What does a former abuser talk about at a Christian college? Repentance.
On February 3, 2013, Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice was riding high. That was the day he helped his team win the Super Bowl in a historic game against the San Francisco 49ers.
But just one year later, Rice hit rock bottom after being caught on camera brutally knocking his then-fiancée unconscious in the elevator of an Atlantic City casino. After the dramatic and disturbing video footage was leaked on TMZ for all the world to see, Rice was fired by the Ravens, and he hasn’t played professional ball since.
Now Rice has a story to tell, a story of how this was the turning point in a lifetime characterized by various kinds of abuses and a deformed image of what it means to be a man.
This week 30-year-old Rice shared that story at Liberty University in a special, extended convocation that featured the former NFL player along with a panel of students, administrators, and counselors who shared stories of domestic violence as well as avenues of change and resources for help. (The entire convocation can be viewed here.)
The unceasing revelations of recent days of ongoing abuse and harassment by celebrities, leaders, and politicians leave the church with myriad questions, including how to prevent such actions and how to respond to both victims and abusers.
As one victim of domestic abuse at the hands of her minister husband, Ruth Tucker writes, “For too long we’ve let external appearances, assumptions about socioeconomic status or education levels, or even a ‘spiritual’ veneer and churchy language hide patterns of abuse.”
Another question, however, perhaps the hardest one amid the rawness of these revelations, is this: If we want abusers to repent and be restored, what will we do to facilitate …
Source: Christianity Today Most Read