Like many, I experienced church hurt that drove me out of the church nearly 12 years ago. I justified it by the revelation that the Lord would use (and was using) me greatly in the marketplace. But I realized just how the enemy exploited my betrayal, all while my prolonged hurt ultimately slowed my development. Yes, I was in my Word, yes my relationship with God grew in knowledge, understanding, and experience, but my detachment from the body led to isolation that was fueled by my childhood abandonment and rejection issues.
While I didn't discard God, I severed myself from the body. But, what good is a finger, if it is detached, yet the brain continues to send signals to where it once was. I was effective in one regard, but equally (if not more) useless in another.
Fast forward, I realized that my gifts aren't to be confined to an edifice, but used for the edification of the CHURCH, the Ekklesia, the Body of Christ. You see, we are assigned to function as a unit. I think because of the hurt experienced at the hand of man, we are lured into a trap or traps through the spirit of rebellion that seeps in through the wounds.
Earlier this year, I began getting a nudge from God to return to church, but as a member of the body and not just dedicated to an edifice. This came after I dove into my church hurt and began seeking healing. During this time of healing, the Lord issued a gentle rebuke by asking "what good are you apart from my body??" The Holy Spirit elaborated by teaching me that you can't discard people because of their humanity. But, are called to love despite the imperfections of others because I too am imperfect, yet perfectly loved by Abba Father. He then highlighted that to stand - separated, divided, and ultimately in opposition while judging the mistakes/shortcomings of the church was actually more harmful. That if I could discern the mistakes, I could surely pray concerning them. And if I could pray concerning them, then I could actively be a part because my gifts were given to edify His kingdom.
Why am I saying all of this?? Don't allow your pain, your disappointment in humanity, your unhealed afflictions to lure you away from purpose. The body of Christ, the Ekklesia, is the vehicle used to spread the gospel into all the world. We were called to be set apart from the world but never from one another. To function as brothers and sisters in Christ and to protect the unity amongst us; so that in the days of tribulation, we can stand firm in the power of the Almighty.
History has proven that a house divided cannot stand.
So, I challenge you today to begin seeking God for proper placement, restoration and a fire that burns for the unity of the CHURCH. I had clients over the years who would encourage me to return - they would say "Markeita, there's no perfect church". But, I would always respond "That's true. But, there's a perfect church for me." Knowing that God is concerned about every hair on your/my head, every detail pertaining to His children, I believe He has prepared a place of worship and/or community that is suitable for your/my spiritual needs, that challenges and chastens, and feeds the spirit as it requires for maturation. And it wasn't until I ask that He made it clear. It was solidified when I came into agreement with the notion that we are all flawed, and forgiveness and grace is needed.
But, let me also issue this warning: Don't run from what challenges your spirit. Our complacency and comfort is causing many to rot spiritually (sorry, that's the way the Lord gave it to me). The Bible warns that many will seek that which soothes their itching ears. What satisfies them and not challenges them. But, when the Bible says iron sharpens iron that can't happen without friction. So, your development and maturity happens in your discomfort.
I pray today that hearts will be healed. That wounds would be mended and the members of the Ekklesia would return. I bind the spirit of rebellion, the lying and deceiving spirit, the blind spirit, spirit of jealousy, spirit of bondage (orphan spirit) and any devices the enemy uses to keep one from purpose. I loose the spirit of Truth, the spirit of love and healing, as well as the spirit of adoption and every good thing that flows from above. That we may be engrafted and kept by the Power of the Most High God. No weapon formed shall prosper. You shall be replanted into community. Your heart is healed in Jesus Name and grace and forgiveness will be your portion. I pray a release of supernatural healing, that when you seek, nothing will keep you from finding the truth and reconciliation that is in Christ Jesus. We repent Lord for moments and seasons of error, but rejoice that in time You work to illuminate truth and offer healing and wholeness. We declare today that wholeness will be our portion, not because we are perfect in every way, but because You are. We welcome You to be Sovereign in our lives, and we honor You as both Lord and Savior, in Jesus Name.
May there be a mass re-entry of God's children back into the fold.