one of the unique pieces of my position at The Chapel is the several hats i wear. not just literally (i have a few of those, too, not to mention the sign in my office), but that beside being the Co-Director of Jr. High i have the opportunity to engage with several other areas. one is the mozambique arm of our Fresh Passion initiative. if you've been with me much over the past year, you've heard about how refreshing this has been for me...maybe not in so many words, but at least seeing in my exuberance for our work there a piece of jdh's heart lit up with excitement.
another hat i wear is that of "pastor of porn". yeah...it's ok...laugh a little. this part of my work has been a bit more frustrating. as much as i'm excited and blessed to be a part of six19 at Malone (and as it expands), trying to start up an entirely new porn ministry at a church this large on an issue that touches so many people and yet is largely unexplored is, well, overwhelming at times. not only is it a bit daunting (where do i start and where do i find the time, not to mention who do i find to work with me and what resources should we use...and the list could go on), but it's also draining. draining in the sense that it drudges up some of my least favorite parts of me...of my history. most of you know that i've had struggles in this area and that they were neither cursory or brief. so to give direction to ministry in this area can be discouraging. it's easy to keep the guilt factory running, long after its timecard should have been punched.
but then there are moments. moments like today, where you see a glimpse of the redemption that God is all about. and it's overwhelming and glorious and beautiful...all while being gut wrenching and tearful and a whole flood of other emotions.
this afternoon i sat in a room of six other brothers and sisters who share, in some part, in my history and struggle because of their own experience in this area. six brothers and sisters who have persevered when all hope seemed lost and held tight to the One who, it turns out, had us wrapped in his embrace from the beginning. these men and women are the core leaders that will be aiding me in establishing some sort of meaningful, holistic, gracious ministry at The Chapel to those who find themself drowning in the muddy flood that is pornography and lust. and as i sit here, holding back tears for the beauty i saw in each of their stories of redemption, i can't help but realize that as much as the path seems dark to me at times, that i have the unbelievable privilege of working for the One who is Light. and that Light is beaming of redemption. and it's gloriously beautiful.