Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Don't Shut the Door Behind You

I live in a semi-rural community. It is a popular community because it is only about 20 minutes outside of a metropolitan area; but because it is not in that area property is cheaper, lots are bigger and crime is lower. Because of that, many want to move from the city to what was once a rural area. Now it is only semi-rural, because of all the "come-here" folks, as they are called. The community has experienced lots of growth because of the come-heres.

Funny thing about the come-heres. They move into the area, and then they shout, "Stop the growth!" They try to pass laws keeping farmers from subdividing their property into housing developments. They want to keep it rural...once they get here. Although they don't mind that their new home is on what was once a farm too.

Sometimes in the Christian community, we too can want to come in, and shut the door behind us. Once we are saved and walk away from our past life of sin, we get comfortable in our upstanding Christian community. Then when the "sinner" comes to our church, we don't want their kind there. We yell "Stop the growth!" or "Shut the door!"

As Christians we try to hide our past, because we know we may be judged. It is said that "Christians soldiers" are the only army that shoot their own wounded. When someone in the Christian community stumbles in their walk, we want to kick them out, not try to restore them.

Today I want to encourage you to be brave enough to show your own "mess." When you show your mess it gives other people permission to have messy lives too. None of us Christians are perfect. God can turn our mess into his message. That is a message of change, hope and joy.

Don't shut the door on the sinners. Open the door and share with them how you too once were lost, but now are found. Grace is amazing, isn't it?



Bonita said...

Great analogy, Kelly!

Carmen said...

I couldn't agree with you more! If we stop pretending to have 'arrived,' and just be ourselves, and not be afraid of what that looks like--we show our continual need for dependence on God and that the christian life is an ongoing process. We all need each other. Another wonderful analogy, Kelly!

Steve said...

Thats good. I pray that God never lets me forget my past, but this is what it is, my past. I am now a saved sinner by the grace of God, and our goal as Christians should be, to see lost sinners come through the door, and pray that they'll leave a saved sinner.
God bless

Nezzy said...

Amen sister! We once had a newly divorces co-dependent woman stand up to testify and was goin' on about her shortcomings when she said, " everyone else here is perfect and live perfect lives." Right then and there I thought SHAME ON US. I put her together a little gift package and wrote a lengthy note letting her know how very imperfect we all are. I was blessed to mentor this sweet lady.

Ya'll have a terrifically blessed day!!!

Angel said...

Oh I love this post. You are so right we have to let people see our flaws, we have to be witnesses to everyone.

Stacy Wittkamp said...