Consider this predicament: Your boss, the company CEO, has given you a high-level project. After a few months on the job, you discover that your new responsibilities involve falsifying records.
Not only that, but it appears your boss has been trying to cover up questionable accounting practices. When you confront the CEO, he makes it clear that your career will be over if you share his secret. He makes a strong argument that you have much more to lose than gain by going public. Then he demands your silence, asserting his authority as your supervisor to ensure you will comply.
Out of respect for his position of authority, do you keep his secret? Even if means you are putting yourself at risk, now that you are knowledgeable of a crime but choosing not to report it?
Now read this scenario: Mary’s husband, Jim, hasn’t been himself for months—moody, short-tempered, abrupt. One night, Mary wakes up and Jim is not there. When she walks downstairs, the reflection of the computer screen in the dining room mirror tells the story.
Jim says he is sorry and it won’t happen again. But the computer history tells a different story—he is binging on porn, and it’s only getting worse. When Mary suggests counseling, Jim refuses. Asserting his position as leader of the home, Jim also forbids her from telling anyone. Ever. Period.
Out of respect for his position of authority, should Mary keep his secret? Even if it means postponing her own healing and subjecting her family to the devastating effects of her husband’s escalating sexual sin?
Why is it that the corporate whistle-blower is applauded for standing up for what is right but the wife who wants to sound the alarm is often silenced by the very community that should be offering her the most support? Unfortunately, the not-so-subtle message being communicated by some in the church to these hurting women is: “Honor your husband by keeping silent, even at the expense of your own healing.”
Who is communicating this destructive message? It’s the elder who tells a wife she is overreacting. It’s the Sunday School teacher who whispers maybe she should first try heating things up in the bedroom. It’s the pastor who suggests the wife spend some more time praying for her husband to come around before meeting with a counselor. It’s anyone who even thinks, That is just how God wired men.