Thursday, March 8, 2012
Over the past two years my heart has longed for a church that allows the lay people the opportunity to pray for others and to minister healing through that prayer. Two months ago, my husband and I began visiting around for the place God wants us during this season of our lives. The day we walked into CCC we both knew this was it. The Spirit was sweet and the people loving. More importantly, the church was being the church. Sure you could spot one of the pastors because he had the microphone on, but without that you would be hard pressed to figure out who were paid ministers and who weren't. I had given up hope of finding such a place where lay people are being equipped to express their gifts.
The excitement has given way to fear. The gifts of God bubble up inside of me only to be snuffed out by what seems an irrational and unfounded fear of being rejected and unwanted.
I attended a crisis recovery group last week sponsored and staffed by the church. I was so nervous my heart started palpitating. Here is the opportunity to share. Here is the chance to give instead of take - though I fully expect to receive plenty. Here is what I have longed for.
Instead of running into the Lord's calling, I could not go tonight. To share with someone else, my addictions and shame (it too surfaced again) is too frightening. Just when I thought I had my identity firmly outside of the past, the past rears itself to cover me once again in the shame. Will I ever break free of this monster?
One scripture has helped. "Jesus endured the cross, despising (refusing, rejecting, ignoring) the shame...... Jesus refused to embrace the shame of being crucified. He endured the most shameful experience of his day, but he did not allow it to define him. I may feel like the one thrown out of the church, the one shunned, the one forgotten, but by HIS mercy I can turn my eyes to the truth. Not once has God forgotten me. Not for one nanosecond has Jesus discarded me. Never has He shunned me.
Jesus, son of God, savior, have mercy on me, a sinner! Help me not to turn to men's approval again but to yours. Set me free, Lord.
Posted by di at 9:24 PM