For the months of February through April we’ve invited several people to give you a peek into
the new directions God has called The Barnabas Center. We hope these directions will be
encouraging and that you’ll resonate with the needs and hopes that are being shared. In May
we’ll be back online with our usual thematic blog posts.
I was something special. After all, I had a pretty good job, I usually did the “right thing” and I was nice to people. In a nutshell, the complete package! And if you don’t believe me here’s the proof: I won a “Good Citizenship” award and was voted “Best All-Around.” Clearly, I was a bonafide “good guy!”
Enter marriage, stage left.
Cindi, my new bride, had no idea what she was getting into (and neither did I). I was more interested in my “good guy” image than just about anything else and would go to great lengths to protect it, even at the expense of her well-being. And she just wanted to be loved and adored by me. Can you say “train-wreck-a-comin!”
Well, it didn’t take long before Cindi needed to talk to someone. So she sought out a counselor. I was supportive of this for two reasons: (1) She was obviously the problem, so hopefully she could go get “fixed” and (2) I didn’t have to go! Yes, we were having “issues”, but given that I’m a “good guy” it was obvious where the problem resided. I was just glad she was getting the help she needed.
So Cindi went off to counseling and I kept orchestrating my world to play the good guy. At some point, the counselor asked Cindi to bring me in with her. Now I was in a conundrum: I had NO plans to go to counseling, but if I was going to keep the good guy image going, I probably should attend. After all, maybe if we work together the counselor and I can help my poor wife. So, I went. While the counselor did not know me, she KNEW me! She knew that I had been orchestrating my self-centered world to insure that I always looked good, and to cover the mess below the surface. But now Cindi was miserable, my marriage was struggling and my cover-up was losing its cover! I’ll never forget the counselor turning to me and saying this bone-chilling phrase: “Wow, she has really messed up your world hasn’t she!” I had been caught! I could no longer hide. It was the beginning of a long journey for me.
Many people are like me. It feels way too threatening to even set foot in a counselor’s office. But, most of those same people, would welcome a coffee meeting at Starbucks or a lunch at Harpers. In our Vision 2020 plans we want to be relevant to these precious folks. We want to “meet them where they are” and if Starbucks is “where they are” then we want to be there too.
To this end, a key component of our 2020 strategy is to add three Community Discipleship Ministers. Their role, in large part, will be to come alongside those that would find it difficult to venture into a counseling office but would desire to talk to someone. These three Community Discipleship Ministers will be “out there” having Gospel-laden, hope-filled conversations with those hurting in life.
To learn more about the Vision 2020 campaign please watch this brief video:
Breck and Cindi have been married almost 25 years and live in Charlotte where they have raised their two children Breck Jr. (23) and Blair (20). He’s a “people junkie” who currently serves on the Barnabas Center Board.