“Messy Heroes” (Transparency: part 1)

Some folks like traveling alone?  Not me. I cannot imagine traveling all by my lonesome to some of the places I have visited like Spanish Wells, Bahamas or Mexico. We all desire a traveling companion.

As we continue our personal journey in life, it helps to have someone to talk to and receive feedback from when we experience snags or roadblocks. I love it when famous people let their hair down and tell their raw stories from their own adventures.

In Traveling Light, devotional author Max Lucado recounts,  “By the age of eighteen I was well on my way to a drinking problem. My system had become so resistant to alcohol that a six-pack of beer had little or no impact on me. At the age of twenty, God not only saved me from hell after this life, he saved me from hell during it. Only he knows where I was headed, but I have a pretty good idea.  For that reason, part of my decision to follow Christ included no more beer. So I quit. But curiously, the thirst for beer never left. It hasn’t hounded me or consumed me, but two or three times a week the thought of a good beer sure entices me. Proof to me that I have to be careful is this-nonalcoholic beers have no appeal.  It’s not the flavor of the drink; it’s the buzz. But for more than twenty years, drinking has never been a major issue”.


When someone has been candid by sharing their testimony, I have had too many conversations with Christians who have then said “I can’t believe he did that!  I would never do that!” However, the late Michael Yaconelli sabotages their self-righteousness in his book Messy Spirituality, “The biblical writers did not edit out the flaws of its heroes.” Case in point, take Noah, who after the world flood, grew a vineyard and later got drunk and naked, evidenced in Genesis 9:20-21. Yaconelli continues, “They were men and women who could be gentle, holy, defenders of the faith one minute and insecure, mentally unstable, unbelieving, shrewd, lying, grudge-holding tyrants the next.”

I will never forget when I read the book All Is Grace, which is the memoir of the late Brennan Manning, who was a former Franciscan priest.  After I finished, I remember thinking, “So he continued speaking at Christian conferences while he fueled his alcoholism?!” I later looked in the mirror and my fingers pointed back at me.  I was guilty for my own junk even though I was quick to pounce judgment on someone who had a different sin than mine.


Paul offers some hope as found in 2 Corinthians 4:7, “We now have this light shining in our hearts, but we ourselves are like fragile clay jars, containing this great treasure. This makes it clear that our great power is from God, not from ourselves.” Do not let your flaws keep you from moving forward as God’s light shines through your flesh of clay.   


pictures courtesy of “Nelson & His Nikon” except for “I’ve Got Your Baggage” poster-unknown.

One thought on ““Messy Heroes” (Transparency: part 1)

  1. Oh my word, Nelson! This devotional is Awesome !!! Thank you for sharing this with us !!! Also, the pictures you used are perfect!

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About nelsonhaynes500words

My name is William-Nelson-Haynes. I mentioned my full name because I want to share more than just two-thirds of me. Since life is a journey, it is my hope that this blog keeps you from feeling alone. Please check out my background, education and experience in "The Writer" part of the Menu on the top left-hand corner of the home page. Other Menu items you can scroll through are the Authors who influenced me, Magazine Articles I write for Good News Magazine, the Top 15 books that affected me spiritually, and the other hobbies that also make me come alive.