On Being Real

real church 3One reason why people don’t come to church willingly is because they don’t want to be judged. They usually already know what is not right in their lives. The last thing they want to do is to befriend and open up to people whose lives seem so ‘spiritual’ and perfect. They don’t want spiritual policemen in their lives!

real church 2And it’s not just people outside the church. We all open up to other people who are real about their struggles and can identify with us. And when we fail to find such people, we continue with our spiritual facade, looking great on the outside but a mess on the inside. A lonely existence that is true for many in the church today!

What will help people most in their quest for the truth about God and life purpose is for those who have experienced God’s forgiveness to refrain from being quick to judge and slow to offer quick advice. When we look down on others, they feel judged, condemned and unaccepted. And when we offer ready-made answers we fail to empathize with how complex their problems really are.

What we instead need to do is to offer grace and acceptance while living out the truth. People don’t care how much we know if they don’t know how much we care!
real church4
Is it possible that church could become a hospital for sinners, and not a hotel for ‘saints’? Is it possible that church could be the place where I can be loved and accepted when I’m going through a difficult stage of my life? Is it possible that church can be the place where sinners won’t feel like worms and losers won’t feel like second class citizens? Is it possible that people can open up about their addiction to alcohol, sex, or drugs or their experiences of abuse or struggles with mental health or HIV? And still be accepted, loved and helped?

Is it possible that church can become the place where people visiting are so struck by the love and joy and by relationships that cut across the barriers of age, race, tribe and social class that they inevitable conclude, ‘surely, there must be a God!’?

I believe it is. Let’s strip away the need to look perfect and be the church to each other. Let’s be each other’s mighty warriors. Remember, true courage never walks alone!

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8 responses to “On Being Real

  1. True this…the exact reason why Mavuno is my church…though there are times when I still feel alone, its much better than places I have been…I will endeavor to be the church for the wounded, haunted and hurt..so please help me God..

  2. Deep edification!
    I want to jus agree with you or still say yes to the question you paused – is church a hospital for sinners?…however it registers to the readers mind, YES IT IS!
    I pray that God who reveal to those who serve Him; THE EMOTIONAL SCARS AND UNHEALED INNER WOUNDS THAT PEOPLE CARRY ALONG WITH THEM!
    When a profane sacrifice is offered unto them, their wounded souls knows only endless pain and agony!
    Love covers a multitude of sins, to be like Jesus is not for the fainthearted, tis a sacrifice of its own kind…but without that love Jesus commanded us to have for one anothet, that love that He had for you N me, to a point of redeeming us from the filth we were in, we cannot be of service to others.
    Let’s accept whoever comes our way with their vices, knowing that, tis coz of His Grace, that we are whete we are…not forgettin we shall give account of our works @ the end of times- be blessed!

  3. Another reason people will not open up is because of gossipers in the church. Something happens like an eviction, divorce or separation or domestic violence or a miscarriage and some church goers look at you from a distance and talk about you to others. They say something is wrong with you and thats why you’re suffering, or that God is punishing you, and they keep their distance incase your suffering is contagious! Lol! Ok its not funny.
    If we want people to open up, we also have to learn to respect their need for confidentiality. Like Jesus. If I open up to one person about my situation, allowing myself to be vulnerable, and come back next sunday and others know about it, believe me I’d rather die than share anything else about myself ever again. Literally! People have committed suicide quietly and everybody is surprised, nobody knew what they were going through, or their frame of mind because talking about it only made it worse because of the gossipers and the judging. And the same church they belonged to now has to bury them. Mhm kill them and bury them.
    If I want anyone to be open with me, I must prove myself to be trustworthy to God first. Am I able to handle a person’s heart and hurt with care and discretion? I had an experience once at a bus stop where a stranger came and told me about his situation and then abruptly walked away soon as he was finished. I knew he was drawn to the Holy Spirit in me so I wasn’t taking any credit. People are drawn to the Holy Spirit, and if He has filled up our church and our hearts then people will come in big numbers to lay all their issues at the feet of Jesus.

  4. Dear Pasi,

    I like the blog and the whole idea of being the Real Church.

    However, I have a question that I would want it reciprocated to the people that want to find church real to them. What if every person that feels they have issues / struggle opened up and requested to trust / walk with them to handle the situations?

    I think as that is done we would then they would receive help. They don’t have to wait for them to be asked. They can do it and in the process more people will step up and all over sudden there is a new wave of ideas and things happening..

    Regards,
    Kigumi.

  5. I like the way Esther Obasi Ike (on 28th July 2013) was honest, that “the fire” wasnt something she built on her own. I was wowed by the fact that she said she has made mistakes along the way coz lately I’ve been feeling like maybe am the only Christiam making mistakes. The hardest people to preach to can be Christians who’ve been there and done that.

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