Pouring Ketchup: HURT Stories Between HOPE.
When hurt imposes its crabby will on our lives, many of us lock up the scars in our “private journals.” We write down stuff that is for our eyes only. It’s a safe place to hide our fears, failures, and frustrations with ourself, our friends, and even God. Journals are never meant to be read to the world, because if we did, they would reveal who we really are. Nobody really wants to undress their soul in front of others, to be made fun of—me included. Somewhere behind the halleluiahs, praise the Lords, and God is good stuff, there is this real place that only our journals have enough grace to accept. It’s a place where 1+1 doesn’t equal 2. It’s a place where you mix red and blue and get gray. It’s a place where you are mad at God and feel He’s mad at you. That’s what journals hold, the stories of our lives—not the way we always want them but the way they really are. When God invited me to write a book exposing “my journal” to the world, I politely rejected Him. Okay, not really politely. I balked, “There is no way I am ever going to reveal what I spent a lifetime concealing. God, I’m a pastor and these stories don’t make me look good; as you know, some don’t even make me look like a Christian. God, how about you and I make a deal? On my forty-seventh book, I will let the world snoop around in my journal, but not my first.” I refused to hand over the key to my journal, knowing God would just blab it to the whole world. “I will not write a book that makes me look way more human than holy.” That all changed one day when five strangers walked into McDonald’s and tried pouring ketchup ...
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