Redemptive Narratives Around Suffering Are About Their Comfort, Not Your Pain

Jun 11, 2021

I like to say that through all this COVID pandemic has really been a time of personal growth for me. My belly grew out two inches! It is always easy to find silver linings in other people’s clouds and Christianity normalizes this by positing the redemptive suffering narrative. But in reality this narrative is about making the person who suffers less, (who almost always holds more power) comfortable. Senseless suffering and chaos (which is given in disability in heaping measures) is attacking Christianity precisely where it offers its weakest defense. Those with disabilities inside the faith have to choose between playing down their experience and putting a redemptive spin on it to satisfy the their peers or tell their story unabridged and risk ostracism from the group.

This is why you almost never see authentic disability voices in Evangelical Christian circles. Instead you see token individuals with disabilities toeing the line romanticizing suffering and painting over the ugly parts of disability. Then you have people in power talking over authentic disability voices. And then you are confused as to why you’re losing the younger generations who have out of control mental illness rates.

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