I have had the deep privilege to join the woman's Bible study at my church. And what I mean by privilege is that I feel so blessed by God to have these women in my life now. I am the youngest in attendance, and I would put the oldest at 60 or so. We have such a wide range of ages, experiences, backgrounds, occupations, marital statuses, etc. We do not always agree, we have fallen short of perfection (far short of perfection.) We are all wise in our own ways and all foolish in our own multiple ways. We pray together, cry together, learn together, and love. Mind you, I've only been attending this study for three weeks now.
I am privileged because this is one of the few groups of Christians that I've met that have been willing to be so vulnerable so quickly. I appreciate so deeply when people are willing to open up deep parts of their souls and hearts and share that with others. It is an encouragement and an honor to have someone be so honest with you about their life. I know more about these women in three weeks than I know about some people that I've encountered MANY times over the past year(s).
Vulnerability is beautiful.
The tears of the wounded are painstakingly wonderful.
The worries, stresses, and groans of everyday life are real.
The praises of the trusting are undeniably encouraging.
The love of Christ that I see in each woman and the image of Christ found in each woman's eyes is so raw and lovely.
The Church gains nothing by trying to come off as "perfect." We as Christians do not grow when we do not admit our imperfections, our wrong-doings, our boo-boos. People who encounter Christians do not want to hear about how we have it all together and how loving and open we are. They know how hypocritical we are being when we say these things. They want honesty and vulnerability. They don't need our fake "perfection." They need to see Jesus. And I think Jesus is found amongst our imperfections, wrong-doings, and boo-boos because that's when grace shines through.
I love encountering the Lord in the Bible. I love encountering Him in my prayers. I love encountering Him in the beauty of creation outside. And I truly love encountering Jesus in people, we carry a light. How are we to shine our light if we keep putting band-aids over those lovely cracks that ooze out our vulnerability? We can't.
So let's reach out, let's love, let's be imperfect. Let us be vulnerable, confess our sins, humble ourselves before others, and apologize. Cry, laugh, scream. Bask in the imperfect perfection of being whole in Christ (because it IS an oxymoron... and also an amazing truth.) Be real and be honest. Let us be followers of JESUS, not followers of a world striving so hard to gain nothing worth gaining.
I pray for you that you may encounter the deep privilege of vulnerability in your life today, tomorrow, this week, this month, this year, this decade, this century. Enjoy it (:
Wednesday, April 22, 2009
Posted by SamanthaMarie at 9:14 PM