Rachel Welcher is an editor at Fathom Magazine, a poet, and an author whose book Talking Back to Purity Culture: Rediscovering Faithful Christian Sexuality is about to be released. Today, Rachel shares how she followed all the purity culture rules before marriage, how she felt when her marriage ended in divorce, and developing a more holistic sexual ethic. Rachel’s story reminds us that God wants our hearts no matter what our circumstances are.
Listen to Rachel’s story now!
Stories Rachel shared:
- Growing up in Northern California as a pastor’s kid
- Realizing at age 11 that she could have her own a relationship with God
- Having a “blessed life” without suffering through her mid 20s
- Following all the rules as she dated her first husband
- Her husband’s crisis of faith that created her own
- Why “it could have been worse” doesn’t bring comfort
- The friend who allowed her to lament
- Dealing with shame and depression after her divorce
- What the Lord taught her through wrestling with him
- Learning that following Jesus doesn’t require all of her previous theological commitments
- Going to graduate school at St. Andrews
- Beginning to be published as a writer
- Discovering that spiritual disciplines are not a replacement for necessary medication
- Why she loves writing poetry
- Deciding to reread purity culture books for how they impact a victim of sexual abuse
Great quotes from Rachel:
Doing the right things does not guarantee a good inner life.
God can allow great suffering for his children and still love us.
The calling to honor God with our sexuality doesn’t end at the alter.
What if we talk to teenagers about the spiritual growth through periods of unmet longing?
Resources we mentioned:
- Rachel’s website
- Rachel’s Twitter
- Talking Back to Purity Culture: Rediscovering Faithful Christian Sexuality by Rachel Joy Welcher
- Two Funerals, Then Easter by Rachel Joy Welcher
- Lament for a Son by Nicholas Wolterstorff
- The Ragamuffin Gospel: Good News for the Bedraggled, Beat-Up, and Burnt Out