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Wednesday, July 15, 2015

A Year of Lament, Part 1

image from Bobbi Dombrowski
Sunday, August 10, 2014

It's been such a tumultuous year, Lord.  My heart feels like it's been beat to a pulp with all that's happened.  I've felt many times as though I'm drowning in brokenness.

Why do people in the evangelical/conservative/American/whatever church dismiss people like N.T. Wright, or like Scot McKnight, or even like Donald Miller or Eugene Cho, without even truly weighing what they have to say?  Why are there brilliant lines of thought coming through the likes of these people that hold desperately needed wisdom, that Your people refuse to give a second thought?

Why do we, Your people, spend the bulk of our energy concerning ourselves with things other than what Jesus revealed as the primary concerns of Your heart?  Why are we increasingly defined by who we kick out of fellowship?  Why is Your Church no longer a refuge, a safe place for the most broken of sinners and proponents of the most scandalous grace?  Who do we think we're pleasing?  You?  Surely not.  What are we trying to prove?  That we've got it right and those who don't ought to be shunned?  How far from the life Jesus lived...

My heart has been so overwhelmed with grief this year, and the most grievous part is almost every single drop of this grief has been born of the words and/or actions of Your people.  God, I know we're all broken and imperfect, but is this seriously the best we can do??

We need more Lisa Smiths and Whitney Gorbetts and Cari Jenkinses.  We need people who actually believe in the power of love to transform.  We need more conduits of Your grace and agents of Your healing.

I think the hope that lives in me has been brutally assaulted over the past year.  I think the enemy has tried to kill my belief in Your Kingdom's ability to invade this broken, hurting world as I've watched its citizens fire cannons at each other and perpetuate a cycle of devastation that renders us completely incapable of being any good to the world around us.

God, I know You are bigger than our brokenness, our ignorance, our refusal to listen to Your voice.  But I am desperate to see Your Kingdom breaking through all this senselessness, to see Your people acting as Your hands and feet instead of assuming we can act as Your mind; to see Your Church serving, loving, helping, and healing rather than judging and condemning.

Lord, have mercy.

Thank You for being a good God I can believe in even as I watch things crumble around me.  I know You desire more for us than this.  Help me to be an instrument of that.  "Make me an instrument of Your peace.  Where there is hatred, let me sow love.  Where there is darkness, let me shine light."  Help, Lord.

Read here the IntroductionPart 2, and Part 3.

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