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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Obedience (01/31/05)

TITLE: Get Real
By Jessica Schmit


Hi. I want to talk to you all about something. Something that will probably make you uncomfortable, maybe even angry. But isnít it time? Isnít it time for the comfort walls to come crashing before us? I might only be 20 years old, but Iíve seen a lot for a 20 year old girl. Iíve seen the lies, the bitterness, the un forgiveness, the hypocrisy and all the cover ups. Iíve seen it in you. Yeah, this church. Why do we do this? Why do we try to cover up our failures, our dreams, our convictions, all for the sake of what? Tradition? Rejection? Whatís stopping us from taking the plunge out of the deep waters of denial and embracing our failures, our times of dryness. What stops you from experiencing truth? We have the power to live a godly life, but every day we all make choices which donít reflect walking in the power and authority of God. Then what happens? We fall and we look around and hope no one saw us. We think to ourselves, ďIf anyone saw me fall, my testimony of Godís goodness wonít be real to others. ďI wonít be able to sing on the worship teamĒ ďIíll walk shamefully into the church because I know what others around me will be saying.Ē Well, you know what. That might be right. You might finally come forth and expose the truth in your secret life and people may be shocked, repelled. You might lose your spot on the worship team, but who cares? Who cares. Every time we hide our failures from others eyes, weíre exhibiting a false identity of who we truly are. Do you think thatís inspiring to watch? No. Do you know how many youth in here and all over this nation are crying out for truth, for someone to step up and be real. To show that they struggle with their walk with God. That they donít always walk in the power they were given. Weíre tire of the slogans, of the prettiness. Or is it just me? Is it just me who struggles and loses with temptation? Is it just me who loses the fights against bitterness and hatred and anger and jealousy? You see the more I see others quickly getting up off the ground, hoping no one saw them, the more I think, ďI must do the same thingĒ. But you know what, Iím tired of that. Iím tired of running away, of pretending. I may be the only one in this church who will get up and say something like this, but Iím fine with that. You see I serve a God of power, a righteous and amazing God. A God of truth. God never hid his feelings, his frustrations and his anger. Why do we feel the urging need to do so? How can hope ever come to the people of this nation if we are all thinking ďOh, good! No one saw me fall down that time.Ē I want people to see what I do when I fall down, because thereís hope in that. You see, I reach out to the hand thatís extended to me. The hand of Jesus, the hand of hope, of light of amazing grace and love. Every time we try to get up ourselves weíre blocking others to the view of what can happen in our lives. Weíre blocking the view of love, of grace and hope. If weíre constantly hiding, how will anyone be encouraged? Look, I know many of you are thinking. ďSheís so young, she has no idea of what sheís talking about.Ē You might be thinking that Iím a heretic, an extremist or maybe way too liberal in my thinking, but Iím only following what the God of you and I, has put in my heart to say to this congregation. My challenge to you is this. Stop pretending to be fine when youíre not. Stop hiding. Adam and Eve didnít get anywhere when they ran from God. He still exposed them. Iím not saying that we need to come up here and confess each and every sin to every one around us that would just be depressing. Iím asking, pleading with you all, that you would be authentic, no longer luke warm, no longer hiding from what you believe, not ignoring the questions you may have. I guarantee you that you arenít the only one who faces the struggles and loses the fights. Thatís one of the wonderful things about a church body, weíre here to encourage and strengthen each other in their times of struggles and weaknesses. Isnít it time to obey the call He has on each of our lives? Weíre all in this walk together. When will you break down those comfort walls and walk in complete truth. Itís time.

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Member Comments
Member Date
Karri Compton02/07/05
Praise God for your fire for Him! You raised some excellent points. Just a few suggestions, though. Although I can appreciate the strength of your feelings (I have a tendency to do the same thing, only I keep it in my journal), this came across as a preachy tirade, and many people will turn off after the first few sentences. Also, group your paragraphs together and double space in between them. It will be much easier to read. God bless you, and keep writing.
Eli Espinoza02/08/05
The biggest thing that seperates the youth from the elder is not age; it is communication. You write good as a 20 year old girl, but I bet you write better as a 20 year old woman.
Jessica Schmit02/08/05
This article was written as a monologue, not a short story, "inspiring" paragraph etc...to my church. I wrote it because recently I discovered someone over me in leadership, had been lying to me as well as our the congregation. God's good though and he's moving through his life as well as my family. I just want people to understand that the more you cover sin up, the more difficult it becomes to get out of sin. That leader thought he was doing the best thing, by living two lives, but in the end it hurt hundreds of people. I hope no one was too angry by the content. But Iíve been personally challenged to live authentically. To be obedient to the call of honesty in all things.

Amber Chance
Crista Darr02/08/05
The definition of a hypocrite is "an actor". Do not lose sleep over the fact that someone might be angry with the truth. The Pharisees must have been angry when Jesus called them a "brood of vipers". Your story challenged me to be real. Yes, this is how we help others and ourselves. I agree with the other comments posted.
Sally Hanan02/10/05
Monologues have paragraphs too. I agree with your points. Our church has gone through a lot because of unconfessed sin.
Cheri Hardaway 02/11/05
I have seen unconfessed sin tear up people's lives also; may we all learn to live truthfully and honestly in love with one another. Thank you.

God bless,