It doesn't feel special and it may not be special. But I am leaving my husband and my 5 sleeping children to go on a trip. I am going to and Exodus conference-hopefully to learn. I am doing it for 3 young men in particular who, by holding a special place in my oldest daughters heart, have become special to me. These 3 young men, in varying degrees, are questioning their manhood. It is with the hope that I can bring something back for those 3 young men that I go. They are not ready to go for themselves yet, so I go for them. It's also for two men who aren't so young anymore. Two men who because of their gentle caring ways and love for each other, were able to reach out to me and be MEN in my life, while not being men in my life. They helped me get back on my feet when I had to leave my first husband with a 15 month old child because he couldn't be a real man and stop hitting and verbally abusing me. Out of my love for these two men, I tried to witness to them the only way I knew how-judgementally-and in doing so, pushed them so far away that I have no idea what became of them. It is for them, and for all of the men and women who feel isolated and shut out by a church that can't seem to see them as human. Are they sinners? Yes, but so am I. So are we all.
I don't have any more time, but I would like to ask that anyone who reads this pray for the 3 young men J, G, and R. And while I don't even know if the other two are still alive, keep James and Paul in your prayers too-that someone who DOES know how to reach out to them, will.