Last week several bloggers wrote about the book Fifty Shades of Grey and the popularity it has gained with women – particularly mommies – which has given it the nickname “mommy porn”. Some of these blog posts created quite a heated discussion among all women including Christian women.
A few mindsets that resonated with me the most as I read the posts about Fifty Shades of Grey and comments from the readers are “If you read it, it’s not as bad as it seems”, “There’s an element of redemption in the story”, “They get married at the end”, and “It’s fiction. Me reading that book will not make be become that character or do those things.”
This post is a follow-up response to that last statement in order to share with you a real-life story of a woman who was caught up in a similar lifestyle and who is now on the other side, redeemed by the blood of Jesus.
After my post, “Fifty Shades of Grey: A Game Plan“, she wrote the comment below. She signed her name “Redeemed”.
Before you read the comment, I just want to express my sincere appreciation to her for having the courage to share her story with us. This is a Jesus miracle, the kind that changes lives and shows His almighty glory. It is very scary to be vulnerable, step out in faith, and not be held under the bondage of the enemy’s lies about the past any longer. When I asked her if I could feature her comment in this post, she admitted to me how much courage it took to write it. But she also said, “Neither my silence or fear can bring Him glory – my testimony can”. She asked me to publish her comment with her real name, which I will do below.
Your points are well made and well received. I’m honestly as worried about the publicity this book gets in the Christian community as it does in the secular. As a woman who did fall prey to this type of lifestyle and subverting belief system enough to welcome two tattoos that marked me as a slave girl and as a possession, it burdens my heart for the women who are presently lost in or susceptible to believing lies that make appealing the idea of subjugation equating to love/acceptance/affection. It isn’t that these lies are more destructive than any of the other lies that we’re apt to believe about ourselves above the truth that God reveals to us about who we truly are – but this issue pulls upon scarred over wounds of a 30 year lifespan of seeking love, acceptance and affection from source after failing source until I believed that submitting myself in this manner would be Utopia – and I’m not exaggerating this point.
Once upon a time, I served in leadership positions within the alternative lifestyle community, and was the facilitator of a special interest group designed specifically for women who went far deeper than to classify themselves as “merely” submissive – we were slaves by choice, we were considered the elite in feminine subservience. And we believed it and wore that moniker with pride. So much pride that I personally spent a great deal of time reasoning and contending the sacredness of that position and that type of relationship in many different media sources – and if someone still in that lifestyle were to ever read your post they would do the same. And they would as well likely tell you that I simply must have had a bad experience, or the wrong relationship/partner, or become disgruntled or disillusioned somehow – that I can’t speak for those who truly know and live what they believe to be the truth. I remember believing it that deeply and devotedly.
I say all of this to say that I know that this book is dangerous. It is a toxic product disguised in a tempting package – as is all sin. It’s just another source to delude, and to lull. Satan knows that if sin came to us in the form of a bucket of puss we wouldn’t be tempted to partake – and for many this book wouldn’t begin to be tempting because it can clearly be seen for what it is, but for others it is craftily disguised. To see women who claim to be Christian at the same time claim that this book isn’t harmful or sinful has brought home to me once again how evil our enemy is, how conniving and constant his pursuit is, and how perceptive his accuracy is at finding the slightest openings in us to create strongholds for us in hopes to separate us from God.
Friends, this is real life.
The most dangerous belief a person can have about herself is the belief that she is not capable of any, every, and all sin.
But let’s just say that you can read this book and not fall into this lifestyle. I know that I am capable of falling into a lifestyle such as this, but I don’t know that I would immediately adopt it after reading this book. I think the consequences would be much more subtle, probably so subtle that I wouldn’t even recognize them for a while.
Even if you feel completely unaffected and still believe that you can read this book and be o.k., I ask you to consider this:
There are more slaves, sexual and otherwise, in the world today than there were during the African slave trade.
Books such as this do not help that problem.
No, this book is not about human trafficking, and I am not trying to insinuate that it is, but my point is that this book glamorizes a form of abuse which then minimizes similar abuse that women experience in real life all over the world.
If for no other reason, don’t read this book in honor of the women who are being shipped in crates across government borders through human trafficking. Women who are beat and raped and don’t have a choice.
How would they feel about a book that glamorizes their nightmare? How does the reader who shared her story above feel?
Sometimes our decisions aren’t about us. They’re about what we’re supporting – who we’re supporting.
** 5/19/14 This is a follow-up to the post above. I just finished the book Pulling Back the Shades by Dannah Gresh and Dr. Juli Slattery. I will be writing a review this week, but in the meantime, if you are struggling with erotica in any way, I highly recommend this book. If you think reading erotica is “okay” or “not going to hurt you”, please read this book. And if you are a Christian woman who is struggling, most definitely, please read this book. Pulling Back the Shades will explain to you God’s amazing plan for your sexuality, and that erotica will hurt you.
What are your thoughts about this testimony, this issue, and the controversy over this book?