This previous Sunday one of the young men in my church shared his testimony with us. He talked about his years long struggle with a pornography addiction and how God finally helped him break free. This was such a surprise to our congregation, but there was a deep sense of longing that I felt coming from the congregation. There was hope and through this young man sharing the story of his personal struggle others found hope they needed. We often try to sugar coat our lives in front of others, and baring our souls is a vulnerability that we fear. We cannot neglect this however, since it is the stories of how we persevere in the face of our struggles, especially those struggles in which we are against ourself, that we bring our faith to a level of reality. Especially when we are open with just how often we do fail, this opens us up to relationships that we might have avoided for fear of being exposed.
Too often we present a sanitized face to the world around us when we serve a God who kissed the lepers clean, touched the untouchables, valued those who the society around them felt to be worthless. When we expose our brokenness and the often slow and painful process of healing with all of its missteps, we truly share the hope of the gospel.
I was honored to hear a story of hope last Sunday, and the link to the audio of that story will be posted at 5:30 Pacific time on this page and at http://cpfchurch.net