Participants: Shelley Quinn (Host), Ron and Nancy Rockey
Series Code: IAA
Program Code: IAA000317
00:30 Hello, I'm Shelley Quinn and welcome again to
00:33 Issues and Answers. You know, each time that we
00:36 begin I like to start with a scripture and share a thought
00:41 with you that will go along with the program. Today we're going
00:44 to be talking about how the wounds of our past actually help
00:48 shape us and move us in a certain direction and how
00:51 there's an answer to self- destructive behavior. But let me
00:55 read what I think is the answer. It comes from Romans 12 and
00:58 verse 2. Paul writes to the Romans, he says: Be not
01:02 conformed to this world but be transformed by the renewing of
01:06 your mind that you may prove what is the good, acceptable
01:12 and perfect will of God. Today we're going to talk about
01:17 how those issues from the past, from the early past, can shape
01:21 our lived, but how God can help turn that around. I'm very happy
01:26 to welcome back to the program Drs. Ron and Nancy Rockey.
01:31 So good to have you back again.
01:33 Thank you. And you all are family life and
01:37 now I'm not going to say that right, Family Life and Renewal
01:41 Yes. Okay, Family Life and Renewal educators.
01:44 See we took your Bible text and put it in our title.
01:47 You did didn't you. Tell us a little bit about what you do.
01:53 You both have your PhDs in psychology and counseling.
01:57 You also have a master's degree in family therapy both of you.
02:03 You know what, they have a master's degree from a
02:07 university but they've also got THE Master's degree because
02:11 they went through so many negative life experiences and
02:15 God helped turn that all around and that's where the real
02:19 education came isn't it?
02:21 Yes, absolutely and that text you read there renewing of the
02:25 mind, that's the philosophy, that's the core issue of Life
02:30 Renewal Institute. It's not renewing behaviors. It's about
02:34 renewing the mind; having a new mind and a new spirit.
02:40 We have discussed before how even in the womb there are
02:46 things that affect our thought processes and brain mapping in
02:49 the womb and in early childhood. But what we're going to be
02:54 talking about today is how those wounds determine the direction
02:59 that we go. Now talk about the Y factor for just a moment.
03:04 Well the Y factor is simply a graphic that has key words on it
03:13 The graphic is shaped like a capital letter Y.
03:17 That's why we call it the Y factor.
03:21 And that by the way is available to 3ABN viewers. They can
03:25 download both the graphic and the writing that explains the
03:29 whole thing off of our web site.
03:32 And what is your website?
03:33 www. yourlri. com Lri stands for Life Renewal
03:46 Institute www.yourlri.com
03:53 And they can download this. Now what you're saying then is the
03:59 wounds of the past help shape our, do we want to use the word,
04:04 esteem, self-esteem. Some people get so touchy about this and we
04:09 believe it should be Christ esteem. But there is such a
04:13 thing as self-esteem. Well it's self-worth.
04:16 Self-worth. Our self-worth whether it be
04:20 good or not feeling so good. Nancy, well both of us, had
04:24 issues with self-worth. We did. And you know what?
04:27 Our issues, yours and mine, began in the garden of Eden with
04:32 Adam and Eve when they were wounded. How were they wounded?
04:37 Because God's enemy lied to them.
04:41 So you're saying that sin always wounds us.
04:44 Absolutely. That's right.
04:46 Right after they got kicked out of the garden of Eden it says in
04:52 the Bible that Adam lays with his wife and she conceived with
04:59 Cain and she says, And the Lord has given me...
05:01 With the help of the Lord I have me. What's that about? Me.
05:10 Self has already kicked in.
05:12 Not Adam and I have conceived a child.
05:15 But the Lord has given me. I have.
05:17 I see your point. So right away she became self
05:21 centered. But what happened in the garden originally when Eve
05:26 took of the fruit that Satan lied to her about and she ate,
05:31 then she gave to her husband Adam and he ate, and then when
05:37 Adam ate the eyes of them both were opened and they saw that
05:41 they were naked meaning they saw they were guilty. They had done
05:46 a wrong thing. And we know, science tells us, that
05:51 unconfessed guilt turns to shame Guilt says I did a wrong thing.
05:58 Shame says I am wrong. There's something innately wrong about
06:03 me. And we know this happened to Adam and Eve because first
06:08 they covered themselves with fig leaves and then they went hiding
06:13 in the shrubbery. And God had to come looking for them. What is
06:17 this thing you have done? What is he looking for?
06:20 He already knew. And why does he ask us to confess. He already
06:24 knows. Because he knows how good it is
06:26 for us to confess. That's exactly correct.
06:29 I always like to add when you said that the devil to them,
06:34 first he did something that's even more devious in my mind.
06:39 That is he first gets them to doubt God's word. He always
06:44 wants to plant that seed of doubt and try to interrupt our
06:48 relationship with the Lord or keep us from coming close to the
06:52 Lord. Then we buy into the lie.
06:53 Our doubt creates access for Satan's agenda for our minds.
06:59 So that's a beautiful thought the way you said that. I like
07:03 the way you put that. When we've got in our lives, and both of
07:08 you had in your life as did I, people who are supposed to
07:13 protect us, people who are... Nancy you were sexually abused.
07:19 You were in a very dysfunctional family. What does that do to a
07:24 child when the one who stands in the place of the Protector,
07:30 the one who doesn't protect not only doesn't protect but
07:35 is inflicting? First of all before you say that
07:37 she's come from a dysfunctional family, but to everybody on the
07:41 outside it was a perfect family. Totally perfect. Exactly.
07:45 And many dysfunctional families that's the way it is. You know
07:50 you heard that old saying about maybe you live with an alcoholic
07:55 parent and it's the white elephant in the living room
07:58 because the children are taught to keep that all very secret in
08:01 and the family keeps it all secret and then they go and then
08:05 they sit on the front row at church and everyone thinks that
08:08 they're oh so lovely but they just don't know what dysfunction
08:11 is going on in the home.
08:13 Well the sad part in my beginnings is that my father was
08:18 a lay leader of the church, an astute biblical scholar and
08:24 everyone who knew him loved him very much. My mother was warm,
08:30 loving, affectionate, snuggly kind of a woman. But when my dad
08:36 came home from World War II I was four, so for those first
08:40 four years I had no father. Those were character forming
08:45 years when I needed the provider the protector, the priest, the
08:50 father and I didn't have him. When he came home he came home
08:55 as a master sergeant that he was in the army and he brought all
08:59 of his tactics with him so he was an absolute controller and
09:04 because he had been wounded as a child and never really accepted
09:10 by his mother even till the day she died there was no acceptance
09:16 for my father. Because of that the only thing he knew to do was
09:22 to reject me the way he had been rejected. So here I am his only
09:27 child, expected to perform perfectly and be an example for
09:33 everyone else in the church yet out of his mouth came despicable
09:40 things about me and to me.
09:42 Does that make him bad or evil? No. Makes him hurting.
09:46 And the sad part is I now know my father loved me the best way
09:51 he could. That's what I always say about
09:53 my mother, yeah. But the best way wasn't good
09:56 enough. It wasn't what I needed to become a whole and healthy
10:02 adult. Let me ask you, because when
10:05 you're wounded as a child like that and your self-worth is very
10:09 low, then this sets you up for failure. I mean, were you a
10:14 perfectionist because I was? I still fight that.
10:17 Oh honey, Ron laughingly tells people I ironed the sheets, I
10:22 ironed the towels, I ironed his underwear, I ironed his socks,
10:27 Everything had to be perfect. That all takes time and she
10:32 would cook a meal and she would have a presentation. Everything
10:35 was color coordinated and the whole ball of wax. So now listen
10:39 with my extreme background being rejected big time in childhood,
10:43 she's spending all that time away from me to make herself
10:52 look good. So she wasn't impressing me at all.
10:58 And was that my point? No. I was so desperate for male
11:03 acceptance because I didn't ever get it that I was trying to
11:08 perform for that acceptance, believe it or not, the way I
11:14 felt God expected me to perform so he would accept me and
11:19 human beings are a success or a failure based on the view they
11:23 have of their worth and their value.
11:26 But now how does that set you up? I don't want to spend the
11:30 whole time talking with Nancy. I also want to include you so jump
11:32 in. But particularly because we have some common things in
11:37 background. How did that set you up as far as your relationship
11:41 with the Lord? It was a performance. I was a
11:47 goody two shoes little Christian girl. I never...
11:50 Boy do we have a lot in common.
11:52 I never stepped out of line, girl, I never ever. I went to
11:58 public school from kindergarten through 12th grade and never
12:03 stepped out of line. Oh mercy. I know I wouldn't
12:06 let a boy even French kiss me because I was told not to so I
12:09 never... I didn't do anything wrong.
12:11 I know. I couldn't even date. I couldn't enjoy any of the
12:14 activities because they were all on the wrong day of the week or
12:17 they were too worldly. So believe it or not, I felt like I
12:23 was a weirdo and didn't know well how to relate to my own
12:29 peers because I had four adults in my home. The only ones I
12:35 learned to relate to were adults.
12:38 This is a very intimate question but was the sexual abuse that
12:41 happened in your life, did it go on in your home or outside the
12:45 of the home? No it was outside of the home
12:47 across the street, two old men. But you know, a child who has a
12:54 safe environment at home would race home to report what was
12:59 going on across the street. And it happened for five years
13:04 and I never told the truth. My mother never knew until I was
13:09 50 years of age that I had been abused.
13:17 Oh mercy. That's so painful.
13:19 And she asked me, why didn't you say. And I said, well mom
13:24 you know at home... and she interrupted me. She said you
13:31 know what, I thought until you just told me about your abuse
13:36 that I had never been abused. But you know, when I was 11...
13:41 My truth set me mother free.
13:47 Wow! So she had totally forgotten, or blocked out, not
13:52 really forgotten, but blocked out the thought about her own
13:55 sexual abuse. Correct.
13:57 Now hold that thought for just a second. I'm going to go to you
14:00 because you also came from a very destructive or
14:06 dysfunctional background. And destructive.
14:08 And you then became what you beheld. You became very
14:13 controlling and if anyone hasn't heard your story, my favorite
14:18 part of your story is the pay phone in the parsonage, how you
14:22 were trying to control your own wife's outgoing calls. But now
14:27 all of these wounds that you had and you were living out in self
14:31 destructive behavior because you had no self-worth, how did you
14:36 look at God? You're a pastor at this point.
14:41 Well it's interesting that when I was 16 years old that my dad
14:49 died. The week before he died he and I got close, and how we
14:55 got close is he let me drive the car home one day. That was
15:00 getting close. Nancy used to laugh at that. I said, well we
15:03 were sitting 2-1/2 feet from each other. That's close isn't
15:07 it? That's the closest I ever got to my dad. Then he died on
15:11 me. Look at the terminology. I came out of the movie theater
15:15 the day after he died and looked in the newspaper and it says
15:20 Stanley C. Rockey died of a heart attack. I said, if there
15:25 is a God listen to me once. I want you to take my dad to
15:30 heaven and I'll make sure I take his place in hell. At 16 I came
15:35 out from that place to make sure I go straight to hell. I wound
15:40 up going to prison. He did go to hell. Tennessee
15:44 State Penitentiary, Hell! You became a pastor after this?
15:47 After that. Now you ask me how does that relate in the
15:51 pastorate work? I would pray for you, I would pray for my wife,
15:56 I would pray for everybody else to ask God for things for them
16:00 not for myself. Because your image of a father..
16:07 I never got anything from my father. He always took from me.
16:12 And he took that father from me so why ask him for anything?
16:17 Isn't it amazing. I'm just sitting here thinking how many
16:22 people's lives with God, their relationship with God, has been
16:29 shaped by an earthly parent. God says, I thought you would call
16:36 me father and not turn away from following me and he's
16:40 talking on a very personal intimate level and what we have
16:44 a tendency to do is to project. My own father was killed when I
16:50 was six. My stepfather was an abusive alcoholic and we have
16:54 this tendency that our earthly parents, whatever they're
16:58 demanding of us or whatever they inflict upon us we kind of
17:02 associate that with our relationship with the Lord.
17:05 One day, I don't remember when it was, but remember again I was
17:11 raised in the movies and when I was pastor, about 30 years ago
17:17 now I was at my end. My whole pastorate was going down the
17:22 toilet and it was going bad. There was a mess in the church
17:26 and I couldn't understand it. No matter what I did my prayers
17:30 didn't work for the people. I found myself going to a movie
17:34 and came out of there... That was his escape. He learned
17:38 it early on. At age four they would give him a quarter and
17:41 send him to the movies. And he would get there by himself, get
17:45 home by himself and 25 cents bought him two full features
17:49 and all the cartoons and the news reels that came in between
17:53 and a bag of popcorn. That's a good four or five hours
17:55 I was gone. And I found myself saying to myself one day, I read
18:03 the Bible and it said, YOU ARE MINE. It clicked and he picked
18:08 me up, that's how I felt, he literally picked me up and put
18:14 me on his lap and that's where I find myself today.
18:17 Sitting on his lap and from that day on as I was in the pastoral
18:22 work I felt him along side of me every time.
18:26 Is that Isaiah 43 that you're referring to? Yes. Isaiah 43
18:29 verse 1. And that's where my worth comes
18:32 now. My worth comes, your dad might not have understood you,
18:36 your mother might not have understood you, nobody
18:40 may have understood you growing up but your mine.
18:43 I have called you by your name he says.
18:45 By the way that word there, name, means pet name. He's got
18:50 a pet name for us. It would be interesting to find
18:53 out what that is. I was so dysfunctional though
18:56 and so controlling that even when I was in prison the
18:59 brutality was off the charts in Tennessee State Penitentiary
19:02 back in those days. That was 40 some years ago.
19:06 What did you do? Ohhh. You name it. I was in
19:10 prison there. What he did not do is bodily
19:14 harm to anybody else. It was all petty thievery. This is what
19:19 rejected children do by the way. Rejected children notoriously
19:24 become criminals, however, the majority of them steal things
19:29 to try to fill the giant hole in their heart where the
19:32 relationship with a parent should be. They fill it with
19:35 things instead of relationship.
19:37 And I filled it with things as well but I filled it more with
19:41 controlling other people.
19:43 Well for me I can remember I didn't feel like there was
19:48 anyone there that I could run to. Especially I can remember
19:52 thinking oh I wish my father were alive, I wish my father
19:56 were alive and there'd be somebody that I could go to
20:00 well I was only six when he died so I don't really know that much
20:03 about my own father. But it was like, oh, if there just could be
20:07 somebody that I could go to, someone whose lap that I could
20:10 crawl up in and they'd say, oh I'll make it okay. But because
20:13 there was no one like that around I became fiercely
20:17 independent. It was like, I'm going to have to take care of
20:21 myself. I have a tendency to be a caretaker for everyone.
20:25 But that was my biggest problem coming to the Lord was that I
20:29 grew up having to be so fiercely independent, that self-survival
20:34 I guess you could call it.
20:35 Well you know what, that is a gift of the human brain, did you
20:40 know that. The brain is designed to see to it that the body,
20:45 physical body and the mind will survive at all costs. And here
20:50 we are now at that Y factor we were talking about earlier.
20:56 So the reason that we get on the wrong road is that we start
21:01 developing techniques designed to see to it that we will
21:06 survive. It's about control. I'm out of
21:08 control in childhood, later on I take control to survive.
21:11 So that's one of the techniques. I will control.
21:14 You probably never drank in your life because you're like me.
21:16 I wouldn't want to drink because I didn't want to lose
21:18 control. Well I had control in the
21:21 drinking. I was drinking pure grain alcohol before I quite
21:27 drinking and I never lost control.
21:29 Is that true? I don't know. I met him in the
21:34 courtroom the day he was released after 4-1/2 years in
21:38 prison. That's how you all met?
21:39 Yeah. That's another story.
21:42 So let's talk about this self survival type instinct.
21:46 So we develop techniques to see that we survive and
21:50 usually those techniques are not helpful to us. They are self
21:56 defeating techniques. Addictions of all kinds, drugs, and alcohol
22:03 and tobacco and overeating and religion and sex and on and on
22:09 it goes, all in an attempt to fill the emptiness that we feel.
22:15 That's what addictions are about I must survive. My mother and
22:19 father or my primary care givers who should have protected me and
22:24 cared for me did not. So if I'm going to live I have to take
22:29 care of me. And sometimes the pain is so
22:32 great that I used these substances to be able to numb
22:35 the pain. You see I never used any
22:37 substance. My sister did and God delivered her overnight.
22:41 But I want to bring this around because we're talking about this
22:46 issue and we only have a few minutes left and I don't want to
22:52 leave you hanging. We want to give you the hope that God has.
22:57 When we have these wounds that develop self-destructive
23:03 behaviors, these wounds that we have these survival, I'm going
23:10 to survive. Those thoughts themselves can keep us from
23:15 God because I know the secret. I didn't want religion. Religion
23:20 didn't ever do me any good. I mean I was a very religious
23:23 person but it was the relationship with God that
23:27 finally... and it was that thought, that fear, of having to
23:32 surrender control to someone else was just like ah ha ah ha.
23:38 But when you learn to trust and release the control of your life
23:43 to him he does have a plan for your life. How does someone get
23:47 who's... we're talking out here and have just a few minutes...
23:52 someone who says this is me. What you're talking about is me.
23:57 I'm in that self-survival mode. I'm in this control freak mode.
24:02 How do we get out of that mode to God?
24:06 They've already taken the first step. Because the first step is
24:12 telling yourself the truth. I am a sinner. AA says, the first
24:17 step is tell yourself I am an alcoholic. Telling yourself the
24:22 truth for the first time.
24:23 You asked me earlier if you were so controlling and off the chart
24:28 in the area of control, what made the difference? Just being
24:33 able to recognize all of a sudden with right knowledge,
24:36 wait a minute, maybe I do control Nancy. The pay phone in
24:40 the parsonage really wasn't for economic reasons.
24:45 I think that's so funny. I asked him, I said, you were a control
24:51 freak. He said, Yeah and I didn't even know it. And I said
24:54 you had a pay phone in the parsonage.
24:57 I had an excuse for everything.
25:01 So recognizing. Then how do you get...
25:04 Okay the next step - renewal. What does the word renew mean?
25:09 It means to make new again, be transformed. How can I be
25:15 made new again when in my history, in my past is all the
25:22 old junk. And the good book makes it very clear. Nehemiah
25:26 the ninth chapter the first verse. The children of Israel,
25:31 it's the day of atonement, what are they doing? They're standing
25:34 in the temple on the day of atonement and they are
25:38 confessing their sins and the sins of their fathers. Why?
25:45 So they won't replicate what their fathers did that caused
25:52 them to sin. So we tell people you know sure it's going to be
25:58 painful but you go back to your beginning. I have to go back and
26:03 look at what created me to get on the wrong road and my
26:09 foundational experiences created me to get on the wrong road; the
26:15 wounds I received, the abuses, the lack of caring.
26:21 And what you're looking at is not your behaviors but your
26:23 thinking patterns because of this.
26:25 And when you look at the beginnings, then you start
26:30 exchanging hope and love for fear.
26:34 And here we are. Already we're out of time. Thank you so much
26:39 for coming. You will come back? We're not going to leave our
26:43 audiences hanging. Here's the bottom line. The Bible tells us
26:48 in 2 Corinthians 5:17 that you are a new creation in Christ
26:52 Jesus. The old is gone and the new is come. So what Nancy and
26:56 Ron are telling us is that when we recognize our own sin and
27:00 look back and see what caused these behaviors. God says don't
27:04 dwell on the past. You're not supposed to go back there and
27:08 live it but you've got to recognize where the root is and
27:11 then you can take it to the Lord and you can go through this
27:15 process of healing and renewing your thoughts by letting his
27:20 word wash over you and transform your thoughts, replacing your
27:24 thoughts taking them captive and making them obedient to the
27:28 will of God as you just actually transplant his thoughts
27:32 in and uproot your own negative behavioral thoughts. You know,
27:36 I'm so glad that you joined us today. I feel like we've just
27:40 opened this and touched on the surface. But the Rockeys are
27:43 going to come back and join us again so we hope that you will
27:46 tune in next time. Till then may the grace of our Lord Jesus
27:50 Christ, the love of the Father, and the fellowship of the
27:53 Holy Spirit be with you all.