It’s interesting how overweight and smoking doctors can still heal you, isn’t it? By all means, if anyone knows the dangers of obesity and smoking, it’d be them right? But despite their problems, they can still lead you on a path towards health, treat your sickness, and prescribe the right medicine.
Sometimes in Christianity, we think that we have to have it all together before we help someone else walk through spiritual healing. Someone comes to us asking for help, but we’re afraid to offer it because we feel too belittled by our own problems. Even more so, we feel like a hypocrite.
“How do I get you out of your crap when I’m still stuck in mine?”
Well here’s some good news for you: we all have crap. Pastors included. And it’s a shame that we would be unwilling to help others because we’re too ashamed of ourselves.
The beauty of groups like Alcoholics Annonymous and Celebrate Recovery is that a bunch of openly broken people work alongside each other. They are open to helping each other even when they themselves are falling apart. They all have the same (or similar) problem. Some of them have achieved sobriety, while others are still stuck in relapse. But they offer whatever help they can provide to each other regardless of where they are at. Some even often ask for advice from those who are doing worse than they are, which is healing to both.
I suppose the old adage is true: you can’t give someone something you don’t have, hence why not just anyone can be a sponsor—hence why not just anyone can be a doctor! But our brokenness does not mean we are incapable of helping each other, loving each other, and generally guiding each other towards Jesus.
My fear is more so for those with a plank in their eye—unable to see or admit their own brokenness but willing to offer advice to others, even though Biblically, the others are better off with only a spec in their eye. Pride is a pharisaical and dangerous attribute to wield at someone.
When you’re truly unable to help someone, lead them to someone who can. But don’t belittle yourself in resentment and shame and think you have nothing to add. If you’re avidly working on your brokenness, you are not as much of a hypocrite as you think.