SUMMARY: This page includes sections about my background in training and in SBC involvements, this blog and why I compiled it, and basics of my approach to challenging systemic abuse.

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About Me

SOURCE NOTES: I pulled together many of the following details about my involvements with the SBC over the years, as part of my responses in Dee Parson’s Wartburg Watch post of January 7, 2020, entitled, Prediction: SBC Entities Will Be Sued Because the *Doctrine* of Autonomy of Churches Is Not Easily Understood or Accepted and Will Be Challenged.


You’ll find my comments by my online handle, “brad/futuristguy,” which I started using nearly 20 years ago as an easier way to relocate my comments online. (There were at least three Brads involved in commenting on the same set of theological and missional blogs back then. Made for a lot of confusion until I changed handles.)

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I am a linguist and futurist by formal training; a book editor by informal mentoring; and a culturologist, toxicologist, and organizational ecologist by osmosis. I have been working with non-profit agencies–in both community and Christian settings–since 1972, been blogging regularly since 2003, and doing research writing on toxic systems and social transformation since 2007.

My main blog is futuristguy, and I’ve posted a lot of references and resource tools for abuse survivors, advocates, and activists at Systemic Abuse Researcher Notes. Also, you can read about my capstone project–a training series for deconstructing toxic organizational systems and (re)constructing healthy ones–at Futuristguy’s Field Guides. I’ll link to some articles on these blogs throughout this SBC Abuse Solutions site, or, in some cases, copy and paste article sections here.




I’ve been associated with the missional non-profit Matryoshka Haus since its beginnings in the early 2000 decade. I’m also a co-author of The Transformational Index with Shannon Hopkins and Andy Schofield. This is a planning and impact assessment tool for “measuring what matters” with qualitative indicators of personal and social change.



I was reared Lutheran and became a born-again Christian during my freshman year in college. Since then I’ve been in SBC churches at least 30 of the last 45 years–so, basically, two-thirds of my entire adult life. I’ve participated in 10 SBC-related church plants including on the launch team for eight plants and cultural contextualization consultant for one (which served as my Theological Field Education project at Golden Gate Seminary).

I also worked in multiple departments for Golden Gate Seminary (recently renamed Gateway Seminary) for 11 years total, from the mid-1990s to mid-2000s. Much of my administrative assistant work involved systems-oriented projects. For instance: writing procedure manuals, editing the course catalog and faculty manual, and doing research/documentation projects related to seminary governance, history, and human resource issues. While working at GGBTS, I completed about half of the coursework for a master’s in intercultural studies, focusing more on church planting and leadership courses, as I had done a lot of theological studies on my own since the mid-1970s.

My background in church planting includes being in the very first wave of NAMB Nehemiah Project church planters and team members circa 2000/2001 and serving as a church planter candidate assessor in the early 2000s. (My specialization was in evaluating communication skills for what presentation structures could indicate about matches with particular kinds of cultural settings.)

From this extensive background in and around the SBC, I have a lot of concerns about what I’ve seen as a lack of understanding about abuse survivors, ministry to them, and commitments to intervene transparently in abusive situations and implement stringent abuse prevention measures. This doesn’t mean I think every church affiliated with Southern Baptists is fatally flawed. In fact, one of my absolute best church experiences–one that kept me in the faith after I endured a horrific church split–was an SBC church plant led by a classic Reformed Baptist narrative preacher. You’ll find my account of that life-giving experience in this post, the section on The Whole and the Holes: An Intergenerational, Intercultural Church Genre That Counteracts “Spiritual Osteoporosis.”


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About This Blog

SBC ABUSE SOLUTIONS is a resource blog to equip people to identify, research, and resolve systemic abuse in the Southern Baptist Convention.

This is a static site, with comments and “likes” turned off, and no contact form. I have invested what time I could in January 2020 to get this site together, but my priority now is to complete my four-volume training series, which should answer many questions readers might have.


I hope these materials help repair damages inflicted during past and present abuse situations in the SBC, and foster better intervention into current cases plus ministry to survivors and strong systemic safeguards for prevention of victimization in the future.

Types of material include:

  • Reference links to SBC source materials on governance, institutional entities and actions, theological issues, and abuse prevention/ministry resources.
  • Set of news reports, case study articles, and analysis/critiques selected for their direct relevance to #SBCToo and systemic abuse situations, issues, and efforts in the wider Southern Baptist Convention.
  • Select list of abuse survivors, advocates, and activists with blogs and/or Twitter accounts. I link to Twitter accounts instead of Facebook, as Twitter has been where a larger number of people have been engaged in connecting and commenting on issues of systemic abuse in general, and with individuals and institutions of the SBC in specific.
  • Background research and analysis articles on systems, systemic abuse, and how these relate to the SBC.

I have tweeted extensively the past few years about abuse-related issues in the SBC. If you are interested in rummaging through that material, I’d suggest using the search function on Twitter, and use a combination of my handle — @futuristguy — plus any of these hashtags:

#SBC [along the lines of general denominational issues].

#SBC19 [the 2019 annual meeting].

#SBC20 [the 2020 annual meeting].

#SBCToo [the version of #MeToo in the SBC].

#CaringWell [the conference and ministry resources].

#AbuseOfFaith [general comments on that topic, plus specific comments on the 2019 Houston Chronicle/San Antonio Express series spotlighting sexual abuse in the SBC].

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About My Approach to Challenging Systemic Abuse

SOURCE NOTES: The following material was originally posted as a Twitter Moment on May 25, 2019: Toxic Situations: Approaches to Our Resistance. I described it thus: “What do we do when we figure out we’re in a toxic situation? I don’t have a formula for exact actions. We need to discern and decide for ourselves whether to stay or go, stay flexible, and listen for wise input and feedback from a variety of sources.”

I chose this as a succinct introduction to my overall approach in engaging with individuals and institutions where systemic abuse is at issue. It also links to blog posts that expand on some of the key elements in the ways I think about abuse and advocate for survivors. I’ve edited it slightly for the sake of clarity.

Here’s thread I wrote–tried as best I could to capture paradoxical approach I have in dealing with systemic abuse and toxic situations. And I’ve been in middle of way too many of them, in vastly different types of organizations! Hope it gives clarity …

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In a thread on recommendations to SBC International Mission Board for change, @kmichelle031400 asked me this: “I just want to understand where you are at. Are you a supporter of transforming an abusive denomination or a supporter of leaving and standing on ethics and principle? I get confused with your tweets.”

I get it that my tweets can be confusing. Some situations, I advocate organizational repair to make it safe/sustainable. Other times, I advocate shut down/dismantling because it’s so toxic it’ll just continue doing damage. Here’s as concise as I can get my approach at this point.

My perspective is paradoxical. Individuals have both freedom and responsibility to discern and decide for themselves how they’ll respond to malignant people and toxic organizations, what their particular role in resistance should be and why, and who they do/don’t collaborate with and why.

They may choose to resist from inside and support transformation efforts, or to leave and challenge from outside the organization. They may change their course of actions if circumstances change, or if they see things more clearly, or just feel compelled to. Choice, not a formula.

I don’t advocate dictating that everyone stay or everyone leave, or what they do with their giftings to resist, but each of us discern and decide for ourselves, according to our conscience, our spiritual gifts, how the Spirit seems to be leading–and accept consequences of our choices.

I believe people with principles and ethics might choose to stay insiders—but the reality is, “loyal opposition” most often leave *eventually*–when they feel free to go in good conscience, and/or because they can’t endure the situation any longer, or get kicked out by toxic leaders.

I believe people with principles and ethics might choose to fight back from the outside and support survivors, challenge toxic leaders, and encourage insiders to think for themselves and serious consider leaving. Or be whistle-blowers who are at least temporarily between both worlds.

I’ve done all of those, scattered across 5 major situations that lasted 20 years out of the last 45. I don’t have a Rule List For Exact Actions, just principles: Discern/decide for ourselves, stay flexible, and it’s always wise to listen for input and feedback from variety of angles.

I don’t want to dictate what others “must” do to be on “right side” of challenging abusive organizations and I don’t want anyone to dictate what I “must” do. That’s seems just another form of Bill Gothard’s “Umbrella of Authority” with someone replacing Jesus as mediator between God and me.

I don’t expect everyone will be on board with my approach of individual right + responsibility to determine where we fit. But hope we’ll at least consider other options beyond just stay-or-leave. I’ll expand on this later this year, including case studies that SHOW possibilities.

Two other thoughts on why I believe understanding our approaches to resistance is crucial in this moment of #MeToo: (1) Infighting can quench momentum and fracture the movement, and (2) how we *best* resist differs according to our gifts, experiences, abilities, and opportunities.

#1. If we don’t allow each other both freedom of choice and charitable challenges, that could become a major fault line, fragmenting Christian wings of #MeToo movement. This is why I’ve argued as best I can for treating all with dignity, hospitality, being conciliatory, and promoting justice. The way I understand it, these = core characteristics embodied by those Jesus called “people of peace.” It’s who He told His followers to seek out. It’s the kind of person I strive to be in a world that is all too often filled with both unsought horrors and unwanted complexities.

#2. People function thru their spiritual gifts/ministries in how they contribute to resisting evil and challenging toxicity. Prophetic people often come across as hardcore. Teachers, more informational. Pastors, support/compassion. Evangelist, encouraging victims to come get help. This is why I’ve invested in researching case studies to find details, look for patterns, and from all this, develop indicators to help people discern degrees of toxicity, and compile a range of evidence-based possibilities for how best to respond given specifics of the situation.

Teacher through writing. Information worker. Resource developer. That’s my gig. It’s how I process my own life and where I sense I’ll have the most impact with limited time + energy I have. I almost never do speaking engagements, petitions, protest marches, media, counseling, etc. I’m okay with that, it’s what makes sense to me. I hope we can all become more charitable with each other in our decisions before the Lord about what thing we can best do to make a difference for others, where we’re at, using what distinct resources we have to work with Thanks. Selah.

ADD-ON LINKS. This section shares older online versions of relevant material from last few years. Planning to update late 2019 or 2020.

#1 Part 1 – How do we transform corrupt systems yet keep conciliatory attitude toward one another without losing truth or justice? Part 2 – It’s one thing to expose darkness and pave the way for moving into the light–another to create transformation pathways to change a hijacked or corrupted system and repair relational and organizational damage. What does it take for remediation to work?



#2 What does it looks like to be “people of peace”? A series of articles on the contour of actions and underlying character of such bridge-building justice-seekers. Includes many examples from my own background and experiences.


#3 Responsibility for Spiritual Abuse (Compilation of Posts).Be sure to take a look at the charts in these Parts, as they capture a range of options for repair work on corrupted systems.


  • Degrees of toxicity and developing remediation (damage repair) [PART 3A, B, C, D].
  • Range of options in responding to abusive people [PARTS 3E, F].
  • Range of options for dealing with or dismantling systemically abusive organization [PARTS 3G, H].

Glad the thread was helpful. I usually land on both/and answers to things unless there is a definite either/or–right/wrong mandate. I live in such in-between zones on many issues which likely is frustrating for others to figure out where I’m coming from, and uncomfortable for me.

A bit difficult to describe what goes on in my processing. Kind of “quadrophonic chaos”–voices of (1) thoughts, (2) emotions, (3) knowing what I’m thinking while I’m thinking it (metacognition) and (4) knowing what I’m feeling while I’m feeling it or soon thereafter (recipathy).

And writing it out usually helps me sort it out, plus questions that get asked or problems that need to be solved usually spark my putting it together. So, thanks again for your question, Kimberly. Helped me bring some order to the otherwise chaos!

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