I can’t condemn or defend Christian Blasey Ford. I simply don’t have the information to even come close. It is possible she is bearing false witness. It is also possible that she is a victim of a sexual assault.
Here’s what troubles me: how my Christian community, by and large, has responded to her allegations.
Our first response was to call her a liar. We accused her of seeking personal gain. We convinced ourselves that she is part of political machine launching a smear campaign. Without evidence, that is what some Christians have done.
So, I know that there are victims of sexual assault in our churches, schools and sitting beside us at work. We are interacting with them every day. You know little girls who are being groomed for sex acts with a member of their family. You know a woman who had too much to drink was brutally raped. You know a woman who didn’t ask for it. You know men and boys who were psychologically imprisoned to keep the secrets of a coach or a priest who made them do horrible things.
They are watching. They are picking up on our cues. They are hearing our disbelief. And they are hiding even deeper. They are protecting their secrets even closer. They are terrified, not necessarily of the truth, but of the rejection they will suffer at our hands if it comes out.
How should we respond?
Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience… Col. 3:12
Let the wise listen… Prov. 1:5
To answer before listening— that is folly and shame. Prov. 18:13
You shall do no injustice in court. You shall not be partial to the poor or defer to the great, but in righteousness shall you judge your neighbor. Lev. 19:15
When those of us who have been assaulted see that, then, we will believe you are a safe place. Then we seek comfort in your arms. Then we will know, you really are one of His.