similar manner. We are works in progress. We rise. We fall. We rise again. It’s the overall forward momentum that matters.

Don’t be discouraged, friend. Look back in the decade and celebrate your work in progress.

#fitnessforwriters #campgladiatorrockwall #campgladiatordfw #campgladiator #runningforweightloss #runningastherapy #runningintexas #workinprogress #wipfitness #justkeeprunning #progressoverperfection #prayeveryday
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Many of you who follow me here know a bit of my story, particularly my yearlong sexual abuse at five years old. I’d like to highlight a different aspect of it today. When I was in junior high, I was broken beyond belief, incredibly lonely (one of my hopes was for just one friend), and suicidal.

I spent a lot of time alone because my parents didn’t get home until after 9 PM. Since we had 7 horses and acreage, I did chores, learned how to cook, and spent a lot of time in the evenings thinking killers were lurking outside my door (in @enumclaw_chamber WA, hardly a hotbed of crime).

I met with a counselor at my school who saved my life in so many ways. He let me cry as my mom’s third marriage crumbled. A now-fatherless girl, I was devastated. (My biological father died when I was ten).

But still, there were those thoughts of ending myself. And I wrote suicidal poetry. I remember sharing it with a relative, and, instead of being alarmed, she told me it was disturbing and please not to share any more poems with her.

In the 9th grade, a friend invited me to @YoungLife. That was when I learned about Jesus. Every time someone shared about him, I was hooked. Here was God with skin on, someone who loved unconditionally, and enjoyed finding outcasts in the margins. (Um, that was very much me).

The next year I attended a weekend camp, heard the whole gospel, and surrendered to Jesus beneath an evergreen tree one night. In a moment, all those longings to kill myself waned. I felt loved and wanted and seen.

Thus inaugurated a lifelong journey of healing. Jesus has transformed so much of my trauma, though I still battle vestiges of it today. He has given me purpose, a sweet family, and a song to sing. He has empowered my pen, my paintbrushes (though I’m pretty insecure about that), and my voice. It’s now my great joy to share Jesus with you because he really is my everything.

When did you meet him?
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One of the ways I’ve processed this stressful year is to work through my worries by painting with watercolors. I am not a professional artist, but I do love connecting with God through paint. This is something I’ve done for years during Lent (a painting a day). This eventually led to some of you asking me to share that art on @Etsy.

I created 2 packs of 31 Scripture cards earlier this year, representing many books of the Bible. You can find them at marydemuth.com/art.

What has been helpful is this: I uncover a verse that encourages or challenges me, then, because I am painting it, I have to meditate on it, asking God to show me how I can visually represent the key idea held within. Sometimes the thinking takes longer than the painting. I love the connection between image and verse. This exercise has deeply affected my life with Jesus. It has caused me to pause and ponder before I paint.

In light of that, what are you doing this year to connect in different ways with Jesus? Have you picked up a paint brush? A pen? Your running (hiking, walking) shoes? I believe God uses our own creativity and bent to minister to us. (An example: every book I’ve written has been a tool God has used to bring me further healing). So consider honoring the way you’re created. Partner with Jesus in it. And experience connection and breakthrough as you co-create with him.

#powerofprayer #intheword #Biblestudymoments #devotional #seekHimfirst #shereadstruth #morningprayer #wellwateredwomen #womensbiblestudy #goodmorninggirls #readthroughtheBible #butfirstJesus #intheword #womenintheword  #lampandlight #womenlivingwell #verseoftheday #marydemuthart #artandjesus
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This is the cry of my heart today, to know God hears me as I pray.

One of my prayers is decades in the making. What is one of your longterm prayer requests?
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“It’s not faith to step into a known future. It is faith to leap into the great unknown.” What are you stepping into this year that requires great faith? ...

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Thanks @lorewilbert for her reminder today that 100% of the human race is stamped with the image of God, weighted with worth.

Today I accidentally stumbled onto an article about someone who I’ve had a falling out with. My first reaction was a trauma response. But now, I am choosing to pray a blessing over the person. It helps my heart when I do that.
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Do hard things. Climbing a 14er last year was one of the most difficult physical challenges I’ve ever experienced (except for maybe several kidney stone adventures).

I whined, friends. I wish I had just kept quiet, but there were times I gave full vent to my stress. When I finished, I felt sore, proud, relieved, and disappointed in my full venting of emotions.

This has reminded me that I need Jesus and his perspective when life is painful. While it’s not wrong to process out loud, there’s a line I crossed where venting became sin. I am learning the art of reflection and trust. I don’t have to say everything that comes to mind.

I remember a friend telling me this after she eviscerated someone with her words: “I’m just being authentic.” But there’s a big difference between authenticity and saying harmful words.

I made it to the top of Mount Yale, but I regret my over complaining. Sometimes we can do a good thing, or be chasing a noble goal, but if we run off at the mouth, the victory becomes hollow.
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If you DM me, I will consider it a privilege to pray for you. ...

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The cathedral in Bayeux, France is my screen saver. It reminds me of majesty and reverence. I pray that I will always approach God with holy awe.

What’s the prettiest cathedral you’ve seen?
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The truth matters. It changes our perspective. It helps us stay sane and rooted. It reminds us of our place in the world. It sets us free. It informs our worth.

Lies strip us of confidence. They destabilize us. They bring weariness. They undermine our perseverance. They hijack our joy.

So here are a few truths you can sink your heart into today.
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Thank you @amandascgorman for poetry that sings truth, offers hope, and leads hearts forward. ...

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None of us fit the stringent mold of supposed perfection. None of us experience constant success. Many of us have endured being judged and misunderstood based on some external construct.

But what I love about Jesus is that he saw beyond all that and looked at the heart. He saw people where they were and loved them well. He told them the truth. He walked alongside. He empathized with their pain. He personified kingdom living.

I want to be more like that. I don’t want to contribute to the problem of purposefully misunderstanding people based on externals. I need to listen more, love more, and tell the truth with kindness and humility.

I recall a painful bend in my story when I felt pinned by an unfair and unkind judgment. That was one of the deeper wounds I’ve experienced of late. It pressed me to evaluate when I do the same thing. It caused me to examine my heart. I didn’t want to cause the kind of pain I experienced. That’s how the pain of misunderstanding can serve us—to help us NOT act in the same way toward others.

How can I pray for you? How have you been misunderstood, judged, or pigeonholed?

#misunderstanding #jesuseveryday #lovewellcommunity #examineyourheart #dountoothers #liveinkindness #empathymatters
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“To bloom from the dark hardscrabble of the past is its own defiant beauty.” I painted this as a holy declaration that the old has gone and the new awaits.

How has God helped you move beyond your past toward a new, ever-blooming life? What prevents the blossoming today? How can I pray for you in this journey toward wholeness?

#communityofchristiancreatives #artsgram
#artistagram
#womenartistsofinstagram
#artforinstagram
#etsyartwork
#etsyartisan
#etsyartistsofinstagram
#etsyartistofinstagram
#etsyartistshare
#etsyartistsofig
#etsyartistoninstagram
#watercolorartistsofinstagram
#artistwatercolor
#watercolorartistoninstagram
#watercolorartistofinstagram
#christianart
#godspromise
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This is from the book I’m writing about being misunderstood. The Lord has been faithful to supply the words and inspiration. What creative task are you working on today?

#shewritestruth #christianblogger #christianwriter #christianauthor #christianwriters #authorlife #christianbusiness #christianbook #devotional #devo #faithblogger #christianblog #gritandvirtue
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Happy #martinlutherkingjrday friends. Here’s my wee contribution to the conversation.

#artistsforchange #mlkquotes #jesuseveryday #imagodei #jesuslovesthelittlechildren
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It’s ok to grieve. In fact it’s important to. I would say the height of your joy is in proportion to the depth of your grief. ...

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They say that neglect is one of the hardest things to recover from because it means you’ve been unacknowledged, unrecognized, unseen.

So my adult life has been a story of compensating for that early neglect—a longing to be seen.

In high school, a wise counselor pulled me aside and said, “You are Mary of many talents.” He went on to explain that I had been gifted in a few areas, but because I was so busy trying to be noticed, I had failed to notice others.

His words shook me. I realized that I needed healing in this need-to-be-noticed issue.

That commenced from learning that I am beloved of God. That belovedness couldn’t help but spill over into how I cared for and noticed others.

So now what I do is try to use my past pain as empathy for others—to realize that my need to be noticed is also in others as well. I gain far more joy in recognizing another than I do in being recognized.

So if you compliment me, and I don’t respond effusively, it may be because of this. I’m almost afraid to accept praise because I’m trying to compensate for my earlier neediness. I hope this makes sense?

Art print is included at marydemuth.com/art.

#childhoodneglect #livingforpraise #youareloved❤️ #noticethepainofothers #jesuseveryday #empathymatters #useyourpainforgood #youarebeloved
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To listen, friend, is to love.

Who is the best listener in your life?

I know many: @sandraglahn @jkmath6 @rebeccacarrell @fivepointslakefork @mateeranne @sophiedemuth @rockwallcac @suzanne.eller @lagarfias to name a few.

#jesuseveryday #listeningequalslove #listenwell #loveoneanother❤️ #bealistener
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In case you needed the reminder. ...

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