Wouldn't that be cool? I mean, wouldn't it be cool to watch someone's life being turned around? Wouldn't it be cool to know that there was someone, somewhere, who is now more than they were because Christ had somehow found a crack in their defenses and gotten in? I think "Heck yeah, that's cool." I love watching that. I love watching the transformation when someone realizes, maybe even for the first time, that they are broken but that there is someone who loves them even in their brokenness. What's cool, is that I (and you) get to be an ambassador for that someone who loves them in their brokenness. THAT...is cool. We get to tell them about this someone.
I'm blessed to be part of a community that does just that at least 4 times a year. It's called The Walk to Emmaus and this weekend is the women's fall walk. Last weekend was the men's fall walk. There is a youth version that's called Chrysalis, and in this community, it meets summer and winter. Last night we had "send off" for the women's walk. That's where those who have already been come to support and love those who are getting ready to make the journey. We get together, eat, sing, laugh, pray, laugh some more, and then those who are making the journey begin their weekend and the rest of us go home.
Last weekend there were over 30 men that made their journey to Emmaus, based on the story in Luke of a similar journey made the first Easter weekend. It's funny how this thing works. These guys or gals show up on Thursday night and we start getting to know each other, but as the weekend progresses they (and we) discover their (and our own) brokenness. What's even more amazing is the end result...healing.
Jesus talks about healing alot, have you noticed that? And he talks about talking about healing, too. He does it again this morning. A few of John's disciples came to Jesus and asked if he was "the one" and he told them to go back and tell John what they had seen...the blind receive sight, the lame walk, those who have leprosy are cured, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, and the good news is preached to the poor.
Last night, it hit me. Last night I was reminded why I do what I do. It's not about me. I do what I do, we do what we do, for them. Sure, we nurture those on the inside, but our primary objective is to bring healing to a hurting world and show the people on the outside that we know someone who can change their entire world. There were three men who came to me last night and told me about how last weekend had done that, and how it had changed their life. They had found healing in their brokenness, and my friends, it really is a beautiful thing to watch.
At the risk of sounding like a broken record, sometimes we get caught up in "us" to the point where we forget about the blind, lame, sick, deaf, dead, and poor all around us. I know that I've mentioned this before, but it's a reality in our churches. So, this morning I'm asking forgiveness. Not from the institution or those who may feel that my priorities are misdirected, but from those seeking a relationship with God that I have ignored trying to maintain my own comfort. God forgive me for not seeing, or not acting on, the hurts of any that may be seeking you. God forgive me for not spending enough time telling folks about the healings I have witnessed over the years. God forgive me if I have ever sold out to protect myself. And God, if you don't mind, give me another chance to be what you have created me to be.