I was wrong.
There… I’ve said it and I can’t take it back.
I have almost finished the best book I have read about relationships… Which is not a small thing to say because I’ve read quite a few.
It’s also a painful thing to say because it is a book written by someone I was prejudiced against.
I have already acknowledged that I was biased against Bethel church, so it was a bit of a shock to find such balanced, helpful and confronting words penned by one of their leadership team.
Danny Silk has written two books that I now highly recommend.
I’ve already written about the Culture of Honor, but as I now come to the end of Keep your Love on, I find that I am even more challenged.
What I have found so instructive about both books is that they paint a picture of what healthy relationships look like… in detail.
I love the training from Fusion because it is so practical… teaching people how to listen, give feedback, manage conflict and avoid dramas. Silk’s work paints a picture of how all those skills work together to create healthy culture and healthy relationships.
If I am to be honest, part of me would like to write the Bethel church off as “airy fairy” (Australian for not very grounded in reality), but these books show that the leadership of that church have been doing the hard work of naming what it means for people to actually be in healthy relationship.
As I start to acknowledge my prejudice, and announce my “discovery” of Danny Silk, I find that many people have known about him and valued his writing for many years now. Turns out i’m just slow.
The timing of discovering the books has coincided with our sermon series on Ephesians 4, where the Apostle Paul makes it clear that the whole purpose of the church is to reflect the wisdom and nature of the God in whom all things hold together.
Paul’s basic premise is that we are all created as unique, however we reflect the wisdom of God in the way we live our lives together.
As I think about it it shouldn’t really surprise me that Bethel have had to work on how to relate healthily to one another, because the more charismatic edge of the church has a strong focus on the unique gifting of God for each person… which creates a very big headache unless relationships are managed well.
So… I was wrong in my prejudice.
Last night I discovered that I have been wrong about something else, and something that has had significantly more negative impact in my life.
I haven’t been very good at keeping the right boundaries in place.. and I have sometimes named my mistakes “ministry”, and felt good about my sacrifice.
It’s not good to have to write that. Continue reading