An Apology (from a true love waits leader)

An Apology (from a true love waits leader) October 13, 2022

I’m sorry.

I see now the damage that was done.

Standing in front of you sweet kids.

Telling you to do what I hadn’t even done.

Giving you the little purity talk.

Having you sign the True Love Waits commitment card.

Handing you a TLW Bible.

Putting a purity ring on your finger.

I was pushing the purity culture agenda.

Making it seem like it was the cure-all.

Those videos we had you watch?

They were driven by fear.

I can still hear Pam’s voice in my head.

It was just fear mongering at its finest.

I looked her up the other day.

She is still the same.

Spreading the same message.

And just as angry as ever.

Why did I like it?

How could I have not seen?

Again, I’m so sorry.

I dumped a heavy burden on your backs.

One that no one should ever have to carry.

It breaks my heart when I think about it.

Telling you all that it was your responsibility.

Making you believe your bodies were nothing but a sexual temptation.

Don’t cause your brother to stumble.

Watch what you wear.

How you walk.

How you talk.

Those boys are weak.

You be strong.

The message was all kinds of messed up.

Don’t kiss.

Don’t date.

Don’t even think about any of it.

Not even a hint of sexual immorality.

Ugh.

I’m having a hard time forgiving myself.

I’ve been in therapy for it.

Wanting to take back those evenings.

Get you all together in one spot to ask for forgiveness.

Hearing the stories of regret.

The guilt and shame you have carried for years.

Into your marriages.

Into your relationships.

Into your adulthood.

Some of you are forty years old now.

Having kids of your own.

Trying to figure out what to say to them.

Wanting to tread lightly so they will not be scarred.

What I have learned more than anything else over these years?

Perfect love drives out fear.

Fear doesn’t drive out fear.

God’s kindness does.

Not fear.

Jesus said his yoke was easy.

His burden was light.

We told you Jesus loves you.

And then gave you a yoke that never came from him.

A burden you were never meant to carry.

I’m so very sorry.

I am humbled beyond words.

I put stipulations on God’s love for you.

Conditions on God’s grace.

Instead of the ring being a comfort?

I know now it became a source of condemnation for so many.

A constant reminder of failed promises.

Ones you should have never been led to make.

I did this.

I take ownership for my part in it all.

I know better now.

I know more than ever that I don’t have all the answers.

And when you know better?

You do better.

God gave us our bodies.

Our sexuality.

Our desires.

I tried to take it all away.

Believing it would keep you safe.

God wants us to free.

Free to love and be loved.

I want my story to be one of declaring this love.

No more burdens.

No more being defined by our sexuality.

Defined by love.

That is all.

Defined by love.

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