Some stories have to be told and retold when the goal is authentic understanding. We must have understanding to make action effective.
In many ways I feel like I’ve told my “same old sad story” about the challenges I’ve faced in life and specifically in church. Because I hear myself tell it so much, I feel like I’m going to be that old guy who is always reliving war stories and never really doing much else. Today in part helped me realize that that’s not the case for me. The reality is that I’m meeting new people and building brand-new relationships. These new people don’t instantly get a complete picture of me so I have to over time share more of myself with them. The beauty about that is that we grow closer in the process and I gain a bit more understanding each time. Also, the purpose of sharing my story isn’t to relive it, but rather to learn more about my process and to take action in writing a new ending.
“Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective.” James 5:16 (NIV)
Today I had a long over-due meeting with my church. I was able to share some very personal and raw areas of my life and get a renewal of their commitment to walk with me through it all. Because of some very negative experiences in similar situations in the past, events like these stir apprehension and fear. What’s amazing is to go into a situation that has turned out so terribly in the past and to discover that there are other healthy people out there who have the same goals and aspirations as you do. It’s so affirming to be in a healthy church even though it’s not a perfect church. I underlined “to each other” and “for each other” in the above scripture because the events of today underscored the two-way relationship of accountability and healing in relationships. Each party must be able to own their part of what’s wrong, but also pray and support the other.
*Sigh* this is all vague now, but I hope to begin to retell this story with clarity soon. Thanks for listening.