SAM_0620

Rose Colored Glasses Shattered

Deborah Stollery

   If you hang around church enough (it won’t matter the denomination, but my frame of reference is Roman Catholic), you’ll soon discover the rose-colored glasses through which you were viewing those who work there broken on the floor.  It’s even worse for those who hear the Lord calling them to serve his beloved church, who say yes, and who head into that work with those rose-colored glasses on. You know who you are if you’ve had this experience…

    You naively and open-heartedly started working, believing all those around you were also there as a response to a call from the Lord.  You were sure that your colleagues, and for sure the pastor and the staff, were followers of Jesus, truly committed to the work, the journey of faith, to leading others to encounter the Risen Lord.   And then it happened…

   The “it” might be a series of small incidences, one large experience or, the “it” might be hearing about a pattern of behaviors that hurt others from those who have been hurt.  Whatever the combination of events, there’s a moment when those glasses shatter and they cannot ever again be repaired. You see the truth more clearly: the church’s leaders and her people are sinful and broken.  Some are not healthy or suited for the work. Others are hiding from their personal demons and pretending integration and respectability. Many have never really encountered Jesus in an personal way. Smashed—rose-colored glasses—gone.

   So now what?  Some simply walk away from what they thought was a call from the Lord, certain they must have misunderstood and sure they are ill-equipped to stay in that milieu.  Some stay, but they armor up. They are machine-like in their ability to get things done. But there’s no heart, no spirit, no love, no joy. Some however, stay and they stay because they are courageous.  The Spirit’s gift of courage enables them to remain.

    Courage.  It’s a virtue…the Catholic Church calls it a cardinal virtue, meaning that it makes other virtues possible.  Yep. Courage makes it possible to continue to try new things, to trust, have confidence in others and be open to change.  Courage makes it possible to know truth, to speak truth as you raise difficult issues and to speak Jesus into the room.

    But how do you get this courage?  How do you develop that gift of the Holy Spirit?  ConSpirita Consulting Network can help you develop three particular sets of skills that when developed and used, develop and sustain courage.  Head to our website for more: www.conspirita.com.  

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