Sunday, November 10, 2013

Don't Kill With Your Words

"If you can't say anything nice, don't say anything at all."

I grew up hearing this, soaking it in, and applying it to my own life.  Being the nurturing, tenderhearted peacekeeper that I am, it made perfect sense.  Why waste your breath saying something negative, especially if it will cause conflict or hurt feelings?  We're called by God to build people up, not tear them down. 

They say that sticks and stones may break your bones but words will never hurt you.  The Bible says otherwise:

Job 19:2 “How long will you torment me and break me in pieces with words?"

Psalm 64:3 "...Who whet their tongues like swords, who aim bitter words like arrows..."

Proverbs 10:19 "When words are many, transgression is not lacking, but whoever restrains his lips is prudent."

Proverbs 12:18 "There is one whose rash words are like sword thrusts, but the tongue of the wise brings healing."

Imagine forming a hurtful comment in your mind.  I'll give you time to come up with something.

Got it?  

Now consider this...
Would you say that hurtful comment to God?  
How do you think it would make Him feel?  
Would you regret saying it?  
Proverbs 17:27 "Whoever restrains his words has knowledge, and he who has a cool spirit is a man of understanding."

When we neglect to hold our tongue for people when we should, we neglect to hold it for Jesus, as well.  
"Then he will answer them, saying, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to me.'"  Matthew 25:45

My paraphrase of Jesus's words:
"The way you treat other people is the way you treat me."

I hope to instill this in my future children.  Speaking unkind words to others shows a lack of spiritual maturity, respect for your fellow brothers and sisters, and love for the Savior.  It is a non-reflection of Christ's love and character, and is a bad example to set for the watching world.

I've been torn down a good deal recently and I've felt the pain of more unkind words in the past five years than I have in my whole life combined.  The rest of what I have to say is directed at the people who have played a part in tearing me down with their words.  Your words don't just hurt me.  They hurt God and my husband, too.  I don't care what kind of grievances you have against me.  Your unkind words are uncalled for and unwelcome.  If you would rather choose to continue with your disrespect toward me, know that Daniel and I would rather choose to discontinue our communications with you.  We have no room in our lives for people who choose to tear us down.


Anonymous said...

You say do not hurt people with your words,yet you have been doing just that by using your words and emotions to control and abuse your husband. Please stop only viewing yourself as a victim and see how you are treating others as well.

Anonymous said...

Exactly how has Rachel been using her words and emotions to control and abuse her husband?

Captain Obvious stating the obvious said...

Hmm, perhaps forcing him to move to a different state and forcing him to share her opinions on consumption of alcohol are a good start. Perhaps we could also include the statement, "You don't love me if you don't want to move to Tennessee."

Anonymous said...

her husband is his own man and he was not "forced" to move to a different state. there were much more objective reasons for their move than you seem to have any knowledge of. her opinions on the consumption of alcohol are valid. I don't see how any of the above could be considered "abuse" as you call it.

Hans Leidenfrost said...

Anonymous (1st post), regardless of the falsehood or truth of your claim, it is never acceptable to accuse another anonymously. An accusation of this magnitude should come privately in love from a good friend, family, or the pastor of a church. If your brother refuses to listen, bring along another and approach the person in the wrong. If they still don't listen and it is serious, bring it to the church. The Biblical approach here is first private, with love and concern for your brother, and then judicial, when the matter is brought to the church. Internet accusations are neither private, personal, loving, or judicial.

Faithful are the wounds of a friend. If I rebuke someone, I should love them so much with Christ's love that I would be willing to follow them to hell to pull them out, and lay down my life if necessary.

The most powerful and loving rebukes I have had have come from humble and loyal people who I know very well. Sometimes the rebukes were incorrect, sometimes they were dead on and it stung me to repent an apologize, but I valued the love of the person who approached me.

I don't know who you are but Rachel and Danny are family. Please do not post comments like this on the internet.

In Christ,
Hans Leidenfrost

Michael Smith said...

956I think you people are cowards to hide your name and criticize justification for Rachel and Daniel to move to Tennessee. With friends like you two they don't need enemies. How are you knowledgeable of what goes on between a husband and wife? It is none of your business. You two are such immature children who probably spend all their time playing video games. You leave Rachel alone and keep you snotty noses our of her business and life. I don't think she hired you two to be her counselor. This is juvenile gossip and minding other peoples business. They made a conscience prayerful decision to move, get used to it. You are not their parents or their responsibility.

Michael Smith said...

Rachel, Daniel you are responsible to each other not your friends. They did not stand at the altar and exchange their vows, you two did. The most important thing in your life right now is each other. You must ignore the selfish intents of so called friends who attack one of you to split your loyalty to each other. You made a tough decision to move. Daniel I know you did not want to leave but you thought of your wife's happiness and well being and made the decision. I am proud of you. It took a real man to make that decision. Make the best of it and your happiness together will well worth the sacrifice you made.

Anonymous said...

Hans you made a good point, thank you.
I'm sorry for posting that publicly and will avoid that in the future.

Anonymous said...

Rachel, please know that I have prayed and taken a long time to think and consider this before commenting. Please also know that there is zero malice or antagonism to be found in my motives for posting this. I sincerely wish to convey my subjective observations of this blog through an objective Biblical lens.

All that being said...

Judging solely from what you write here on this blog, I have to say that you are one of the most self-centered individuals I have ever encountered on the internet. Your writing is a tour-de-force of blame shifting, navel-gazing and dangerous pride. It amazes me at how often you claim to have concrete knowledge of the Almighty's plan for your life, as though the secrets of the Creator were yours to decipher and to know. I sincerely fear for you, as it seems that there is a blindness to fault within yourself. I have noticed consistent patterns of blaming only outside forces for your unhappiness, and not taking any responsibility for your own choices that brought you to those circumstances.

It also seems that you use this blog as a public forum to passive-aggressively air your grievances with, among other parties, your husband. I am worried that for him because you show tendencies towards blatant emotional manipulation and you have repeatedly claimed that God's will is known to you and not him. This is very disturbing, especially as your history of being involved with multiple organizations where this practice was the norm for leadership (claiming knowledge of divine will as basis for leadership/decision making).

I applaud your bravery at sharing these stories and escaping the spiritual abuse of those organizations, and I beg you to examine your own actions and to break the cycle of abuse and manipulation before you hurt the man has joined his life with yours. You don't have to be like those people who hurt you, Rachel. I pray for your heart every day that it may be opened and that you may be blessed with the sweet fruits of Humility and Loving-Kindness.

Please know that I am not writing any of this to engage you in an argument or to be hurtful. I have been carrying this burden for some time and, after much prayer, felt it was necessary to share, even if I can't be brave enough to add my name. Thank you and please be open to these observations and to the love for you with which they are penned.

Josh said...

Dear Rachel,

I can see how some of the things that my friends (1st Anonymous and Cpt. Obvious) and I have shared with Daniel could come across as hurtful to you. But I would ask you to consider our vantage point as to what motivated us. As friends who have known Daniel for a very long time, we have seen him down and frustrated before. But in seeing him the other week and in checking in with friends who see him more often than I, he appears crushed and miserable as we've never seen him before. I ask you, Rachel, if you were in our shoes, how would you respond if you saw a friend who was pushing himself to his extremes to appease his spouse, all the while being afraid to express himself to her because he was afraid of her reactions? It would be inappropriate for me to post in a public forum what Daniel has said he's been through (though since it's already been mentioned, accusing him of not loving you just because he held a different opinion is extremely worrisome), but I felt hurt on his behalf--and the pain was highly palpable in his voice and demeanor--to hear what he is going through. Daniel has wonderful qualities like his care, compassion, and generosity and, as someone who has long been a grateful recipient of his gifts, I would hate to see them being taken advantage of.

Rachel, none of us set out with any malicious feelings towards you. We were happy that Daniel found a partner with whom he seemed happy. I think all of us feel like we tried to get to know you without feeling like you took any interest in our lives. But as we've seen Daniel's happiness turn to despair, as we've seen you take jabs at him on your public blog, and as we've heard what he is going through, we, as people who care about our longtime friend Daniel, have grown increasingly concerned. So we shared that concern with him not to intentionally give YOU a hard time or anything, but because we hate seeing him like this. If I was in a similar position, I would hope my friends would be willing to share their concerns with me and my significant other even if it was difficult to hear. That is my definition of a good friend. On the night we were together with Daniel, I would have felt guilty to have heard what he said and NOT shared my concern.

I know my friends who have posted anonymously on here feel that no matter what we say you will twist it into a personal attack and do not want to risk their friendship with Daniel over it. I implore you to consider where we are coming from and not try to use what we have said as fuel to persuade Daniel to end his friendship with me or any of his other friends. I would hate to lose our friendship over this. Daniel has my phone number if you would like to talk about this more.


Brian said...

I respect the theme of this blog post, Rachel.

The power of words should never be understated. They can be as sharp as any blade and be just as hurtful.

However, what I cannot agree with is that you are misleading your readers into thinking you are personally being attacked. It is disheartening to see that you are shying away from honest criticism that was given to your husband from those who know and care deeply for him. He has been a very good friend to me, and I could not consider myself a friend of his if I did not give him honest council when he asked for it.

It is unfair of you to falsely label our genuine concern for our friend as slander. And threatening to sever communication with those because you don’t like what we have to say is wrong.

You are avoiding accountability by trying to damage those who gave honest feedback to your husband when he asked for it. You call it disrespect; I call it being a friend. Despite your misleading points in your blog, our words with DP were to help him make your marriage stronger. We want only the best for Daniel and for you as well now that you are his wife.

These steps that you have taken seem to indicate a quick reaction to attack heartfelt criticism instead of looking to where there are areas in your life and relationship which may need to be examined.


MIchael Smith said...

Anonymous you claim to be a Christian? Where did you receive your Christian upbringing and education? You display in your three posts to this blog the opposite of Christianity. In fact your rants are more of Satanic influence than something the Holy Spirit would inspire. How dare you attack her for taking away your friend. Are you jealous? What business is it of yours to stick your nose into her life? They are a married couple now. They don't need your petty advice anymore. You have no right or need to worry about him any more, You are not his keeper. He has made the decision to marry and cleave to his wife. Not you. If you are that jealous then you should have married him. Who are you to profess a psychological evaluation on her or their marriage? Are you a clinical psychologist? If not you are practicing psychology without a license. So my advice to you is get lost. You appear to be more psychologically unstable than the person you are trying to criticize. You end your rant with a bold face lie. " Please know that I am not writing any of this to engage you in an argument or to be hurtful."

Not trying to be hurtful? Please do not pray for her any longer. Your prayers do not go to the same God she loves and worships. Keep them to yourself. This response to you is intended to chastise you and be as direct and to the point as I can get. If you take it as insulting and hurtful, then that is what I intended. I do not care. Rachel is one of the most beautiful and loving persons I have ever known. I've known her since the day she was born and I will not have you attack her for a fit of jealousy. If you object to her blog then by all means quit reading it. That will make you feel better. Now my advice to you is back off and leave her alone. You have a gripe keep it to yourself. You are the self centered egoist child who is having a temper tantrum because your toy was taken away. If I see any subsequent posts from you on this blog, please be advised that I will spare no words to call you out and I can dish it out. Leave them along and worry about your own psychological and spiritual problems.

Josh I will offer you the same advice except in a more friendly manner. I understand how you feel about your friend's well being. But he is no longer one of the boys. He is a married man and his primary responsibility is his wife not you and the guys. It sounds like all of you have been going out of your way to advise him not to move away. Isn't that selfish? Did he promise to stay with you guys the rest of his life? No he did not. He promised to share his life with his wife. Are you trying to place a wedge between Daniel and Rachel? That's what it looks like to me. Do you remember what your minister said at the conclusion of their wedding? "...LET NO MAN PUT ASSUNDER." All of you need to pay particular to that biblical teaching.

Close to the heart of the lamb said...

For all of you who claim that Rachel has not been victimized, please know that the trigger for this blog post was a comment on Rachel and Daniel's wedding page (which has since been removed) that was posted anonymously and said that the day of their wedding was the worst day ever. Not the worst wedding ever or anything like that, but the worst day. Now, if that had been any of you, would you have NOT taken that as a personal attack? The cowardice in posting anonymously and the malice intended toward Rachel seem quite clear to me.

While Daniel has had a long time set of friends to hear his struggles and pain, Rachel has not had such a support system available to her. Her pain has been disregarded and dismissed as though she alone were the sole source for the suffering of them both. How must Rachel feel to be pained and yet with little in the way of care to soothe her? And whenever she tries to give voice to her hurts, her struggles, and her pain she is beaten up one side and down the other by people who really don't know all the details.

Dan Mori said...


I feel the need to add my voice to Josh and Brian's. I consider Daniel Payne to be a dear friend, and I wish you could have been in the room for our discussion, which was not slanderous and only offered direct observations on Daniel's life as seen from our perspective as his close friends.

In particular, I feel a personal burden to bring my observations to your husband because he so faithfully brought similar observations and concerns to me throughout our friendship. I have an admittedly checkered past when it comes to relationships, not always choosing the healthiest or safest company to keep. Daniel has never shied away from pointing out when my behavior or the behavior of those I spent time with concerned him, and his counsel has saved me on many occasions from situations which would be hazardous to my health, my happiness or to my physical, mental and spiritual well-being.

I owe Daniel the same honesty and sincerity in offering a judgment-free ear and unfiltered advice based on my personal history of experiences and interactions with him. We have not set out to slander you or attack your marriage... our only goal or agenda is to support Daniel. It seems to me that the themes of avoiding responsibility and shutting down communication in the face of disagreement are red flags for the health of a relationship... flags which Daniel has been honest and direct in pointing out in my life, and which I now must point out to him in his.

I am not a frequent reader of this blog, but browsing through your post history and this comment thread I am filled with concern for both Daniel and for your marriage. I would humbly request that you examine the way you have been reacting not just to this situation, but to any conflict or obstacle in your marriage thus far. There is nothing but love in our hearts for you and your husband, and we want your marriage to be long, happy and fulfilling in every possible way. However, we will not stand idly by and allow any person to manipulate our friend via public passive-aggressive posts or by taking him emotionally hostage in private. This is behavior which can not and will not go un-confronted.

I wish nothing but the best for you and Daniel, and I add my voice of concern and love to the voices of Brian and Josh. We are Daniel's friends, and we are here to support him with unconditional honesty and love.


Daniel Mori

Michael Smith said...

Daniel, I appreciate your concern for your friend. However he has chosen to take a wife and begin a new life as her husband. Your friendship I'm sure is valued. However you have no right or responsibility to interfere in their marriage. NONE! Daniel had to make a tough decision. He asked for your advice. Did you ever consider what was in the best interest for both of them or just Daniel? I think I can answer that based on the gang attack we have witnessed against his wife. As difficult as it was for him he chose to please his wife and relocate to Tennessee. That took courage and you should be proud as I am that he decided that it was in her best interest not his. That took courage. Why do you berate him for that? You need to accept that decision and support both of them. That is what true friends do, not take sides and make his wife feel like she is destroying his life. If you want their marriage to be long and happy you will let them live their own lives as they see fit. Otherwise it will be miserable and short. Is that what you want? Do you want to break them up? Daniel is a man now not a bud who has no responsibility but getting together and hanging out and sipping a few suds. He has assumed the responsibility of a wife and head of his family. Let him do that without anguish and turmoil from you and your friends.

Close to the heart of the lamb said...

To Daniel Mori,

I appreciate the fact that your group of friends feels a need to rally around Daniel Payne, however, in doing so, you are rallying AGAINST his wife and therefore against him as well since the two have become one flesh. Your final comment truly sums this up when you say, "We are DANIEL'S friends, and we are here to support HIM with unconditional honesty and love. " In this you offer no support for Rachel, only condemnation.

You say that you wish Rachel could have been there to hear the discussion. Did you stop to think that Daniel should be pouring out his heart to his wife, not his buddies? Did you enlighten Rachel to the things Daniel shared with you so she could seek to comfort and soothe her husband? You claim that her posts are passive-aggressive outbursts against her husband when many of her posts are not in regard to HIM at all!! Particularly this one!

Rachel is a young wife and Daniel is a young husband. They are still learning how to communicate with each other. As a wife of almost 30 years, I can tell you that a LOT of mistakes are made early in marriage. It takes time and effort to learn the ways your spouse communicates his/her struggles. Painful things are said and done on both sides as the learning process unfolds. No one goes into marriage as an expert and yet that expectation is there all the same.

You all rally around Daniel to soothe and comfort him and to hear his side, but have you taken the time to do the same for Rachel? Have you been there with unconditional love and support for her as well? Have you listened to her pain, her struggles? As much as I love Daniel, he is not perfect either. He has made mistakes not unlike Rachel has made mistakes. They are both human, fallible, sinful beings. You need to remember that there are THREE sides to every situation. His side, her side, and the truth of the matter. The truth is that we can generally only view life from our particular lense. It takes a lot of time, maturity, and wisdom to be able to view things from the perspective of another. You do not seem to be willing to view these things from Rachel's perspective. You rally around Daniel as though she is the enemy and subtly convey as much to Daniel in so doing.

The bottom line is that the best thing you can do for your friend Daniel is to step back and allow them to deal with this on their own. They are husband and wife and they need to be pouring their hearts and souls out to each other. They need to be figuring out how to reconcile their differences with each other. If they cannot do that then they should go to someone who is an OBJECTIVE third-party for help. You and your friends are no more objective in this matter than the sky is purple. Neither Rachel nor Daniel should be feeling ganged up on or abandoned, but it is just not your place to insert yourselves in this matter. And the fact of the matter remains that you all are a gang of guys and can offer him ZERO insight on how a woman processes things and what she desires as a response from her husband. Unless you are able to treat Rachel with the exact same support, acceptance, and lovingkindness with which you treat Daniel, you are not only treating his wife inappropriately, but you are also injuring your friend.

Rachel said...

Josh, Brian, Dan,
The previous commenter is right. You should have enlightened me about the conversation. I felt completely helpless to help Daniel because I had no idea what was going on. You should've encouraged him to come to me, as he should be doing, rather than trying to offer him advice on your own. You are not encouraging him to understand his wife, which requires communication with HER. I'm concerned with how you are influencing him, as I see no spiritual fruit or growth coming from him that would be beneficial to our marriage as a result of his friendship with you.

Anonymous, you have quite a long list of negative characteristics you've observed online about me. Maybe this is due to the fact that you've never observed me in person?

Rachel said...

I'm curious, boys...why is that even when I did not mention any names or specify the triggering phrase that you all assumed I meant you were the guilty party? Do you all really think that poorly of me and my opinion of you? Or is there actual guilt on your parts?

I was, in fact, as Close to the heart of the lamb said, responding to very hurtful anonymous comment about our wedding day, but I did NOT assume any of you were responsible. I left it up to Daniel to determine who should be dealt with. My post above was merely a warning to the guilty party...whoever he or she is, in case they happened to read my blog. But I am not going to and did not presume to know who they were. I simply do not want hurtful comments like "worst day ever" to be made ever again.

I do not wish to "argue" about this further. Please contact Daniel or I personally if you have anything else to discuss with us. We would prefer to hear from people with names, not people hiding behind masks on the internet.

This blog comment section is now closed.

Daniel Payne said...

Definitely have no intention of reopening this, but thought it best to address this, despite that the comments in the blog itself are now closed. (Honestly wish the whole post was just nuked and gone completely by now.)

I apologize for being late to the party. I did not intend to ignore the conflicts going on, but I was so distraught simply from reading the post and the first 5 or so comments that I have not had the emotional energy required to respond for days, beyond the request that everyone stop arguing about my life on the Internet (which was brief as it was partly because I was busy applying to jobs). I also thought it best to pray how I can respond in a helpful way, instead of fanning more flames of contention, and give perhaps a proper response.

Anyone who wants a fuller explanation, you can call me any time. (Indeed, I plan on talking directly to many people who were a part of this "discussion.") For now, I just want to address the main parties briefly.

> To my friends who have posted both anonymously and by name: I have 2 main statements that I want to make—appreciative and corrective, respectively. Please do not take anything written here as a callous rebuke or a response made in anger.

I am blessed to have friends who care about me and who want to “have my back,” as it were, and that so many of you expressed appreciation for my friendship and concern about the trials that I am going through. For that, you have my sincere thanks and appreciation.

I also know that some of the statements made, particularly by “anonymous” parties, were expressed out of a position of genuine hurt, which occurred as a result of Rachel’s and my struggles. I want to acknowledge that your pains are real, and it brings me great anguish that a rift exists between Rachel & I and each of you. I pray that, over time, God will work in us all and grant us solace, healing, and renewed fellowship where relationships have been trampled upon or devalued.

At the same time, while this blog appeared to be addressed to a nonspecific group of you, it was really posted, as Rachel said, in response to a deeply hurtful statement about our wedding day on our registry site—a comment that filled me with immense rage. I share the sentiment she expressed that we do not even want to talk to people who say things like that, whoever they are, if that is their pervasive attitude.

It also wounds me that statements were made public that I had confided to you privately. In fact, I cried upon reading these comments and was unable to read further or reply for days. Hans was completely right—this is not the way scripture would have us address the grievances or perceived wrongs of a Christian brother or sister… Even if many critical or seemingly critical statements about me were already public, I urge you to refrain from making matters worse in bringing up accusations or debating the problems publicly. Not only does this create problems for Rachel and I, but it is not even an effective way to win her over. In fact, it will only tempt her more to use this public spectacle a rationalization to exclude others and their thoughts from our lives.

I would add my voice to those who pointed out that there have been so many statements affirming support for ME, but not for US, nor for Rachel individually. Again, I am honored to have friends staunchly seek to build me up. At the same time, it is true that supporting me separately from Rachel is not really the kind of support I need. It creates a wedge between my wife and I, and even when this is unintentional it hurts me a great deal. In fact, whenever people I care about do not express acceptance of Rachel, it causes me turmoil and greatly tempts me to deep depression. Rachel and I are one, and if anyone is to truly love and support me, they will have to care about and care for my wife.

Daniel Payne said...

> This brings me to my second statement, which is pretty much to everyone involved as a way to clarify some things. Those who have stated that accusations should not be brought against my wife on the Internet are right, and I have addressed that. These statements are not, however, the irritating whinings of children who have lost a toy that they thought belonged to them. Rather, these are the observations of people who know me well and who are genuinely concerned for Rachel’s and my welfare. It is sad that they felt they had little recourse but to make a challenge here in order to bring forward their thoughts. And if Rachel had a proper support system, I guess that it could be used to bring forward these concerns in the best way. Instead, she shares her thoughts on her blog, and right now it’s one of her only venues to do so. Her struggles are real, and I desperately wish she had friends she would trust with her inner thoughts and feel supported.

But let’s be real here: this is no one in particular’s fault. I recall that in the early stages of my relationship with Rachel, there were friends who did not get along well with her. Still, there are plenty of examples of friends who have cared for Rachel and I in incredible ways. Rachel is also a quiet girl who prefers to express herself through writing and not direct interaction (which I myself also often prefer). It’s not easy for her to make new friends or even express her thoughts clearly to people she knows. But she has also isolated herself to a large degree—which I have spoken to her about and she has admitted to. So if she is to have a loving support group, it will take more than changes in circumstance. (That is all I will say here on this matter; I am not about to publicly criticize my wife, or even appear to do so.)

To further clarify, when my friends spoke to me, they did not express selfish motives for keeping me in Maryland so they would have a buddy to hang out with. In Dan’s case, I see him maybe 2 or 3 times a year, as he is so busy with his theatre work, and Josh doesn’t even live in MD. Instead, they and others present expressed concerns about how the decision to move was being made. They were not attempting to subvert me from going to Rachel with my thoughts; rather, the best advice I was given that night was to in fact open up to Rachel about what I thought and felt, even though I was hesitant at the time. Some time afterwards, I did exactly that. So, many of the accusations against my friends that were brought up can all be dropped entirely.

Daniel Payne said...

> Thirdly, to Rachel’s family members represented here: Thank you to those of you who expressed approval for my decision. It certainly wasn’t an easy one for me, and I appreciate the praise you gave me. I’m also glad that you seek to defend Rachel and that you love her so much. She is a gem, one I am glad is in my life.

However, I’d like to challenge you to desist in berating my friends for their behavior. Yes, such things should not be commented on publicly or anonymously, whatever the intentions. But accusing them of not understanding the situation and then lambasting them with many derogatory walls of text is not necessary or truly helpful. What they DO know, they know because I confided in them. That is what friends often do, and there are plenty of facts that one party here knows that the other does not, and vice versa. There really is no high ground to be sought from which we can look down upon each other here. I would even argue that some of your own statements about not judging others applies also to you (Romans 2:1).

Furthermore, I truly was unimpressed by the mockery made of them and the dismissal of their perspectives and their attempts to support me, and I really do not appreciate at all the mocking comment about their being the “Three Muskateers.”

All this posted in reply to an article Rachel wrote about speaking kindly and loving others… I’m not sure how those two things are supposed to go together.

In short, they are not agents of Satan or any of the other things that have been said about them. They were wrong to approach the problem the way they did, and they do not know all the facts, but neither does anyone. Most of the comments made were made out of genuine concern.

> To speak directly to my wife: Darling, I’m sorry for the hurt you’ve been going through and the pains that resulted from the comments to your posts. I’m praying for us, that God will help us work through everything together. I hope that you will consider the things that have been brought up, even though the method was off. Particularly, I don’t want you to struggle alone. Remember, we promised to each other we wouldn’t do that?

I thank God you are my wife, even though life if hard right now. I love you.

Daniel Payne said...

> A final statement to everyone:
Many opinions and perspectives have been given on what kind of friends I should have or what their role should be in my life. Let it be clear that I will befriend and remain friends with whomever I please, and friends often share their struggles with one another as a way to seek support. I acknowledge I will have to do so prudently from now on and never should these relationships usurp my most important relationship with Rachel, but no one but God himself will convince me to cut off people from my life. That is my decision to make, and any advice given that I should drop someone out of my life will be promptly discarded.