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I thought I was strange till ekklesia showed me I'm normal

Too many people feel like Alejandro Jodorowsky, a Chilean-French filmmaker. He said: "I am not a normal person. I am living in a normal body, but my mind is not normal."

That's how I used to feel. I grew up emotionally insecure and self-conscious, believing that I was strange and abnormal -- never feeling like I really fit in with "normal" people. Then I started meeting with a non-denominational group of Christians that met something like a support group (what the Greek New Testament calls ekklesia).

As people opened up and shared in the group, I saw that they had the same "abnormal" insecurities and thoughts that I did. (Comedy writer Joe Ancis put it this way: "The only normal people are the ones you don't know very well.) Soon I begin to feel a real sense of oneness and unity with them.

The truth is that all human beings are basically the same. The Good News Bible puts it this way: "Every test that you have experienced is the kind that normally comes to people." (1 Corinthians 10:13)

The problem is that most of us try to get other people to believe that we are better off than we really are. We're all weird. Some people just hide their weirdness more than others do.

We usually don't want other people to know how messed up we are and how much we struggle. However, Christians are told to "walk in the light" -- to open up and be completely honest about what we are going through, so that we can encourage and help one another.

You are not strange or alone. It's normal to struggle and mess up in various degrees. We need to open up and lovingly help each another get back on track. That's the key to unity and healing in the body of Christ. "We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to our own way; and the Lord has laid on Him (Jesus) the iniquity of us all." (Isaiah 53:6)

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