So much of our “theology” (and we all have “theology”!) is forged these days by hurts.
The Bible has been used as a club to beat us into conformity, so we reject its plenary authority.
Our need for mercy has been abused, so we latch onto a concept of grace that excludes the Lord’s occasional rebuke and discipline.
We have suffered from authoritarian leadership or a controlling church, so we become autonomous and discount the need for healthy, accountable community.
We realize that some pet doctrines were wrong, so we seek a purely existential Jesus and cringe at objective truth.
In our fellowships, we have found that balance and maturity comes from a two step process: We must fully expose our hurts to the Lord, and then explicitly offer to turn them – and the associated beliefs our hurts have caused us to hold about ourselves, the Lord and others – over to Him. This involves confession, and often even forgiveness (both giving and receiving).
Only when we take possession of our hurts by fully and transparently owning up to them as we expose them to the Lord, can we then release them to Jesus.
When we are willing to do this, time and again I have seen Him give something wonderful in return – wholeness and freedom!
In that wholeness and freedom, we finally start to know His fulness and can embrace all that He’s provided for us to find authentic life in Him.
The choice is always ours.
Bondage or freedom?
Hurt or life?
Us and our “stuff”, or Christ and His magnificence?