Have you ever looked at yourself in the mirror and wondered where all the time went? One day you were drinking milk and coloring in your preschool room without a care in the world, the next you are balancing checkbooks, saving for retirement, and acting as your kids’ sole and unpaid Uber driver for all their “pressing” social engagements.
I think we’ve all been there. One way or another.
And this month we are there as a ministry because XXXchurch has now turned twenty years old. Let that sink in. We’ve been doing this thing for two decades and yet, so much still needs to be done.
I remember attending our 10 year anniversary party as a newly hired part-time leader for what we now call Small Groups Online. I met a ton of people intimately involved with the ministry and remember thinking to myself that this ride was never going to end.
Yet in many ways it did.
Understand, the XXXchurch of 2002, or even 2012 is not the same XXXchurch of 2022.
- We still focus on the issues of porn, sex addiction, and sexuality.
- We still say what needs to be said, regardless of the fallout.
- We still create resources and communities where people find help and acceptance.
- Our mission has changed a bit.
- Some of the ministries and resources we once offered have been released.
- Most of the people I met at that 10 year anniversary are no longer with us.
- All of the leaders from 10 years ago are now doing other things.
And today we are far more focused on creating a conversation about porn and sex than just educating people on how damaging these things are.
A lot has changed.
Over the past two decades…
- We’ve received more press and attention than most ministries will ever see in their entire lifespan. Both good and bad.
- We’ve done things and gone places many in the church would rather avoid like the plague. And sometimes we second guessed a few of those decisions if I’m being honest.
- We’ve broached conversations and topics that no one wanted to touch with a 10’ pole, only to get praised by some while receiving hate mail from others. Like this gem of a quote:
“Please DO NOT let this evil dog and pony show into your church, college or any other group function. They are spreading satan’s evil, plain and simple. They want to take your congregations straight to hell. XXXChurch wants you addicted to porn. They PROFIT FROM YOUR PAIN, NOT YOUR RECOVERY!!”
- We’ve enjoyed some incredible accomplishments and also been guilty of some epic failures and bad decisions.
- We’ve raised up and trained 100’s of leaders saying goodbye to some along the way.
- We’ve seen 1,000’s of men and women find healing and freedom in their sexual lives while also witnessing some of our closest friends succumbing to sexual compromise.
- We’ve built 1,000’s of church and ministry partnerships while also being the target for many who don’t appreciate our tone, methods, and/or message.
Yet, it’s been a wild ride and a life changing experience for those who still call this ministry their home.
And so this month we want to celebrate all that this ministry has done. The good, bad, and even ugly.
But most importantly, we want to honor the past as we look forward to the future.
Here’s to twenty years of ministry, and hopefully twenty more.
And if you want to enjoy a little throwback piece, below is the video we put out back in 2012 when we turned 10. Enjoy 🙂