Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Great Anecdote on the Blessings of Mutual Congregational Accountability

Yesterday through our local NPR station (listening to NPR is a regular form of espionage that I practice) I became acquainted with the story of Delsie Bailey. Ms. Bailey is a sophomore at the University of North Carolina–Chapel Hill who became pregnant in high school. She is a devout Christian and the daughter of an elder in her church. Although the blog of the organization with which she volunteers refers to her as "a huge proponent of using protection," as you will hear in the audio of the interview, her message to teens is to abstain. WARNING: Her story is the third feature on the audio, and you'll have to skip down past the halfway point to get to her poignant account.

But the best part of the story, in my estimation, has nothing to do with premarital sex or pregnancy out of wedlock. Ms. Bailey describes in the interview the day in which she stood before her 400-500 member congregation, admitted her sinfulness, and informed them of her pregnancy. Many would fear that she would face a barrage of judgmental condemnation, but you've got to hear her description of what happened next.

Maybe ignoring sin and its destruction in the lives of our fellow believers and church members isn't the loving thing to do at all. Maybe we deprive one another of something important that we all need when we cover up our failures.

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