When I first read the article linked at the bottom of this post I was intrigued by its title. It is from a trusted and reliable source that equips people to battle sin. I am sure that on some level it is helpful. However, as I read on, and then also the comments following, it only further disturbed me with regards to the church and its handling of the subject of porn usage. It didn’t really clarify anything.
It seems it becomes a who will lead debate – the church or secular therapy, or maybe even a balance of the two? This is why there continues to be conflict in the church and indeed secrecy by those who are afflicted with this…dare I say addiction? We continue to debate and dissect, and that only detracts from the reality of the person torn asunder by the dichotomy of their faith and their actions. We have to have a specific category of belief structure and fall in line (as seen in the article) – that is such formulated church thinking, and part of the problem! I suppose thats why we have denominations!
As I have stated previously here this is a multifaceted war. It takes a combination of love and toughness, knowledge and Faith, strength and sensitivity. If church leadership continues to label people and separate themselves from the reality of the struggles its church-goers fight, it will remain weak and continue to shrink in relevancy and influence.
- I am encouraged when I find I have struggles that aren’t merely condemned but seen as real and legitimate, however misplaced my reactions to them have been.
- I am empowered when I find community that shares my dissatisfaction with things staying as they are and bands together together in unity to fight as one.
- I am equipped to be successful in my spiritual life when I am not dismissed to isolation because of the churches fears, but provided with the tools needed to be victorious.
- Its time for the church to acknowledge the real struggles of its people and reach out and be inclusive of them.
- Its time for the pastors to stop saying “They get three counseling sessions, then I pass them on to someone who is a professional.”
- Its time for our Sunday messages to get real and not just platitudinal.
- It is time the church realized that there are drowning people and no one is willing to throw them a line.
- It is time to stop separating certain people from the flock because we are uncomfortable with their struggles.
No matter what you want to call it, addiction or otherwise, it comes down to relationship and taking the time to minister to everyone. Yes, its time for those who struggle to come clean, but if they don’t feel safe – will they?
This is the age in which we live. There are new demons attacking the faithful, and they will continue to fall away unless we start loving them unconditionally, tangibly, and without prejudice. As Christ did.