About Me

In the words of Christian author Philip Yancey, I am a reluctant Christian, buffeted by doubts, and in recovery from disappointing church experiences. I don’t mean for that to sound cynical or pessimistic (only honest), because I DO BELIEVE and I LOVE JESUS more than I ever have! I have been so set free in my Christian walk in the last few years…set free by a proper understanding of the relationship between faith and doubt, set free by grace, and set free from legalism. (But I’m still a work in progress!)

“Though you have not seen Him (Jesus), you love Him; and even though you do not see Him now, you believe in Him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy…” I Peter 1:8.

“And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to Him must believe that He exists and that He rewards those who earnestly seek Him.” Hebrews 11:6

“From the fullness of His grace we have all received one blessing after another.  For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.” John 1:16-17

*A little more about me…I’m Laura. Married to Bob for 24 years. A follower of the Lord Jesus Christ. A saint and sinner. Avid reader. Lifelong learner. Currently a seminary student.* Formerly a nurse. Companion to beloved cats, rabbit, and a Newfoundland dog. World wide traveler. Host of international students since 1997.

*With all the below comments (thanks everyone), I didn’t want to change my self description – but here is an update: As of May 2013, I am a seminary graduate!

24 thoughts on “About Me”

  1. thanks laura, i look forward to reading these posts. i do not study and read as often as i should, and i appreciate the time you spend sharing and your opinions. i also have had some dissappointments in the “church” experience but have not been let down by my Jesus. As i draw close to Him, He draws close to me. thanks you for sharing your growth & knowledge. judy

  2. I too have been set free from legalism, which is the cause of most of the hurts in churches. It was because of this that I started to write a blog. I wanted people to learn the truth and to encourage them to study the Bible for themselves. I am glad I found your blog. It is inspiring.

  3. Thanks for the comment on my post, looks like we have or have had some similar questions/doubts. I enjoyed looking through your blog.

  4. jimhabegger said:

    Laura, I stumbled on your pages while I was searching for support groups for people who feel unwelcome in their faith communities. I just want you to know that it’s a comfort to me to see what you’re doing.

  5. Lisa Robinson said:

    Hi Laura,
    Thanks for linking to my Parchment and Pen article on a low view of Scripture. I appreciate your thoughtful approach to how we should consider divine communication and your interaction with Deere. I see you are in seminary. Which one? I am a seminary student also (ThM at DTS) and I have been intrigued by this topic, especially since I spent many years in the Charismatic camp. But six years ago went through a paradigm shift because of the very factors you mentioned in your God Speaking series. In fact, I am working on a short book designed to address these very issues especially for those who rely on an experiential methodology.

    • Hi Lisa! I enjoy your writing, and also linked to another article you wrote called “Why I think women need to study theology” back in a post from Oct 2011 where I relate to your sentiments about women and women’s ministry. I’m actually a DTS student as well (MABS) but at an extension site location. I’d be very interested in your short book on the issue of how we hear from God! Hope it will help others see, among other things, the important role of Scripture. Recently I saw a reference to James Montgomery Boice and how he said that the real battle of our times would not be inerrancy or infallibility of Scripture, but its sufficiency – are we going to rely on the Bible or will we continually long for other revelation?

  6. Didn’t see any contact info. If you would be interested in reviewing Love, Prayer, and Forgiveness: When Basics Become Heresies, I would be glad to send you the pdf [book is about 120 pp.]

  7. That’s a great Philip Yancey quote. He expresses so well the way many of us feel who’ve been hurt or disillusioned by other Christians, yet still want to stick with our faith and hope for better things in the Church’s future. I look forward to reading more of your posts!

    By the way, if you have a FB page or Twitter account, I’d love to follow you there. 🙂

    • Thanks for the comment. I checked out your blog and relate to your self-description: “I’m an evangelical pastor’s kid–turned church critic–turned advocate for thoughtful, intentional, compassionate faith.” Seems we have some past things/struggles in common. I found your page on facebook and “liked” it.

  8. God bless you, Laura.

  9. LLM ~ I’m so glad you found my post and that you commented AND re-blogged it on your blog! Not just because it’s encouraging to know that something I wrote was appreciated and struck a chord, but also because it brought me here to your blog! Your “About Me” section has been very encouraging to me. My husband is “in recovery from some very disappointing church experiences” as well. His experience has been extremely painful and he is now in that tender spot of disallusionment with the church and hesitant to trust and put himself out there again. He/we are attending a new church ~ which we like so far ~ but are very guarded (he more than me, but I’m guarded out of respect to him). As a pastor’s daughter (who was/is very loyal to her father and wants to think the best of the church and who use to consider anyone who left the church as “bad people”), this has been such a stretching and growing experience. Long story short, I have grown more than ever in my relationship with God these past couple of years by going through this painful experience and discovering that God has so much more for me than I ever imagined. My journey of faith has been incredible and life-changing for me. You’ve mentioned Philip Yancey a few times…I have “discovered” him through this experience and resonate with so much of his writing. Soul Survivor: How My Faith Survived the Church (which I got FOR my husband, but ended up realizing it was really for ME) was such an encouraging book for me. All of that to say, thanks for reading and re-blogging my post…and I look forward to reading more of your posts on your blog!

    • Hi Kimberly! Thanks for sharing! I have some similar background. My dad was an itinerant Bible teacher. Years ago I would have been VERY judgmental towards those who left the church or were disillusioned with it. Oh, how time and circumstances can change things. Experiences of the last several years have left me very disillusioned with the church, and I have a whole new sympathy and understanding towards those who have left her. I’d also describe myself as “guarded” in regards to church- when I have taken a few steps forward, it seems I end up taking a few steps back. But Jesus is my anchor. My heart aches for all those hurt by the church. I’ve grown in all this too, and Yancey’s writings have been so helpful. It is great you have been there for your husband. All those hurt by the church need someone to come along side them to offer patient support and encouragement. Churches need to be more aware and sensitive to this…

  10. “…in recovery from deeply disappointing church experiences…” There are too many like that, Laura.

    For many years I was very disgruntled with local church life, and with good cause. The odd thing was I saw a problem everywhere and in many believers, but I didn’t see the big problem that was in me. I was off the track altogether.

    Beyond that, I eventually took the time to listen to God’s Word and that kicked me into balance. Then I wrote that balance back out from deep within to give it all focus for me personally in Christ. Now I’m very cautiously attending a local church I quite like, though I’m nervous of participation for various reasons!

    So, I’m looking forward to having a read around here. Looks good.

  11. Cecil Cheves said:

    Anyone who has been a part of a local church, whether as an attender, a preacher’s kid, a teacher, or a financial supporter, has experienced disappointment in the church. People will let down other people. Another person’s actions or beliefs will eventually surface and when measured against the perfect standard of God’s love and Word will fall short and lead other to fall away because of the disappointment. What doesn’t change, though, is the truth of God and the truth of our need for redemption. So we continue to seek God’s face. We find His love and His care for us despite our foibles and frailties to be comforting during our earthly journey. May we all continue to finish strong.

  12. Thanks for following my blog on spiritual practice, faith, and life – I’m glad to discover your blog too and will follow you as well. Keep on blogging!

  13. I hope and pray that through your walk with The Lord that you will find more clarity and a greater intimacy. God bless you.

    ~Your neighbor 😊

  14. Woo-hoo on being a grad! In fact, I’ll say conGRADulations! Now that you’re all smartified, I’m expecting this excellent blog to go to even greater heights. No pressure.

    Tim

    • Thanks Tim! haha about the pressure! While I have learned a great deal in my several years of studies and in a certain way feel quite knowledgeable, my studies have also paradoxically made me realize how LITTLE I actually know! I have a masters but have I really mastered the Scriptures? No, I think not. It seems impossible to fully mine the depths of them, and all that has been written about them and our great God throughout church history. What I hope more is that the Scriptures will master me. Thanks for following my blog Tim.

  15. Hi Laura, I too can connect with you, having had some disappointing and shocking experiences of church, (in my very short time as Christian) both in so called “Christian” behaviour and lack of love mixed with jealousy and judgementalism, and then the legalism and religiosity. Isn’t church about Jesus? Isn’t about love, acceptance and accountability? I look forward to reading more of your thoughts in due course. Bless you.

  16. Thanks for following me! I followed you back – you have a great blog! I’m looking forward to interacting with a fellow bookworm and lover of theology 🙂

    • Thanks Jennifer. I saw you won the book from Baker Academic (at least I think it was from them). And was interested to see that a female won it, and followed over to your blog. Yes, I always appreciate finding other bookworms and theology lovers! : )

      • Yes, I did just win a book from Baker Academic! I resonate with your experience of being surprised/interested by another female on an academic site, haha. I recently participated in a blog tour for Zondervan Academic, and I was really surprised that out of 24 bloggers chosen there was only one other woman besides me. Have you blogged about this subject? If not, you should 🙂

  17. Ooh! I’m so glad Laura Droege posted about your book today. I have just bought the Kindle version. It sounds like just what I need to move on in my journey of recovery. God is good.

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