I almost titled this post “Imperfect People Allowed,” but realized that’s wrong. Only imperfect people are allowed.
Let me explain.
Is That All You’ve Got?
I once read the fictional story of someone who got tired of pretending. He stood up at church one day and shared his mess, expecting that nobody would want anything to do with him.
He sat down embarrassed. Someone else stood up. “Is that all you’ve got?” That person shared their mess too. He no longer felt isolated or alone.
The book called The Cure” What if God isn't who you think He is and neither are you? gets it right:
What if there was a place so safe that the worst of me could be known, and I would discover that I would not be loved less, but more in the telling of it?
That place exists. And when you reach it, unresolved issues will begin to heal.
The authors point us to where we can find that safety:
Nothing you believe and depend upon is more magnificently freeing than this single truth: You are no longer who you were, even on your worst day. Trusting and leaning upon “Christ in you” is the source of every shred of strength, joy, healing, and peace.
Honest Truth from the Bible
Jesus said something similar. “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick,” he said. “I came not to call the righteous, but sinners” (Mark 2:17).
Jesus had all the time in the world for people, except for self-righteous people who pretended to have it together.
It’s the same all throughout the Bible. You see a parade of misfits and failures. Okay, some of the characters in the Bible are okay. But none of them are perfect. If anything the Bible seems to go out of its way to shine a spotlight on their struggles.
The point: God doesn’t relate to us because we’re good. He relates to us because he’s gracious.
Real Church Needed
We don’t always get this right, but we aim to be a church that’s real, where you can be honest about what’s happening in your life and get the support and encouragement you need. We want to be a church that provides space for people to drop their masks and get real about life, and then go running to Jesus.
Why don’t we always get this right? Because that kind of honesty takes courage. Although we try, we’re imperfect even in our efforts to admit our perfection. So let’s cut everyone some slack and fumble our way to Jesus who knows everything about us — including our worst — and offers us grace anyway.
Are you imperfect? Us too. Let’s drop our masks together and offer each other two gifts that go a long way: honesty and hope. Honesty, because we’re all in the same boat, and hope, because Jesus welcomes people just like us. Imperfections included.
Oh, and help us build a church where everyone hears this message.