Toxic Tuesday: Lysa TerKeurst’s Betrayal

My heart aches for Lysa.Toxic Tuesday biochem hazard small

I suspected this for several months. The  times I listened to Lysa in Bible studies or on pod casts over the last year I wondered if this was the difficult circumstance she was living in of which she couldn’t speak. There are some things so profoundly deep and traumatic that when you hear someone else speaking with such words…your betrayed heart reaches through multi-media and feels their secret soul-hurt.

I realize publication dates precede the release of her letter. I don’t know when it happened or when she made it public, but I’m grateful she was obedient in her calling to write a book and Bible study that would help her, and help others who would go through similar circumstances.

Rejection, Heartache, and a Faithful God

No person’s rejection of me can ever exempt me from God’s love for me.

“A Gut-Honest Look at Love.” That was the title of my first blog post of this year. Based on 1 Corinthians 13, I wrote, “Love isn’t what I have the opportunity to get from this world, love is what I have the opportunity to give.

This perspective on love has been a lifeline during the most painful season and decision of my adult life. I so wish we were sitting face-to-face so you could see my tears and hear the deep grief in my voice as I share this with you. My husband, life partner and father of my children, Art TerKeurst, has been repeatedly unfaithful to me with a woman he met online, bringing an end to our marriage of almost 25 years. For the past couple of years, his life has sadly been defined by his affection for this other woman and substance abuse. I don’t share this to harm or embarrass him, but to help explain why I have decided to separate from him and pursue a divorce. God has now revealed to me that I have done all I can do and I must release him to the Savior.

Continue reading the continuation of Lisa’s letter here….


If you find yourself in a season traveling the same road as Lysa you may find her book “Uninvited” at Amazon or Christian Book Distributors (Book, study guide, DVD study, or Audio book)


The enemy wants us to feel rejected . . . left out, lonely, and less than. When we allow him to speak lies through our rejection, he pickpockets our purpose. Cripples our courage. Dismantles our dreams. And blinds us to the beauty of Christ’s powerful love.

In Uninvited, Lysa shares her own deeply personal experiences with rejection—from the incredibly painful childhood abandonment by her father to the perceived judgment of the perfectly toned woman one elliptical over.

With biblical depth, gut-honest vulnerability, and refreshing wit, Lysa helps readers:

    • Release the desire to fall apart or control the actions of others by embracing God-honoring ways to process their hurt.
    • Know exactly what to pray for the next ten days to steady their soul and restore their confidence.
    • Overcome the two core fears that feed our insecurities by understanding the secret of belonging.
    • Stop feeling left out and start believing that “set apart” does not mean “set aside.”
  • End the cycle of perceived rejection by refusing to turn a small incident into a full blown issue.


Continue reading the continuation of Lisa’s letter here….


Writer, wife, imperfect home schooling mom to 3 amazing humans. Writing about lessons learned from surviving 100% of my worst days. Educating the church about domestic violence & abuse in their midst. Advocating for abused women living in, or leaving destructive marriages. Living an A.I.P. lifestyle. St. Louis Cardinals fanatic. Dog lover, Football fan.

6 thoughts on “Toxic Tuesday: Lysa TerKeurst’s Betrayal

  1. Lysa, I know you don’t know me, but you’ve been a friend to me for the last year through a dark season of betrayal in my life. No wonder your words brought such deep hope and encoragement to my broken heart. Thank you so much for having so much courage to stand and be a shining light of hope, forgiveness and live through your own heartbreak. I am so very sorry for your pain. I love you and your family and will be praying for you. 💔🙏😊

      • love that you wrote this, as I went through about the same in a much smaller scale of ministry. Yet I lost everything, my church friends, my in laws , my home etc,, that was almost 5 years ago. I still struggle with the religious group but have found so much comfort in my small support groups. Thats were I feel god is , some of the Church people need to wake up.
        It takes more than prayer, it takes courage and action to move forward.
        her husband obviously has a sickness, and is broken. I admire her intentions and I admire her courage to call things the way they are.
        Just because she didnt share these things before , doesn’t make her weak, I know the heart of a godly wife, we will do almost anything to repair our marriage.
        However it is not what God would have for us, once our husbands hearts have turned cold.
        So many broken believers hide behind their faith until one day it just doesnt work anymore, their broken behavior takes a life of their own.
        My desire is to help bring more emotional support and 12 step recovery into the churches and share with people the tools they need to know they dont have to stay in a Toxic , betrayal relationship.

        God Bless you Lysa so glad you have influential friends like Shelly & Louie who understand that bad things happen to good people and God will not fail you….

    • When do you give up? There may be a different answer for each individual. 1) When you are in danger. Take the threat assessment test. 2) If you have biblical grounds for divorce you have the option to divorce immediately. You also have the option to forgive and work it out, but you aren’t required to do so. 3) If you know your spouse has a character/personality disorder manifesting in physical, sexual, financial or emotional abuse with no regard to your needs and feelings, not one mention of remorse or an apology, and endless denial and justification then it may be time to seek help for leaving safely. If you decide to stay, you need to be able to stay safely with your integrity, sanity, and boundaries in place. I recommend Leslie Vernick’s book; The Emotionally Destructive Marriage for help on how to do this. Leslie has questions in the front of her book to help you understand if you are in an emotionally destructive relationship. Please understand that most abusers do not get better, the abuse usually escalates with time. I also recommend biblical counselor, Patrick Doyle’s free videos on Youtube. Most importantly; pray about everything involved with staying or leaving. I hope this helps you.

    • I’m way behind on checking and answering comments. I’m so sorry! When to give up is an individual decision based on prayer. Is it abuse or infidelity? Either way, you have grounds to leave. If you are unsafe, leave immediately. If you have no where to go, call Domestic Violence. Call the police too if there is grounds to do so. Domestic Violence exists for not just physical abuse but also emotional, financial, and sexual abuse. Unfaithfulness while still having sexual relations with your spouse is a form of sexual and emotional abuse. If infidelity has occurred repetitively, or is ongoing with no repentance chances are the behavior will not stop. If you are asking I believe it’s safe to say the unfaithful spouse needs long term, ongoing, professional help with a counselor who specializes in helping abusers, or helping with unfaithfulness. Not just any counselor is knowledgeable for helping with these issues. This IS NOT to include marital counseling. You SHOULD NOT attend counseling with him/her. If their counselor insists on seeing you, it should be only you. Even this I would run past your own counselor before attending. Do you have children in the home? The world tells us that kids are resilient. Bad news: This is a lie straight from the devil’s mouth. Do kids adjust? Yes, but it does change them. Good news: They can make it through with the power of prayer. My personal belief is that if safety isn’t an issue and you can keep your sanity, it may be beneficial to wait until the kids are grown. There is no ‘one size fits all’ answer to such a complex relationship/issue. If you need professional help from an expert in this area, Leslie Vernick offers a CONQUER group for women in difficult marriages. Her cost is $27 per month and gives you access to all her teaching materials, video casts, podcasts, and multiple live phone calls per month with the ability to ask her questions one-on-one. If you don’t have the ability to do this; counselor Patrick Doyle has over 100 videos offered FREE on YouTube. I hope this helps. ~Blessings


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