Thursday, February 20, 2014

The Day My Blog Blew Up: A Follow-Up


Pull up a chair and get yourself comfy, my few and loyal blog readers. This one's gonna be long-winded, which is why I have put off writing it for months and months. It's also fueled by some significant emotion. I don't feel angry or sad or embarrassed. Mostly I feel a bit resigned, a bit disheartened, and a bit frustrated.

You see, it all started with this little blog post about Beth Moore. That one post has been by far my most popular blog post ever on this blog. Currently it is at 1300 views total and has been viewed over 10 times in the past hour, here 14 months after I first published it. When I pressed the "publish blog" button I did so with a deep sigh and braced myself for the flack that would follow. I was not...umm...err...dissappointed? As you can see from the screenshot above, there are over 61 comments that are still "awaiting moderation." That means that I haven't approved these comments, both positive and negative ones. I did approve many comments--ones that trashed me and ones that were supportive. However, after the comments kept coming and coming and coming, I decided that I would no longer accept any more comments period--good, bad, or otherwise and I posted a final comment to that effect. However, just this past week I have received two lovely emails in response. I do appreciate those.

As I am writing now, with full knowledge that I am long-winded and have a lot ot say about this topic (which is why I have put this blog post off for so long), I think I will break this up into 2 separate posts. The "thesis" of this post will be to share some of the positive and negative comments, some approved and some not, and rebut them. Tomorrow or later this weekend, I'll delve into the more philosophical and spiritual issues at play, including judgment, hypocrisy, criticism, argument, and grace.

For starters, here's a comment that kind of sums up the firestorm:

WOW Pam, bless your heart, did you ever imagine when you were writing that post that so many would be the first to throw a stone.

Yes. Yes, I did. And that makes me kinda sad...that my instinct came to pass. That I anticipated that Christians would respond in judgment and hatred. I heard the term "Christian cannibal" today for the first time and it's unfortunately pretty darn accurate.

The Good

I'll start with excerpts from some of the more positive, or at least thoughtful, comments:

I stumbled across your blog and just had to read it because I have been a BM fan for a long time and now not so much. I haven't completely given up her studies, but I just find that I'm looking for something different sometimes as I'm growing spiritually. There's nothing wrong with Beth if that's what you like. She is long-winded sometimes when I just want a concise statement. I don't always complete the homework, but I do try to at least read it. I have found that I identify with some pastors better than others even though they are all preaching truth. Some preach with more depth, some with humor, some with other things and in different seasons of my life, different things appeal to me. Different strokes for different folks. Nothing wrong with expressing your opinion and quite frankly, no one's opinion is going to stop me from listening to someone I like. I just try to say the person doesn't appeal to me at this time so I won't get some of the comments you received. :-)

Overall, a balanced and kind comment, but how sad that she feels she can't truly state her opinion because she's afraid of the backlash.

You have to do what you feel is best! Don't feel badly about it-everyone loves Beth Moore! I would not worry about it so much-by terming it "breaking up"-but I get the point. I must say that the following she encourages borders on the "cult-like"'s madness to be so attached to Beth! It is my opinion that it borders on being co-dependent. Jesus is who we need to fight for, to depend on and to attach ourselves to. I am sure Beth would agree. : )

I agree, that the attachment is often to Beth and that she herself wouldn't want that. I think this person makes some perceptive and valid comments about the cult-like, codependent issues that surround Beth Moore--that she hasn't created and I am sure, doesn't condone.

I came across this blog because lately I've begun to wonder if women are following Jesus or Beth Moore. Every time I turn around, I hear "Beth Moore" Bible Study. Yes, she may be a wonderful speaker; but this is about Jesus....not Beth Moore. I think the Christian community has made her an idol. Enough said. God gave us his word, let just see what he has to say.

Different version, same sentiment

I am saddened by the comments to Pam's personal blog. This is exactly why we need Pastors Wives Conferences. Obviously, pastors wives are still being held to a standard of perfection (which we are not) and aren't allowed to have opinions about anything. Pam simply wrote from her heart and then gets slandered for speaking what she has been struggling with. Women-before you seek to pass judgements on an issue that one woman has with a particular Bible study, ask yourself if you passed judgement or openly voiced your opinion on the men who set off the bombs at the Boston marathon, or a particular political party, or the person on the side of the street asking for money. We all do it, even I am guilty. We should be supportive, offer suggestions, and ask how we can pray for each other, not be a stumbling block.

I really appreciated this comment. Unfortunately, this poor soul had several other people ream her out for her support of me in reply comments, which I intentionally did not approve because they were so hateful and mean-spirited. I especially liked that she stated that since I am a PW that apparently can't have or express an opinion. She said that because many of the comments were to the effect of "I would expect more of you because you're a PW for crying out loud!" More on that in the next post.

Pam, It's good that you broke up with BM. Your reasoning should have been more along the lines of her lack of theology and improper exegesis of scripture. See

I also received several comments about Beth's lack of theology, taking passages out of context, and interpreting scripture through a historically inaccurate lens. Some people also commented on some of her spiritual practices such lectio divinia, which I personally have no problem with, but I can see why some evangelicals do. It's not a huge deal to me one way or the other though.

The Bad

If Beth Moore's studies and presentation do not appeal to you, just move on. Why do you feel the need to blog about your distaste for her style? It's really disappointing to hear a pastor's wife talking unkindly about someone else in ministry, especially in a public forum. You come across as petty and jealous. Instead of writing this blog maybe you could have spent time praying for all those who minister to women in this country and around the world.

Instead of writing this comment, maybe you could spend time praying for my petty and jealous soul? Yes, I am fully aware that I am responding with snarkiness. Seriously, this commenter is doing exactly what she is accusing me of doing, except with more direct, harsh, and negative words.

Well I love Beth Moore I have had a life like hers and get over yourselves .She has saved more people then you have so before anyone else says something clean up your own back yard before you cast your stones.

First off, this woman doesn't know anything about me. She is making some big assumptions about how many people I have "saved." Secondly, I haven't saved anyone. Neither has Beth Moore. God does the saving. True, He uses people in the process, but the theology in this comment is very incorrect. Also, the statement "I love Beth Moore and I have had a life like hers" is not a fact or an argument. It is an opinion.

"Love one another..." So what, Beth Moore is different than many of us? Let's be pro-active in lifting each other up instead of mimicking today's television shows and worldly attitudes that only tear down other people and point out their flaws. Maybe some pastors wife's should get out there and teach and give sound advice and better leadership examples as well instead of sitting home whining and criticizing those who do!!

I love how anonymous people have so many good opinions about better ways that I can live my life. Sidenote: when someone chooses to be anonymous, then his/her opinion ceases to be valid. You have to stand behind your argument.

Your opinion of Beth Moore is just that....your opinion. There is no need for you to spew your nasty venom and try to cast a negative light on her ministry. You of all people being a Pastors wife should welcome any one who is pointing the way to a stronger relationship with Jesus, not trying to put her down just because she has a southern accent! Beth is helping so so many women and I am sure men as well and what are you doing.....writting a blog about the homework, oh my gosh, how horribe! I am glad I came across this so I can at least say my peace about your hurtful words about a wonderful christian sister in Christ. Maybe you should use your time more wisely and be encouraging and uplifting instead oh tearing down the people God has annointed to do His will. I certainly hope and pray you don't discourage anyone from seeking God through Beths bible studies because of your shallow comments. She is a precious child of God and she has helped me and inspired me to seek God and trust.

Obviously this person misunderstood some of my blog. I'm pretty sure that I wasn't putting down Beth's southern accent, since I have a southern accent too. Again, I have a complete stranger telling me how I could be more wisely using my time. And aren't we all "anointed" to do God's will? I don't think that Beth Moore is more called than you or me. Finally, the whole bit about discouraging anyone from seek God through Beth's Bible studies...I just don't even know how to respond to that. That makes me so sad. Not that the person posted that, but that her view of God is such that she apparently thinks that God is so limited that if someone doesn't do a Beth Moore Bible study, she might miss God along the way. Again, the theology throughout this comment is broken.

The Ugly

Pam Terrel,we are all entitled to opinions, that is true. I heard about your personal blog through my mother-in-law, after I told her about Beth Moore. Mind you, my mother-in-law is someone who is struggling to have a meaningful relationship with Jesus, who has been through several abuses in her life and REALLY needs Jesus. I had told her that I've been going to a BM Bible study and I'm learning a lot, that she might want to join me. She was excited about what I told her and said she was coming with me. She decides to google Beth Moore and she stumbles upon your blog. Then she looks at me and says: "This pastor's wife is breaking up with Beth Moore because she's futile and only cares about superficial things. Beth Moore was in Africa and all she could think about was her curler, for God's sake! And if this lady is a pastor's wife, she knows what she is talking about." No need to say she didn't come with me today. Someone here defended you saying that we all expect a pastor wife to be perfect, but I don't think it's about perfection. I believe that a pastor and his family are role models, specially to non-believers. The Bible says "we are surrounded by a great cloud of witnesses" and I guarantee that when you wrote this article you'd never imagine that you'd push a woman in New Jersey further from God. And I don't know how many others. You are, indeed, entitled to break up with Beth Moore. You are, indeed, entitled to disagree with her. Women in Wisconsin are entitled to not agree with her. Beth Moore will NOT please and cover the needs of all women's on earth. For those women she is not able to help, God will send another vessel. And He'll keep working in His church.

Again, wow! Some of these women are giving me way too much credit and influence if they think my one little blog post, consisting of my one little opinion (that Beth Moore isn't very relevant to the Upper Midwest mindset) can actually push people further from God. God is so much bigger than me and my opinions. Instead I fear that the Christian cannibalism in the comments did more harm than my one simple blog post. But...more on that later.

P.S., Several people mentioned that they were mad that my blog post was one of the first that popped up when they did a Google search on "Beth Moore." As if I had any control of that...The funny thing is that the more they clicked on it and commented, the more they drove it up in Google analytics :-)

Oh! And I will accept and moderate comments on this post. Comments don't have to be positive for me to approve them, so feel free to disagree. However, they must be thoughtful and respectful.



  1. I sit and shake my head friend because I totally hear you......and send you (((((((huge buckets of love))))))

  2. Didn't even know who Beth Moore was. Sounds like people need to quit pretended that Beth Moore is their best friend and also realize that YOU are a real person with real opinions and emotions. I think that they missed the message that Beth Moore simply doesn't connect with all audiences. So many of those comments were such an overreaction.

    Sidenote: regarding the girl who's mother in law who didnt attend the bible study. If one blog post was enough to deter her from attending then it sounds like she was probably going to find a reason not to go anyway.

    1. Leslie, my thoughts exactly about the MIL — I think she was looking for excuses not to go and would've looked for another one eventually.

      Pam, I read your original post today for the first time which garnered and quite frankly I didn't see anything offensive or wrong about it. In fact I thought your points were valid and simple. Last I checked, it's still a free country and you're allowed to have an opinion about Beth Moore and so am I. Don't let the naysayers throw you. :)

  3. Pam- as someone who knew you LONG ago, I congratulate on your ability to remain true to yourself and your beliefs. You are the same sweet girl I knew. I have not even finished reading the comments, but I am appalled by how these 'Christians' are treating you. I always knew that being married to a man of the cloth (regardless of religion) is difficult. I know Rabbis' wives and children are expected to be perfect also. I did not think you 'slammed' Beth Moore or even preached that people should not read her works. I felt you just said, "Hey, this isn't for me". You SHOULD be allowed to state an opinion, regardless of who you are married to. Hang in there and Good for you! Love- your Jewish friend- Joy

  4. What you wrote about Beth Moore was your opinion of her teaching style and her Bible studies. We all have opinions, including the people who left the bad/ugly comments. Yes, they were attacking you, and unkindly so, but they love Beth Moore, and they were reacting the same way you probably would if someone you love was publicly criticized. Whether they should love her is a whole other question, but your post was not about that.

    False teaching should be called out. However, wouldn’t you agree that it would probably be better if opinions were usually kept to oneself, especially among the body of Christ? What our moms taught us really is true…if you don’t have something nice to say…

    On a side note, it is sad that you seem to resent being held to a higher standard. Leaders will be judged with greater strictness (James 3:1). I don’t know whether pastors’ wives are considered leaders, but I would imagine that for most people their pastor’s wife’s opinion carries more weight than the average sister’s does. If this is true, it calls for great discretion.

    I hope I have not come across unkindly in my comments; I truly don’t mean to be, but it’s hard to know how someone will take a written comment when they can’t hear the concern in the commenter’s voice or see it on their face. Please believe that it is concern that prompts me to comment.

    1. What are opinions if kept to oneself? Just thoughts? Peoples opinions are what shape our society and also help us to become a better society. Being complacent and silent are dangerous. If no one speaks out then there can be no forward progress and a lack of learning from one another. It is our duty as consumers of knowledge and the flock of a church to judge the quality and validity of what we are being taught and preached, this is done through our opinions. Just my 2 cents.

    2. "It is our duty as consumers of knowledge and the flock of a church to judge the quality and validity of what we are being taught and preached, this is done through our opinions."

      With all due respect, I think we're supposed to be judging things through the Scriptures rather than our opinions. Here are a few that pertain to the topic at hand:

      A fool takes no pleasure in understanding, but only in expressing his opinion. Proverbs 18:2

      Whoever belittles his neighbor lacks sense, but a man of understanding remains silent. Proverbs 11:12

      A prudent man conceals knowledge, but the heart of fools proclaims folly. Proverbs 12:23

      I know these seem harsh, but they're not my opinions, they're God's. We all need to take them to heart; may He give us the strength and will to do so, for His glory and our blessing.

      (again, I'm not a Beth Moore fan - she has some serious issues with false teaching that should be discussed because people need to be warned, but opinions of her style are not in the same category)

  5. I don't know if this makes any difference, but I should have mentioned that I actually agree with your opinions. I'm just not sure it was edifying to share them, and that should be taken into consideration when deciding what to share and what not to share, especially when we're talking about brothers and sisters in Christ. John 13:35 The testimony of Christ is at stake.

  6. I also broke up with BM, and appreciate your posts. I refer people who are curious to The End Time blog, for specific examples of how to discern her teachings from the truth.

  7. I have been reading this post and the one you wrote about Beth Moore, and wondered if I should even comment...but decided to give it a whirl. There is so much to this topic and everyone has their own experiences/point of view.
    As I considered this I realized there are two main points that I would want to address and they are 1). do you as a blog author have a right (within a free, democratic society), to express your opinion and expect fair treatment (i.e., without repercussion or fear of being abused verbally) 2.) are we (as I assume the majority of your readers are), as fellow Christians, examining what is being any Christian leader?
    I used to love Beth Moore studies. I loved the homework, I loved being 'in the Word', I loved learning....but then my husband and I discovered the dangers of contemplative prayer (some call it 'listening prayer'), a meditative/'clear your mind and then God will speak to you' transcendental meditation-type of practice that was creeping into the church. That would be another topic altogether were it not for the fact that in our researching this, we came across several articles that claimed that Beth Moore endorsed contemplative spirituality.
    It is not ' bad' to state your opinion in your blog. I hope that many reading your posts, would begin to do their own 'homework' and rather than judge your writings as a personal attack, imitate the Bereans who were commended for their zeal with measuring teachings with Scripture, and that they would also begin to ask questions and compare what Ms. Moore is teaching with Scripture.
    When I did the "Believing God" study there were some things said by Beth in the online videos, that I really began to wonder about, especially since she seemed to endorse a particular denomination that I knew was works-based, a denomination I had grown up in (and so was very familiar with!) and knew that if I trusted in its' teachings, I would not be a Christian today. I remembered how freeing it was when someone explained to me the Gospel and I prayed with them to receive Christ. I had learned *about* Christ but I never knew that His death was sufficient for my salvation, because the teachings I grew up with were salvation-by-works. However, if I listened to the teaching of Beth Moore in one video session that I especially remember (although I admit it's been years), I would probably feel quite complacent and comfortable were I still a member of that particular denomination (and hopefully, someone, sometime, would explain to me what 'real' salvation was....since being a member of that particular denomination was not going to guarantee my salvation, no matter what Beth Moore seemed to think).
    Having seen and experienced firsthand now, what happens when false teaching becomes popular and widely accepted (having seen it's 'fruit'), and in turn, what (sadly and grievously) often happens when Christians oppose and openly expose false teachers, I hope that your readers will follow the exhortations in the New Testament -- 'hold fast to what is good' (the pure Word of God), and 'test everything', including (gasp!) popular teachers like Beth Moore.

  8. Pam, I found your blog, when I did a google search for pastor's wife blogs. and this is the entry that popped up. I am glad it did. I appreciate your honesty and I look forward to reading many more of your posts. I am a soon to be pastor's wife from southern Wisconsin. My husband is still in seminary. I have some questions and observations that I think you may be able to give some insight into but I don't want put them on a public forum do you have a email that you would be willing to share.

  9. Oh, my goodness. I loved your blog and found it truthfully humorous. It seems that you stirred up some controversy among those who esteem an individual more than Jesus. The nasty attacks were unwarranted and un Christian. I agree with Theresa and would encourage all to be good Berean and study the Scriptures and to yest all things. Follow people blindly and you will most certainly end up in the ditch. Study the word..... .I had to laugh about the mother in law who refused to go to BM's. I thought God not Beth Moore was responsible to save. Silly me.

  10. I think we're too apt to take things personally. You're from the mid-west and I'm from the south, but I am not offended because you don't relate to certain southern expressions. On the other hand people in Texas have been known to make fun of anyone north of the Mason-Dixon line. When we have a blog and express ourselves in a post it's our opinion and we're free to share, but this opens up other people sharing how they feel about what we've expressed.

  11. Wow! Pam, I came across your blog and original post about "breaking up with Beth Moore" because: A friend of mine who is the Wife of a Church Music Director invited me to a BM workshop. I love this friend. We don't know each other well, but have shared some important difficulties in our life, and have been of service to one another. I do not belong to a religion or a church, but I have a relationship with God. So, I do not call myself a Christian, and my MIL would agree that I am not one - she is a Christian. So, why am I commenting? I was searching for more information about BM and stumbled upon your blog, and the entire pouring out of comments and vitriol in response to your post. This is the information I needed to find out, before responding to the invitation to participate in the BM Workshop. I will be declining, thanks to your insight into why you left the BM way, and also because of the "so-called Christian" responders who attacked you for sharing your findings and opinions. I will thank God for putting this in my path, so that I can continue to work toward and live a life that I believe Jesus was modeling for us mere humans. I have a relationship with God most deeply now as a result of joining Al Anon. And in those "rooms", to paraphrase, "we love each other in a special way, even if we don't agree or like what someone says.." The most caring and Christian-like people I have met have been at these non-religious meetings. I am a grateful member. Thank you, Pam!

  12. I found the blog full of personal insults. ("I'm breaking up with you, Beth Moore.") I heard her speak on TV today and she referred to being very hurt by this (I didn't know at the time what she was talking about) and felt accused of teaching something she doesn't even believe in (contemplative spirituality). Whether you meant to or not, voicing your opinion (seemed more like an attack to me) hurt her deeply and you need to seek her forgiveness. She is your sister in Christ and that is so much more important than any opinion you may have of her. Did you "speak the truth in love"? Nope, no way.

  13. What is really discouraging and disturbing is "christian folk" hurling hateful comments. You have to step back and evaluate why you are in this thing. As a PW people think we are supposed to never have a constructive, important or any kind of opinion. Really? I enjoyed the article. The bottom line is if it's not lining up with the Word of God it's pointless.

  14. Pam, I just have one question--whether or not I agree with you is irrelevant. I'm inquiring what, especially as a pastor's wife, were you trying to accomplish with these blogs slamming Beth Moore?

  15. Beth Moore needs to curb her coffee intake. I know she has her fans, and God bless her for her passion for the Word. But she leaves me jittery.

  16. WOW! I stumbled across your blog as well, and I am also a blogger ( The thing about blogs that people need to understand is that it's, as you called it, your living room. It belongs to you and last I checked, we live in a county that still encourages free speech. We are entitled to write anything we want to because it's our blog. It's why I love blogging. There are no restrictions; no one can tell us that it does or does not conform to policy. I thought your blog was great. It was humorous and I didn't get the feeling that you were trying to influence anyone; just stating your opinion and some Mid-Western facts. I can totally see these women sitting in your living room (the real one) and not laughing at her girly humor. Sometimes it's a bit much for me too. But I think her teachings are great. Like everything else in this world, not everything is for everyone. That's why there are options. Before we point fingers we ought to notice the two pointing back at ourselves. And it really irks me when people tell others what they "should" do. Really? When did you become the boss of me? I'm going to subscribe to your blog; I'm not a PW, but I love your honesty and humor ...I just blogged about Taking a Pass on Passing Judgment the other day. Glad that you're following through with this and not avoiding the comments. Good for you!

  17. Wow, thanks so much for the blog post, Pam. I've never been a BM groupie, and never will be. Having read several of her books - most recently, "When Godly People do Ungodly Things", I truly don't understand how millions of women flock to her studies and adore her. Not only is this book essentially about Satan, the incidences of "I, me, myself, mine" occur so often, one wonders if it's not the "Gospel According to Beth Moore". Not only that, reading with an eye toward how often the phrases, "I believe", "May I suggest", and "I think" show up with no biblical follow-up is crazy. Furthermore, she's constantly yanking the rope from Old Covenant to New Covenant. Is it really the grace of God that will heal and restore me? Or do I I I I I I have to do all these things with everything that is in ME to be healed and restored? It's very confusing, and God is not the author of confusion. It's not an opening up of the Word of God - let's just tell the story of Beth Moore with a little jesus thrown in. That just will never cut it. Pam, thanks for your courage. May you be blessed for exposing this incompetence (at best!) and false teaching (at worst).

  18. This is so sad on many different levels. This whole "blogging" thing has such power, doesn't it? Talk about bringing out things in people that should stay private. I am so sorry that you were attacked by so many and that those who did so come across as hypocrites to non-believers. What must they think of us as a whole now? I pray that those who steer away from Beth's studies due to your comments keep searching and find another study to help them to learn. As long as they are in The Word, that is all that matters. And I am sure that Beth would agree to that, she is a genuine person who desires to further Christ's Kingdom.

  19. I only attended one Beth Moore Study. I was disturbed by her misinterpretation of Scripture. No one agreed with me, and I dropped out midway. I am puzzled by her popularity as a Bible teacher.


    A good write up on Beth Moore. Truth is what matters. There are many truth"y" ministries , but is a partial truth really true? Thank you for your blog, I understand why many attack you. Anytime you speak up against doctrine or other teachers there will always be those that think people should be left to there own opinions and truths. Thank you for your Godly approach to your discernment with BM.

    -Dan (just created an AIM account to post this)

  21. Pam, Thanks for stepping out to write your break up with Beth Moore and about your response to that. I was hunting on the internet for someone who maybe felt the same as me about Beth Moore. I have enjoyed her studies and I have led many of them but I have also tried to steer the women of my church away from her a little because of the idol worship that was happening. We just completed a full year of bible study without Beth and I was so happy. My group of women because of that diminished from 120 women to 60 because we weren't doing Beth Moore. I had women actually tell me that they would not do a study unless it was a Beth Moore! It completely broke my heart because they are not following Jesus at all but an ordinary woman named Beth Moore. I am slightly heart broken because my co-leader wants to of course do the new Beth study that came out in the fall. I am trying to find peace in the midst of that and that is why I was seeking out someone else with similar thoughts on the Beth Moore worship going on. Beth has done a lot of good but if we don't try to break up with her a little we will be harvesting some rotten fruit that is worshiping an idol instead of Jesus. For what it is worth, I appreciate you writing what you have. May God bless you and my prayers are for Beth too. I hope she addresses this toxic worship of her soon.
    Your sister in Christ,
    Not trying to promote myself but just so you know, I write a blog too. It just is simply about Christ, not real edited or even close to perfect, nor will it ever be but just what I am learning at the feet of Jesus. For what its worth...

  22. I am a PW, I did not ready your initial post about the BM subject but I would have to say reading your statements on this post. I agree with you. I also separated my self from the BM following YEARS ago before PW life. I felt it was all fluff and I wanted to get into meat and potatoes. The ladies in my church often suggest the latest and greatest BM study...We never seem to get to it ;-) Anyway. I like you style I love that you are from my home state (I know live in MI, but and from WI). I think I will add your blog to my must read list. Like I said I am a fellow PW, I love your honesty!

  23. The thing that bothered me most of the BM devotees is just that: Their devotion seems tied to the phenomenon of personality. I keep my mouth shut. The ladies at my church love it. It's so easy to pop a DVD in and let the DVD player and the curriculum do all the heavy lifting. I don't think most pastors have sat down and gone through one of her studies; and if they would, I hope they wouldn't give her a doctrinal pass simply because she is female. I think, culturally speaking, they'd just as soon leave the little womenfolk alone.

    1. I can't help but wonder if a good portion of pastors are happy they can push off the instruction of women to such a neat and convenient resource. People today relate more to DVD's than person-to-person relationships. They can IMAGINE what it is to be in a real community without actually being too deeply involved. Such is the state of our culture. Realistically, though, God does not work with "one size fits all" methods. Each of us is molded by God as our lives and circumstances need. Some of us are more hardheaded than others, some too much of a soft touch. Frankly, the Lord wants to get each of us to the place where we want to be with HIM more than any other person or group. Yes, He wants us to love one another, but we can't begin to know genuine love before we joyously seek God daily due to the love and trust HE has shown us personally. This is why personal discipleship is so important; not METHODS! While we can learn much from hearing about other women's experiences, the takeaway from them all should be how it has brought them closer to trusting in God and in knowing how to love others. A constant diet of such "teachings" at the expense of your relationship with God and family is a telltale sign that you've devoted yourself to something OTHER than God Himself. We must pray that any who are stuck in the BM culture can get a wider perspective and keep any involvement with her teachings at a level which does not impede our primary responsibilities.

  24. Hello,I came across your blog last night and found it very interesting. I have NEVER been a Beth Moore fan...and it only took one study of hers to make me not want to use her studies. I am a messianic Rebbetzin and I had heard so much about Beth Moore.....ALL AMAZING!! SO, I decided to use her study on Ester.....she is after all big with my people and so I thought, "What a wonderful opportunity!" Sadly the study was so far off theologically....It was very clear to us that she was just coming up with her own opinions and some it seemed sort of fairy tale like. There was no way I could use it and after that had no desire to trust any of her other studies. Now, I'm not saying she is off on all of them but she sure was when it came to the story of one of our leading ladies. I think what kind of concerned me is how I saw Christian woman just eat up EVERYTHING she had to say without question.... As Jews we always question and discuss. Sometimes that can be very hard on a leader but at least we know none of us will be following the blind without a great deal of thought , study and debate. AND we are always willing to change our mind if you can prove your point. We should always be able to challenge, this is how we grow and change. Does not Yeshua (Jesus) challenge us daily?? Did he not challenge his disciples and did THEY not challenge the religious leaders of their day?? Thank Goodness they did! Where would we be had they not?? I am sorry you experienced such back lash from what, I thought, was some very valid points. Not everyone is for everybody..... I am proud of you that you had the courage to speak up and speak your heart. I must confess when I decided that Beth Moore was not for us, there was that part of me that thought.."Should I go into hiding???" Keep strong! Continue to challenge and also grow from being challenged..... You have this Rebbetzins admiration, support and respect!

    Rebbetzin Rivkah Panzetta

  25. I had never heard of your blog prior to this, but I am a pastor's wife (in Wisconsin, from Alabama) and didn't really need to see Beth Moore studies to know that something was off--I saw the way women followed without questioning and knew that it couldn't be good. After researching, I found that I couldn't agree with her theologically (I appreciate the post prior to mine about the lady that tried the Esther study--truth there!). My husband and I decided that our stand would be not to endorse Beth Moore due to theological differences, not personal preferences. While we certainly haven't made it a point to say anything negative about her as a person, when her studies come up, we let the person know that our church doesn't endorse and we tell why. Having said all this, when my sister was going through a particular difficult time in her life (marriage/divorce/etc.) she wrote to Beth Moore about how a book of hers had helped. Beth wrote back a personal letter of encouragement to my sister. Maybe we should follow that example and encourage others, while watching what we're allowing into our churches and homes on a scriptural level? Cruel and combative responses are neither classy nor Biblically-based.

  26. Hang on, Pam, I’m long-winded too! My main response is, “Hang in there, sister!” The church is full of sinners who need healing. Take every opportunity you receive from each person to move them closer to grace as you walk in the stuff Jesus gets from people every day.

    Regarding the original post, as a Wisconsinite, I am just finishing up my first BM study with a group of women from my church. We had a lot of discussion around the message of each study and what we were learning. The last chapters of Breaking Free have helped me find a new strategy for forgiving a hurt from my childhood even though I’ve been walking with Christ for decades and have tried to figure out how to get rid of bitterness on this one issue from my the past. I can't recall any discussion about Beth's personality or mannerisms among us over the last several months. But I can say when I was a younger Christian, or maybe it was just as a younger person, and grappling a lot with gender stereotypes and the limitations that were put on me as female growing up in the sixties, a lot of Beth’s comments about the curlers, etc. would have burned me up.

    As for the reactions from people, I think that people are sensitive to other people’s feelings and reacted in fierceness to the extent that they themselves were sensitive on behalf of BM. If someone was fierce in defending Pam to the point of being hurtful to you, they are probably very early in the process of healing over things in their own lives. I agree it was very wrong to stomp on you over it! They probably need grace from you more than anything and a little more BM studying on grace.

    As for what to write in a blog, what you experienced reminds me of something I learned when I went to a Christian song writer’s conference. There was a huge emphasis on not writing a song that uses the second person pronoun to convict another. They said if someone wants to write a song about a fault in the church, they should write it in first person or third person. I thought of Darlene Zschech’s lyrics: “Sunday morning I say I want revival; Monday morning, I can’t even find my Bible.” It was an example of someone writing about herself as the songwriter’s way of challenging another.

    I think it is also true that comedians are coached that if they want to poke fun, poke it at themselves and not another. Since the art of stand-up comedy is further down the road than the art of blogging, the advice probably came from early comedians who experienced what you did when they did poke fun and maybe there will develop over time similar advice for blog writers. Of course, many comedians do make a big living out of poking fun at others as do bloggers.

    My summary is this: people, Christian or not, are sensitive creatures. Even light poking fun at another is hurtful for some to read, and some express their hurt hurtfully. So, if as a blogger, you want to poke a little for fun, just be ready for anything. Your sense that it was going to come means you know how we humans can overreact when we are hurt. If I were a blogger and wanted to avoid the possibility of stirring up others’ past hurts and in turn getting burned, and yet I wanted to write about someone that was getting under my skin, a useful approach might be to replace my subject’s name with that of my husband’s, pretend someone else wrote it, and keep writing until the result didn’t make me feel defensive for my husband.

    Thanks for reading!

  27. Hi Pam!
    I'm new coming across your blog, but I just wanted to thank you for your original post on Beth Moore. I'm from the East Coast, and by that, I mean NYC. So as much as Beth Moore doesn't go down well in the Midwest, it is LAUGHABLE in Manhattan. We can do the homework and stuff (such as ones from BSF or CBS studies), even amidst jobs such as ibanking, finance, marketing, consulting, etc. But Beth Moore is perhaps... is more fitted for the south, and it gets, quite honestly, obnoxious for us when we have to see the DVD (we eventually stop watching the DVDs, and just went through the scripture).

    I appreciate your honesty and your courage to post on how you felt! It does take a lot of courage, because it is like waging war with the many vocal quilting women who love her... (just saw your blog background).
    I'm sure most southern women think we are terrible women, getting our PhDs, MDs, MBAs, while wearing our stilettos and suits, going to Tim Keller's church, or maybe a local church and trying to serve inner city, not the white picket fences of beautiful southern suburbs (fields?), when the "outreach" that is done is the "canned-food drive" at your kid's school. They probably think we all live like girls in Sex and the City. Btw, we don't.

    I came across your page when I was looking up / googling "Beth Moore in the South" because I met a couple of girls from Kentucky who are obsessed with her, and I've heard of her stuff a long long time ago, but have also written her off a long time ago, so was really surprised that any women, especially young women, would still be following her.

    (Btw, feel free to NOT publish this post, I just wanted to email you personally to tell you thanks. But couldn't figure out how to)

    Best of luck. Power on. Share your thoughts, they are helpful to Some, and those Some matter! :)

  28. :)

    Stumbled upon your blog and I am a fan! As a Southern Baptist pastor's wife I too have been under the thrall of the Beth Moore daze. I've grown in certain areas from some of the studies I've done....let it be known I've pretty much done them all. Been to innumerable conferences, and I even met her once in Chicago while I was at a KidsMin conference.

    I have noticed in the past few years that I have stayed away from any video driven Bible studies for women. I've gravitated more towards general studies because I don't feel like I'm being coddled and wrapped up in the mind numbing "am I right girls!" mentality of the Beth Moore studies.

    I used to be pretty rabid about Beth....seriously it was crazy. Now, I just smile and nod when someone mentions a new study but as the Women's Ministry leader at my church I wont lead our women through another one. I just can't do it.

    Thank you for sharing and confirming my feelings. May our Savior bless you and keep you safe up there in Wisconsin!

  29. I just returned from a Beth Moore Simulcast. I am Roman Catholic and from the east coast. I was invited by some coworkers and was really looking forward to it. What I came away with was a headache from her mania. The jargon was lost on me. The 'camp out here in this scripture' and the bless your hearts and girlfriends did nothing for me. I did not get anything from it, just an overall irritation. I had heard such wonderful things about her studies to say I was disappointed was an understatement. I appreciate your breakup as I never could get a relationship started! Can I get an amen.

  30. My group has been quite successful with Beth Moore studies (We love Priscilla Shirer too), but we have had to work around the "suggested" programs - those don't work for us even here in our southern area. We do our prayer time and video one week - then the next week do our prayer time and discussion. That allows the participants a full 2 weeks to do the homework. Most of our group gets it all done - though we always allow lots of grace for life challenges.

    I have been in groups that did the "suggested" one lesson a week. They were very difficult. Most people did very little of the workbooks (if any at all). The prayer times were 20 min. of "requests" and 2 minutes of prayer. The discussion was about 10 minutes of nothing useful. I would leave BM too if I had to endure that type of study.

    We have found the discussion critical to our group really being able to get to the meat of the study. And we don't always agree with the presented teaching. It forces us to evaluate what we believe and why we believe it. Then again, we have had much light shed on difficult portions of Scripture and had it come alive in ways we had never seen before. We foster an atmosphere that allows questions and room for differences of opinion. In fact we represent a multicultural group - at least 4 different countries are represented, and even more denominations - in just our little group of less than 20 people. Our ages span from teens to elderly. We are a close group, respectful of our differences, but extremely close in our love of God.

    We do co-teaching with 2 group leaders. So with a schedule that does alternating DVD and discussion no one leader ever has to do deep preparation more that once every 4 weeks. The leader prep is key to guiding our members into more than a surface study that just accepts every thing fed to us. And we have plenty of time for real prayer. Our group has seen many answers to prayer so it is always a priority. We meet for 2 hours. Usually half the time is for prayer requests and prayer (it is never a gossip fest - we do lots of actual praying), and half the time for the lesson - DVD or discussion - depending on the week.

    Just some ideas - take the tools (whatever ones you decide to use) and adapt them to fit the people you minister to - don't try to squash everyone into the same box. I am glad God isn't in a box!

  31. All of the homework can make me feel "less-than", but I'm very sensitive that way. It requires a huge commitment. I have done studies by others (Experiencing God) that are similar. God bless you; your heart shines through your posts. <3