From time to time, I write about my involvement with The Mat, a ministry for freedom and recovery sponsored by Quest Community Church in Lexington. I have been involved in The Mat since 2007, and we are celebrating our 6th Anniversary this Friday, June 10. As you can see if you click on the link above, The Mat covers everything from dealing with addictive behaviors to helping people become more free in their relationship with Jesus. I first started by attending the Men’s Integrity group and now help facilitate groups for men. Recently, I’ve been going to the Wild At Heart special series, which is based on the book by John Eldridge—it’s been great.
As I’ve been reading the seemingly endless headlines about celebrities and public figures crashing and burning—everybody from Lindsay Lohan to Arnold Schwarzenegger to Anthony Weiner—I feel as much empathy for them as I do outrage or dismay. They are just public examples of how broken and fallible we are as human beings. I read a quote from one of Weiner’s constituents: “how can someone so smart be so stupid?” Well, I’ve done some pretty stupid things myself, and I consider myself at least semi-smart. The irony of our digital age is that we think we can live these anonymous online lives that have no connection with our face-to-face lives (James 1:6-8 reminds us that double-mindedness is nothing new; we just have a new, technological, way of practicing it). But when the proverbial ____ hits the fan, it’s a fan that blows across the worldwide web. So much for secret behavior, huh?
If Anthony Weiner or Arnold Schwarzenegger lived where I live, I’d want them to know there’s a safe, judgment-free place where they could bring the broken pieces of their lives and let God begin to put them back together again. I’d also tell them there’s a group for their wives to begin working through their unresolved hurt and anger, which left untreated can do as much damage as the initial betrayal. To me, there’s no greater joy or sense of amazement than watching someone come through the door with absolutely no hope and then to see God create hope in them through real healing.
By the way, for those who read this and DO live in the Lexington area, I want to extend a special invitation to join us this Friday for our 6th Anniversary celebration. We will be cooking out at 6:00 and then having a great time of worship at 7:00, where people will be sharing stories of redemption and where we will be describing the kinds of groups that will be running over the summer. Whether this is something you could use yourself or something you’d like to know more about for a friend or family member, it’s a great way to learn more about it.
See you there!