I’ve mentioned it before, but my staff team here is reading Tim Chester’s You Can Change and it has been very challenging and good for me at the same time. God has used it to convict me and at the same time encourage me! I highly recommend it, you should get it like yesterday! Anyway, this morning as I was reading I was once again challenged and sat at my desk contemplating much. See I just finished the chapter on living in community and helping one another take steps of changing as we live out the Gospel in community. There is just so much to share with you, this is why you have to go buy the book and read it, but I did want to share a quote/thought with you, that is actually in the book and on Chester’s blog too!
It’s about churches and churches being safe places for messy people – like you and me. Yes I said it, like you and me! You’re a mess! So am I! But that is beautiful because God’s grace, love and work is in the midst of our messiness is more than enough! (One of the first places I was challenged by the mess I am was from the book Messy Spirituality by the late Mike Yaconelli. It’s another good read!) Anyway, I could go on and on, but here is the quote from Chester’s blog:
One alternative is to be a church in which there is a lot of pretending; in which people have problems, but in which the culture does not allow people to be open about them. Churches like this are very neat and respectable. But I know I would rather be in a messy church! Mess reflects, I think, a culture of grace. We pretend because either we do not trust God’s grace for ourselves or we do not trust other people to show us grace. (from post entitled, A messy church or a pretending church)
So what type of church are going to? What type of church do you gravitate too? Do you gravitate to churches that “are neat and respectable?” Why do you gravitate to a church like this? For anonymity, so that people don’t see your messiness? Fight it! Be real. Do community in truth and love. Know that God’s grace is indeed sufficient! May we be transformed by the Word of God, but also by the beautiful mess of community that He has provided for us…