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We Were the Least of These: Reading the Bible with Survivors of Sexual Abuse
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We Were the Least of These: Reading the Bible with Survivors of Sexual Abuse

Author: Heath, Elaine A.
Your Price: $14.09
Retail Price:$20.00
Your Savings:$5.91(30%)
ISBN: 1587432714 / 9781587432712
Format: Paperback
Publisher: Brazos Press
Release Date: 2011-05-01
Condition: New with remainder mark.
Availability: 1 in stock Free Shipping with $35+ Order
Much of what is written about abuse and the Bible focuses on the ways Scripture is used to hurt rather than heal. This accessibly written book provides a much-needed perspective, illuminating the good news of healing and liberation that the Bible offers survivors of sexual abuse. As a theologian and survivor of abuse herself, Elaine Heath handles this sensitive topic with compassion and grace. She offers a close reading of several biblical passages that have proven to be profoundly healing for her and for other survivors. The book is illustrated with stories and insights from sexual abuse survivors who have experienced healing through the Bible in order to bring hope and encouragement to victims. It will be welcome reading for those who have suffered from abuse as well as for pastors, counselors, therapists, and others who minister to them. Each chapter ends with two sets of reflection questions and recommended activities--one set for survivors and another for those who journey with them.
1. We Were the Least of These
2. Fig Leaves
3. Through the Wilderness
4. The Terrible Secret
5. Beauty Pageants
6. Prayers of Lament and Mercy
7. Are You My Mother?
8. Eunuchs
9. We Are Clean
10. About Judas and Mary
11. Emmanuel
12. In Remembrance of Me
13. Letting Go
14. Final Thoughts
Appendix A: Clouds of Love
Appendix B: A Definition of Sexual Abuse


"The journey toward healing can be a lonely one for survivors of sexual abuse who feel--and often are treated--like 'the least of these' children of God. Imagine the surprise ending: Jesus himself was the least of these! For Elaine Heath, this ending is just the beginning. This book fills a gap in the literature, and I affirm its value as a professor, pastoral counselor, and minister."--Jeanne Stevenson-Moessner, professor of pastoral care, Perkins School of Theology, Southern Methodist University; fellow, American Association of Pastoral Counselors

"Sexual trauma survivors have long felt uncomfortable, out of place, and even ostracized within the church. For many victims, reading the Bible is a painful and even re-victimizing experience. Finally, Elaine Heath has provided a welcome reframing of Scripture for survivors of sexual abuse. We Were the Least of These offers a compassionate, theologically sound reading of biblical stories and shares a healing, redemptive perspective. As a survivor of sexual abuse and a counselor who has worked with hundreds of hurting victims, I highly recommend We Were the Least of These and thank the author for her invaluable contribution to our healing."--Marnie C. Ferree, executive director, Bethesda Workshops for Sexual Addiction Recovery; author, No Stones: Women Redeemed from Sexual Addiction

"Join Elaine Heath in reading the Bible from the perspective of survivors of sexual abuse and see texts in ways you have not seen them before. This is not, however, just a book of new insights. Heath skillfully and pastorally weaves together biblical stories, stories of survivors, and reflection questions. It is a healing, liberating, life-giving book."--Mark D. Baker, associate professor of mission and theology, Fresno Pacific Biblical Seminary; author, Proclaiming the Scandal of the Cross

"Elaine Heath has offered a powerful and thought-provoking perspective on Scripture. At times the book made my head do a 180-degree turn, and when it did I found my head was aligned with what my heart already knew. As a survivor of childhood molestation and pastor to countless people who too have survived sexual abuse, I am grateful. Heath has provided a fresh set of eyes and a new, life-giving way of thinking about Scripture that promotes healing and recovery of the sacred and of the relationship with the Beloved who first loved us."--Juanita Campbell Rasmus, copastor, St. John's United Methodist Church, Houston, Texas

"As both a trauma survivor and a comforter to brothers and sisters who have been broken at the hands of those who should have modeled Christ to them, Elaine Heath understands only too well the devastation of sexual abuse. She has earned the right to speak and to be heard, and what a powerful voice she has. For over twenty years, I have been privileged to watch Elaine as she has educated and encouraged the powerful and influential to become humble paracletes, those who 'come alongside' another in their journey of healing. This book is a work of courage, love, and great wisdom. Every counselor, pastor, and caring lay person needs to read We Were the Least of These and use it in his or her ministry."--Morven R. Baker, director, Ashland Women's Counseling Center, Ashland, Ohio

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