Joan Reynolds

Real Faith, Real Life & Real Joy

Shell Shocked!


I was speaking with a good friend and sister in Christ today, grateful that she was yet another wounded warrior who has graced my life over the past twenty seven years. I had the vision of her as suffering a kind of post traumatic stress, having been hurt by her church a long time ago in the aftermath of a divorce from a Christian husband.

Whether we like it or not, very often some of the harshest blows to a believer have been delivered by other well meaning believers. One of the greatest sorrows I have seen is the one of someone who loves God but is terrified of His church.

My picture of her, when I met her almost twenty years ago, was of a woman who was shell shocked. It was as if she had been wandering in a mine field and was not sure where to put her foot next. I had been given her name by a man in my church, and I went to see her with her permission. Both recognizing a fellow traveler we began a friendship, albeit tentatively, that has stood the test of time and many misfortunes, because at the center of it was our mutual love of God.

She and I share a heartache for those who often go unnoticed in a church, those who may come one Sunday, only to sneak back out the way they came in. We often don’t have eyes to see those who have been hurt by other churches, perhaps even by our own. I believe it takes a person who has walked a similar path to notice the body language of that person. As much as they want to be there, they are somewhat fearful of the well-meaning of others.

I believe there is a huge calling for the wounded healers to come back to the Church right now, to give it another chance. I also  believe that the church needs to value the people that God calls there, and try to discern by the guidance of the Holy Spirit, why they might be there. I believe they do not come in their own strength(because they have been worn down), but in His, and they have a great deal to offer the church right now. I believe my friend is one of those we should listen to, because God is saying something through her story that we need to hear.

I pray that her church will not only receive her, but welcome her with open arms.

2 Comments to

“Shell Shocked!”

  1. Avatar November 12th, 2010 at 6:17 pm Darissa Says:

    Imagine my surprise when I came to read your blog and found this sweet, sweet tribute. I love you too. I want everyone to know that God sent you to save my life and has blessed our friendship even to this moment. Had you been an “ordinary” Christian I would still be wondering in the mine field. He knew only a wounded soldier could reach another wounded soul….Thank God for the misfits!

  2. Avatar November 12th, 2010 at 7:54 pm Joan Says:

    God is always economical…meaning He never wastes an opportunity. He puts us together for each of us to learn something and, if we are paying attention, there is always a blessing for both of us in the connection!
    We are both grateful and blessed, Joan

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