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I was in grade school. My Father was the first member ever officially excommunicated from the church I spent the better part of my life attending. I remember the shame and embarrassment I felt. I remember the confusion. Why didn’t he want help? Why couldn’t they help him? Why did they give up?

My family was the really messy broken one. My house was the one parents weren’t sure they should let their children come play at.

But it didn’t have to be this way.

Reflecting now? In this season. In my own mess. In my own brokenness. Which some of you read about here.

Others could have stepped forward. Others could have shared about their family’s mess and brokenness.

Because I don’t think this whole Church community thing is ever about comforting or coming alongside of your brothers and sisters from a place of superiority, but much like Christ, getting on a level playing field.

The church is yearning for authenticity. It has been crying out for its people to be real. It is tired of maintaining its pride at the cost of keeping its doors closed to the very people Jesus wants to usher in.

Because what happens when we act like we have it all together? What happens when we mask the pain and we pretend it isn’t as bad as it really is?

We do not give space for God to work. We take power away from what He is doing in our lives and we are actively saying we do not need Him as badly as we do.

We tell those that are not as good at hiding their crap that, “they are not welcome here”. Because those who enter here have their stuff in order, at least to some extent. You can’t be falling apart and if you are, you better not let anyone know it.

Everywhere I go I am in search of real, authentic Christian community where people let their crap out.

I haven’t had much other choice in this season of my life other than authenticity. I may have chosen a louder, more public form of authenticity than some are comfortable with. I’ve seen the looks, I’ve received the comments and the messages. You don’t scare me though.

You see, at the risk of making you a bit uncomfortable. At the risk of, “Did you see what Kelsey posted?” I’ve been challenged in this season to be authentic and to be more open about how God is working in my life. Not the sugar coated, nice, church answer. The down-and-dirty real deal truth.

Why?

Why not?

I have nothing to lose but the chance at authenticity.

I have nothing to lose but the chance to help build a community of people who desire to be real and raw about how God is working in our lives.

Because I desire for folks on the outside to see that followers of Christ do not have their crap all together.  That, through example, in a very REAL way, you are welcome in your mess. That yes, even people like me can love Jesus.

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