We are a hurting people and we are afraid. We’re afraid to admit our hurts. We’re afraid to drop our masks. We’re afraid to be real. Why? Someone may think less of us. Someone may talk about us. Someone may judge us to be less than, uh, perfect.
Sometimes it helps to acknowledge our brokenness and admit what we all know anyway: we are broken people and we’re not the only ones. Someone told me once, “Preach to broken hearts, there’s one in every pew.” I have learned differently. There’s more than one in every pew. In fact, our pews are filled with them:
- They are parents burdened because of their prodigal children
- They are grandparents raising grandchildren because if they don’t…
- They are caregivers wondering if anyone understands
- They are single parents facing double-duty
- They are brethren struggling with secret sins
- They are smiling faces hoping to hide their depression
- They are a childless couple facing disappointment (again)
- They are folks facing both cancer and fears
- They are parents who have had to do the unthinkable: bury a child
- They are parents struggling to raise a special needs child
- They are couples doing everything they know to keep their marriage going
- They are widows who sit down as one at a table for two
- They are sisters harboring the secret of being a battered wife
- They are stepparents who seem to be on the outside looking in
- They are the lonely, the scared, the hurting
But they come. They come to the Table to share their grief with the One who gave His all. They come to lift their voice in song while brushing away a tear. They come to pray and connect with their only hope. They come to encourage someone else while hoping someone will encourage them. They come to hear the Good News and hope to take something away that will heal their hurt.
These are the people in the pew. Look around, they look a lot like you … and me. At least we come.
Whomever you are and whatever burden you’re bearing today, we’re glad you’re here. There is good news that shines brightly in the toughest of times. If we can be of any help or encouragement to you, please let us know.