Growing up, I was asked so often by my church to be vulnerable - to open up and be honest with the people in my Sunday pews. Find a small group, I was told. Share your testimony. Confess your sins. Openness is a necessary part of love - I get it - I just wonder if the intense vulnerability we often leap to is really the fast-track to Christian love?
Imagine sending a fighter into the ring without a coach. There is no one in the audience rooting for them. They are completely alone. How will their morale survive the jeering? Say, somehow, they find the courage and strength to defeat their opponent. Nobody is waiting on the other side to embrace them. No one will share in their victory.
Nine months ago, I finished school. I thought God was going to open up an exciting door for me to serve Him in ministry. I thought it’d be only a matter of weeks before diving into the next big thing.
Instead, God gave me a gap year—something I would never have chosen for myself. And it’s been the best, worst thing ever.
Sometimes I hear people complaining about the music at church, or the lights, or the decorations, or the message, and a part of me just wonders if they’re lonely. How much of our struggle to worship at church is a struggle to feel loved by our churches? If I came to you with a movie Friday night, if I listened to you carefully, if I laughed with you and hugged you as I left - would you find that church this Sunday took a whole new color?