By 

The Church: Wounded


Trust is a fragile thing. It is the precious crystal of stone that we place in different abodes, in the hope of it being protected and respected. It is a piece of our hearts, vulnerable and exposed, allowing the place where we lay it down to touch the rawest parts of ourselves.

Trust is a fragile thing. It is easily trampled under foot, until the microscopic shards leave you ripped and bleeding.

Trust is placed in many places and many faces. It may be placed in godly leaders in our lives. We trust their words and leadership. When we trust we often look to them as if that they are the Church, and when trust is broken, all their words come into question. But reality tells us that men are all fallible and the Church is more than its leadership, it is Christ’s flesh and bones, it is the teaching once delivered to the saints. Trust cannot alone be put in godly men and women around us. Trust must be primarily in God, who is infallible, who is our Truth.

But what is our Truth?

Where are we and what do we believe?

In what teaching do we trust, to what Truth do we hold on to?

Our allegiance is not to men and women who teach, but it is to the Word, the only Word that is Truth.

It is not uncommon to bite the hand that feeds us. Truth may feed us for some time, while later, in our pride, we may become our own truth. I recently discovered that I was master of my own ship; was once taught how to sail, then later made up my own way to tread through many waters.

I have seen war, and I have heard rumors of war between leaders amongst the churches. I don’t know politics, but Church is the politics I have been forced to learn. Church is the place I have hurt from, and I have hated, countless times to remember. It is in this place I have witnessed unforgiveness, injustice and anything but grace.

Yet the Church is home to the Spirit of God, the Spirit of Truth. The Truth that outshines any darkness. And in that Truth I realize, it is man whom I have hurt from, I have hated, and I have witnessed unforgettable sights. All the while the Church stood firm, rooted in the teachings it has held for centuries. But often, as a response to my own hurt and frustration, I not only reject the perpetrators, but I reject too the teachings the Church is founded on, as if this will be the soothing ointment to my wounds. Bitterness has never healed a wounded heart, and rejection of Truth only leads us further from the Truth. Out of hurt, it is easy to run, like the unfaithful lover who cannot choose to stay, who cannot choose submission, who cannot choose to fight for Truth. When I reject the Church, I choose a war of emotion and grief instead of love and peace; I run to my own beliefs, separating myself from the community of the church, choosing to look upon the bride of Christ with judgement and condemnation.

“A sect is separation, solitariness, the denial of communality. The sectarian spirit is the direct opposite of the Church spirit.”
-Fr Georges Florovsky

May we cling to the Church, that the Spirit of God who is in her may rid our hearts of a sectarian spirit. For, Truth is not a fragile thing.

Truth is absolute.

So I choose to stop rejecting her. I choose to stop being my own God and making up my own truth. I choose radical obedience to the Truth. I choose to stop running.

 

This is the Church.

 

Here there is hurt. Here there is healing.

 

We need to love her ripped and bleeding.

 

You ran well. Who hindered you from obeying the truth? This persuasion does not come from Him who calls you. A little leaven leavens the whole lump. I have confidence in you, in the Lord, that you will have no other mind; but he who troubles you shall bear his judgment, whoever he is.
Galatians 5:7-10

 

 

To the hurt, 

Please know that healing is not a momentary, glorious event. It is hard, it is long, and it is a process. While these words are truths I believe in, there are days that it still hurts so much and I lose hope, thinking I am right back where I started. Healing is a journey, may we walk this long road together.

 

Check out Part II

Makrina
About me

<p>They call me Makrina (Greek for “makarios”) meaning to be blessed/happy, and I definitely think I am both! I grew up amongst rolling hills and sheep, in a small town in Scotland, but I'm currently living in London. If I'm not around, you'll probably find me dancing on the red soil of Zambia, with a people who stole my heart, or on the other side of the Atlantic. I love to travel and meet new people (yes, I'm that girl who talks to you while you’re trying to sleep on a plane) I think humans are an incredibly beautiful work of art, like a piece of poetry waiting to be heard, learned from, cherished and loved. And like all art, there is a depth beneath the surface that I desire to see and know in every soul I meet.</p> <p>I am obsessed with words, the power of the spoken word, the written word and even the unspoken word. Writing helps me explore the chaos of my own thoughts; it forces me to be vulnerable, making me face the truth without running. So I write to give a voice to all that is within me, and I share my words with hope that others may find their own voice too. </p> <p>Sometimes it is the fear of what we may discover that cripples us from seeking to know the depth of our own heart, from finding our own voice. Because what if we discover darkness? Who will love that dark? And it is because of this fear that we hide our stories, not allowing ourselves to be known by others. But I met a love that boldly runs his gentle hands along the broken dark of my story, and calls me lovely still. It is this love that compels me to live fully: to relentlessly pursue the story of others so that in a world of fear and rejection, hearts may be known. </p> <p>For I believe that to be known is to be loved. </p> <p>Isaiah 61:1-3 </p>

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4 Comments

Karim Hanna
Reply January 22, 2016

Amen Makrina.
beautiful words. May Christ strengthen our Mother, the Church.
Truth is absolute!

Laura
Reply January 22, 2016

You always write alarming things, Makrina, and by that I mean writing in a way (and about topics) that call us *unapologetically* to wake up, and I can't imagine the courage it takes to do that, to sound the alarm. Thank you.

    Makrina
    Reply February 7, 2016

    Thank you Laura. You are right, it is time to wake up - I have snoozed through this for too long! If all we have is each other to wade through this life, then we must sound the alarm and be accountable to one another.

    Let's rise together, find healing together and learn to love the Church together.

    With joy & love

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