eyes (because maybe we are losing the art of looking each other in the eyes).
I am so for you.
Me, Whitney Putnam, I am ridiculously for you. Your dreams – for them. Can I hear
about them? Will you tell me? Your sad places – I want to know them. In what ways can
I uphold you and your family? Can we pray right now? Your hopes and longings and
quiet heart places? I want to be your cheerleader. I want to champion you. You – yes,
you – I am for you.
Several nights ago, I lost it in front of my Michael. My pastor husband who already
carries all the burdens, stared at me and I could see his heart breaking, too. Tears
poured out as I revealed my hidden places to my husband. Ultimately, it all came out. I
finally whispered the words, “I feel like my church isn’t for me. I feel like I am carrying
around this great big dream with all of its parts, hidden in my God, and some days, I feel
like I am carrying it alone.”
This is not a good feeling, friends.
My husband and I had an honest conversation (highly recommended) and I told him why
I was feeling this way. Then I told him ways I needed him to champion me (again, highly
recommended because oddly enough, my husband is not a mind reader).
As I shared this conversation with a friend the next day, she said she had no idea. In fact
she said, “Whitney, it seems like you have it all together so that’s probably why no one
ever says anything.”
Head nod. But hear this: Perceptions are often not what they seem.
As I have dug deeper into this issue, I want you to know, I love my church. I love my
people. I love how we awkwardly rub shoulders and bump into each other. We are
humans, after all. My heart bursts for our little white church on a hill next to the
But dear friends, if we love our church, we must love our people well. We must look
them in the eyes and care for them – and I’m not just talking about the ones in our
building, because bless our little hearts – God doesn’t care about our buildings. We are a
people bound by Jesus – this can be enough.
Let’s step into this place, Church. Everyone we meet: pastor, associate pastor, youth
pastor. Business man, school teacher, stay-at-home mom. No matter how they
outwardly are perceived, inwardly they have something they are wrestling with and
they might just want a pat on the back. Or a head nod. Or a hug. Maybe they want a
We need to get this right. Christians — we must be radically for each other and where
we are headed. We need to champion one another and the dreams we each hold. But
there are a few things we must understand if we are going to start being each other’s
WE ARE NOT IN COMPETITION
Girls, this is what gets us. May I just say that the cross wasn’t covered in blood for
caddiness and quiet darts being shot across the room? We are sisters — part of a
beautiful sisterhood across the country. Let’s lean in. Let’s go out to lunch with someone
we wouldn’t typically go eat with. Let’s be good listeners. And after listening, let’s make
sure we clap really loud when we see our friend move into her places. Loud, obnoxious,
cowbell claps, because if we don’t, the world will drown us out.
It’s hard to be honest when we are afraid someone won’t delicately hold our dreams.
It’s hard to spill our guts when someone might just spill and break our hearts. This is
where we must be brave. We can’t be for each other if we are not willing to live
authentically and genuinely. We have to reach in and speak to all of the places we are
wrestling through as women. We must go there. A dying world is watching how we treat
each other and it starts with being genuine humans.
If she looks like she has it all together, she doesn’t. Ask her to coffee. Look her in her
eyes. Make time for her. Tell her that you will be her friend. Then mean it and take
steps in that direction. What if we all took one friend in deeply? What if we made it our
mission to love her really well? Wouldn’t that be lovely?
THE BEST THING
If we all try to love each other well, we will be making great strides in the right direction.
Our land will be more beautiful. However, I will fail you. I will mess up, and you might
fall through the cracks of my life. This is why we must hold tight to one thing. God is
crazy for us. Let’s make sure John 3:16 never get old. The great God of the universe
wants to hold us in His arms. He sent His son to die so that we could be there.
Sweet church girls, a dying world is looking on to see how we treat each other. They are
peering into our windows, taking radical pokes and prods into our world. They are
wondering why they would even want to know Jesus and walk with Him. We get to
show them through the way we cheerlead each other. We get to show them dynamic
love by dynamically being for each other. Let’s look like this. Then people might want to
look like us.
At Imperfectly Brave, we believe this will start with prayer; gathering together, honestly
telling one another where we need God most, and then praying wildly. It’s not fancy.
None of it is fancy. There is no need to reinvent what God already gave us. Let’s just
We all have to start somewhere. So, let’s start with coffee. Wanna go? I am really good
at coffee and I want to become a better listener. Let’s do it. I’m ready to start clapping
Want more of this? Whitney Putnam believes that God is working wildly in Kansas City.
She believes that revival is coming and it will start on our knees. To be a part of this
pursuit, join us at www.imperfectlybraveweekend.com. Every woman that attends will
learn to step into her imperfectly brave life and be placed in a prayer group. The
outcome: a whole sisterhood gathered together praying for God to take back famous.
Whitney Putnam is the author and speaker of Imperfectly Brave. She is a dreamer (with
two precious little girls) and a visionary (with a pastor husband who is beyond
wonderful). They all live in Liberty (Yes! It’s the name of the city) and tend a small
church near a peacock farm. She loves spending time with God—and her laptop—on an
old sofa in her basement. Her hope, her prayer, her passion is that women everywhere
will find their imperfectly brave lives, rise up, and change the world.
Yes. You. Change the world.
For more information go to www.imperfectlybrave.com and
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