Venturing to wholeness takes a village. We surrender to Jesus but stumble in route until we find walking partners who help us fix on Jesus and His narrow way.
No doubt Jesus is our new dignity as men and women. He IS radical wholeness—the One who takes us back to the garden then launches us out to personify God’s image, male and female.
But we need more than truthful concepts: we need community. Relational problems—stubborn and deep—require relational solutions. Jesus makes His way clear and walkable through His members.
Desert Stream/Living Waters is founded on that truth. Of course, we need spiritual devotion. We need wise, one-on-one guides. And sacraments and unseen saints and mission and worship sets. Still more, we need holy earthy peers a few steps ahead of us who ‘get’ our stumbling blocks and faulty footing and help us trod the path we must. For us, that track is the Living Waters ‘village’, a pilgrimage towards chastity that any faith community can surround.
Countercultural communities like Living Waters are always helpful for growth in Christlikeness. But yesterday’s shame and fear-based approach to LGBTQ+ reality has evolved into applause for the ‘courage’ it takes to ‘out’ oneself anywhere on the rainbow spectrum. Our culture urges persons to misidentify their sexuality! And lauds them for it. Living Waters is no longer just helpful—it is essential.
The best thinkers on sources of sexual vulnerabilities point to how our unique personalities interact with family-of-origin AND the culture around us—what we discover ‘out there’ about the meaning of sexual desire and ‘gender identities’, about shame and support, about the new normal of porn addiction which mutates desire, and virtual communities that empower misbegotten choices.
I believe that culture now vies with family of origin in shaping a child’s sexual self-perception. An iphone offers each child a host of terrible ways for resolving inner emptiness and conflict. We as the Church must activate countercultural communities centered on Jesus that have empowered truth and insight, peer support, and Mercy that extends deeper than fake solutions.
Living Waters is a healing village that vaccinates its members with Divine Mercy until one is resistant to worldly fixes. Young men like Andrew Franklin are forging such villages in urban areas like Seattle Washington. He and his family recently moved there and are gathering persons throughout his church to walk together on a protected, healing path to chastity. Through Living Waters, Andrew’s whole church now has a unified, practical, and utterly orthodox approach to sexual brokenness. They are becoming a healing community, fused with grace and truth.
To learn more about Andrew Franklin, his hopeful history, and pastoral approach, I commend to you a new book he wrote entitled ‘Created for Love.’ Excellent.
To hasten your effort to forge a healing community where you worship, check out one of our Living Waters Trainings.
We must do more than wring our hands and lament a lapsed culture. Why complain when we can act? Do your part to create a counterculture. Join the village people. See you at a Living Waters Training, ‘Created for Love’ in hand.