Rachel Hollis has amassed a larger online following as a writer, conference speaker, and social medial influencer. Her books such as “Girl, stop apologizing” and “Girl, wash your face” are published by the Christian publishing house: Thomas Nelson. Her books make references to the Christian Faith and Bible verses. She’s very popular. Critics of Hollis argue that her writing is shallow and that the basis of her message is a non-Biblical message where life ultimately bows down at the alter of self.
Today, Hollis announced on social media that she is divorcing her husband. In the post, she talks of the long relationship she’s had with her husband going back 20 years, how they’ve worked on restoring their marriage for three years, and how they’re still going to be friends and business partners. Certainly, that’s all very unfortunate. While I think her theology is destructive, I can appreciate the tragedy that this divorce is.
One of the things that has been interesting on social media is the backlash that Hollis and her husband (David) have faced. In her social media announcement, Hollis mentions that she’s been “an open book” in her online community but asks for people to respect her family’s privacy. Critics argue that she and her husband were hiding that they were in a failing marriage while acting as if they weren’t and taking that to the bank. They even led marriage conferences which reportedly cost upwards of $1,500 to attend.
The issue with her fans isn’t that she was having marriage problems. The issue is that her and her husband were having marriage problems while acting like experts. Online, I’ve seen people accuse her of “toxic positivity” and espousing a philosophy that’s harmful to marriages. Others said they felt betrayed and accused them of putting up a front.
Again. It’s unfortunate. But I think it’s also illustrative of an important point for Christians. Your influences matter. You can be taught by someone who has the same philosophy as the rest of the world and tells you what you want to hear. Or you can listen to someone who’s going to teach Biblical truth (which is good, and wise, and edifying, but is not always what a person wants to hear).
It’s also illustrative of a point that our own theology that we believe matters. She taught a gospel that revolved around self. the Bible has a theology which revolves around dying to self.