Avoiding the Potholes:
Preventing Clergy Sexual Misconduct
About the Book
Sexual misconduct amongst those in church leadership continues to be a pressing issue plaguing our churches. It can be likened to a pothole, appearing seemingly overnight with detrimental effects, but what causes the erosion and is there a way to stay clear? With powerful spiritual insight and teaching from God’s Word, Avoiding the Potholes addresses these questions, offering helpful, practical guidance for Christian leaders to avoid falling into this injurious hole.
This book is a wonderful, powerful, liberating, healing, empowering gift! Laura has written one of the most comprehensive works on sexual misconduct I have ever read. She has read thoroughly, thought carefully, prayed deeply! Working with the image of 'pothole,’ she goes to 'the why' of our struggles with desiring to be holy. She explores the physical, chemical, neurological, emotional, relational, spiritual dynamics at play, helping us make better choices, especially as under stress we seek comfort in all the wrong places.
What a redeeming and empowering gift!
Rev. Darrell Johnson
Author, retired pastor and professor, still serving as Teaching Fellow for Regent College, Vancouver BC
Clergy sexual misconduct evokes a variety of responses, most not very constructive: denial…despair…collusion…condemnation…hand-wringing…eye-rolling… In Avoiding the Potholes, Dr. Laura Nelson takes us beyond these typical responses to ones that can lead to deeper understanding, repentance, forgiveness, wholeness, and growth. As a denominational leader, she has dealt with clergy sexual misconduct firsthand; and as a doctoral researcher she has explored this difficult and complex issue from a variety of perspectives: Biblical and theological, sociological and psychological, and most of all pastoral. These few pages of prevention are more than worth several volumes of cure.
Dr. David A. Currie
Professor and Dean of the Doctor of Ministry Program & Ockenga Institute, Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, MA
Laura is a dear friend, a person deeply dedicated to Jesus, his people and their growth (including her own), and someone who takes the issue of sexual integrity so seriously she’s scoured the literature to deliver this important, timely book…and that’s exactly how you’ll feel as you read it too: hearing from a dear friend, straight from her beautiful heart and soul!
Rev. Jayson Graves, M.MFT,
Personal Coach/Pastoral Counselor