What is a Christian cult exactly? My friend Leah grew up in what she calls a Christian “cult,” a super-fundamentalist church setting where women were routinely put down, disrespected and where she never heard that God loved her. To her, this is just what Christianity was. As she says, “When you’re in a cult, they don’t tell you you’re in a cult.”

It wasn’t until years later, in young adulthood, that Leah attended a “normal” Christian church and began to recognize what had happened to her growing up. Thankfully, she encountered a healthy church community walked alongside her, even helping pay for years of therapy to overcome her past.

It’s been a long journey, but Leah has been able to emerge from this painful church history and thrive inside a healthy church body for several years now. Rather than running away from God, she got curious and began exploring what it looked like to be a. Christian in a place that was not abusive and that did value her as a woman.

I share Leah’s story in my upcoming book, “Reason to Return: Why Women Need the Church and the Church Needs Women.” This is the first peek inside a few podcast episodes that will be dedicated to telling powerful stories of the church in the lives of women.

Recent episodes:

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