This past Wednesday at our church I witnessed one of the bravest things; an act of courage. When you think about acts of courage, you may think of a soldier in a war zone or a firefighter battling a blaze. Sometimes an act of courage is much closer to home.
We attend a rather small church; a church on the grow. Our vision is to grow a church in our community based on relationship; relationship with Jesus Christ and with each other. Since we are small right now, we are acquainted with everyone who attends our church. Relationships are growing but I would say that we are not necessarily closely knit together at present although we are growing in that direction. Obviously, we are new so other members are closely knit together already.
When we began visiting and then attending our church, we met a lovely woman who I recognized as struggling with homosexuality. For several years, I led a women’s Bible study and among the core group of attenders were three young women who had struggled with or were familiar with the lifestyle. Our Bible study was close knit, especially after two or three years together and we addressed many of the core issues that led to entering lifestyles that oppose the Word of God (not only homosexual lifestyles but all ungodly lifestyles).
This past Wednesday, after a particular powerful message from Pastor Buddy Rattray about stirring up things in your life, this lovely lady, stood on platform and with difficulty announced that she has been struggling with homosexuality. Make no mistake, it was obviously difficult for her. It was her standing before her family and stirring things up in her life. It was raw honesty. It was real. It was the bravest thing. It was not surprising or shocking to most of us. I had been aware of it for a while because…well, because once you become familiar with some spirits, you recognize them when are around them.
Why was it the bravest thing? Because quiet simply, she did not know how we would react. We would shun her? Would we act differently? (I hope we do act differently, I hope we pray for her more and that we are more supportive of her struggle) Would we REJECT her? Will it be awkward?
In so many Christian communities, people never get real…I mean really get real. No one knows about that there is an issue in the marriage until the divorce is underway. No one knows about the parent struggling with their child until the child is in rehab. No one knows about the financial issues until the house is in foreclosure. No one knows about the illness until chemo is underway. No one wants to discuss the porn issue in the church. No one wants to talk about the homosexual issue; the child and spousal abuse issue; the debt issue; the SIN issue!! Who is willing to stand up and talk about the SIN issue??
What is it going to take for you to connect and get real with your spiritual family? What crisis has to occur to change your answer to the question “How are you doing?” from “Blessed and highly favored!” to “Would you pray for me….” ?
Every one of us faces some struggle in our life; some sin; some issue. When will we be brave? What will it take for us to answer honestly?