Come As You Are
Written By: Nathan David
Vulnerability has never come easy for me. I have spent most of my life trying to put on display the parts of myself defined as “good enough” and hide away the parts deemed “failures”. A couple of years ago through a few major moral failures in my life, I was unable to run from the ugly parts of my being. Rather, I was forced to confront them. Confronting your frailties, your hurts, and your insecurities is never fun. It is actually pretty terrifying. I would like to think of myself as someone who does not fear much, but there is nothing I fear more than real honesty with myself.
Vulnerability for me is a two part process. The first part of this process is being honest. Recognizing your faults, failures, and general shortcomings. But just recognizing these things is only half the battle. The second part of vulnerability is learning how to accept love despite those things. The message of Jesus, though very hard to accept at times, is clear, “.. While we were still sinners, Christ died for us..”. That is love that does not ask for perfection but just asks for an opportunity to be given.
Reunion Church has been many things for me, but most importantly it has been a place for me to truly practice vulnerability. Reunion Groups have become a place where I feel compelled to be honest and in turn have received so much love. Where I have feared shame in my life, I have found a community that has not just loved me, but also just liked me and believed in me. I truly believe that third part to be crucial. Not only is it important for you to feel loved and liked but its equally important for you to feel included. If I could use a sports analogy, you are not just on the team and sitting on the bench but you are playing in the game. You get to be apart of our collective wins and losses.
Our community, like any community, is made up of no perfect people, and I am so thankful that we are not only ok with that, but we welcome that. I believe that God is on a rescue mission for each of us. Not to be angry, not to say ‘I told you so!’, but rather to redeem and restore each of us. Though I would still not consider vulnerability to be something that I enjoy, I can confidently say I have gotten better at it.
Maybe you are reading this and you just need a re-start. Maybe there are some things in your life that you could use some help with. Maybe you are looking to serve. Maybe you are just looking for friends. If any of this sounds like you, we would be so excited to have you at one of our Reunion Groups. We will send you all of the information you need if you email firstname.lastname@example.org. Nothing is required. You can talk, stay quiet, come early, stay late, like it, or hate it. Just come as you are.