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Category Archives for "faith"

Oct 23

Why I Still Trust God When Shame Feels Heavy

By Lindsey Austin | Best of Messy Grace , faith , Family , Messy Grace , Parenting

I vow to let go of past failures and strengthen what remains so I can be a better version of myself each day. Not let go of them completely, as in forget them, but take my fear, shame, mistakes and misgivings, and put them under my feet.

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How to Help Pastors with Suicidal Thoughts
Sep 23

How to Help Pastors with Suicidal Thoughts

By Steve Austin | Anxiety , Best of Messy Grace , Depression , faith , Mental Health , Recovery , Recovery from a Suicid...

​​I nearly died by suicide on September 21, 2012​.The truth is, I’m not alone. Each day around the world, approximately 2,000 people believe they have reached the end of their rope, and die by suicide. And for each person who dies, another twenty-five will attempt. Yes, there are even pastors with suicidal thoughts.You might think […]

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Why I Think Hope is the Thing with Claws
Sep 15

Why I Think Hope is the Thing with Claws

By Steve Austin | Best of Messy Grace , Current Events , faith , Mental Health , Spirituality , stress management

“We who have run for our very lives to God have every reason to grab the promised hope with both hands and never let go. It’s an unbreakable spiritual lifeline, reaching past all appearances right to the very presence of God where Jesus, running on ahead of us, has taken up his permanent post as […]

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Why I Believe Love is Love
May 18

Why I Believe Love is Love

By Steve Austin | Best of Messy Grace , faith , lgbtq , Messy Grace , The Struggle With Church

It’s who you are that counts. Your worship to God is the way you live. A few years ago, I would have ignored, shunned, and been disgusted by the scene that unfolded that night at the gas pump. The journey toward authentic faith became real for me in that moment.
The most effective way to destroy prejudice is by sharing tangible love, one opportunity or person at a time. If my Sunday morning song service doesn’t match my response to a gay guy at the gas pump, I’m in trouble.

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I stopped praying months ago. Here's what happened.
May 10

I stopped praying months ago. Here’s what happened.

By Steve Austin | Ask Steve Austin , Best of Messy Grace , faith , Messy Grace , Millennials , Recovery , Religious Recovery , The Struggle With Church

“My own words echo back down, Like rain on my head, And I wonder if God is even listening, or if He cares.  If She is even there.” -from my journalPhoto by Amaury Gutierrez on UnsplashEverything is prayer.The truth is, I haven’t prayed in months. I wonder if it’s all glass up there. Cries for help, for deeper […]

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9 Ways to Know if You're in an Oppressive Church
Mar 15

9 Ways to Know if You’re in an Oppressive Church

By Steve Austin | Best of Messy Grace , faith , Messy Grace , Recovery , Religious Recovery , The Struggle With Church

For many people I know, Christianity has been boiled down to morality. It has become a way to ensure you skip eternal damnation. It’s a list of do’s and don’ts, but there is no real freedom. Many Christians have traded the yoke of slavery for the yoke of religion, and both are dead.

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How I Found God in All the Wrong Places
Aug 26

How I Found God in All the Wrong Places

By Steve Austin | Best of Messy Grace , faith , Messy Grace , Recovery , Religious Recovery

I didn’t plan for Jesus to meet me a few years back, in a little coffee shop inside our church, dressed just like my Grandpa. Jesus, with a raggedy mustache, a three-day beard, and coffee stains on his plaid button-down. I didn’t plan to meet Jesus that way—that day. I didn’t plan for Him to rescue me from my own bad theology and church hurts. I didn’t even know He cared.
And I never expected what happened next.

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Meet Steve Austin: The Pastor Who Nearly Died by Suicide
Jun 22

Pastor to Psych Ward: Recovery from a Suicide Attempt is Possible.

By Steve Austin | Best of Messy Grace , Depression , faith , Mental Health , Messy Grace , Recovery , Recovery from a Suicid... , This is My Story (series)

My clients were concerned. When they couldn’t reach me, they called first my wife, and then the hotel. I was lying on my back, unconscious, covered in vomit, when the police and EMT’s found me. They thought it was a murder scene. Vomit covered the bed and the floor. It had projected up the wall behind me, and coated a massive picture that hung over the bed. Apparently the pink Benadryl pills, along with the tens of thousands of milligrams of other medication I took, created the effect of blood. I had been unconscious for a solid ten hours by then.

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Discrimination is Alive and Well in the American Church
Jun 07

How American Christians Use the Bible to Keep Discrimination Alive

By Steve Austin | Best of Messy Grace , faith , lgbtq , The Struggle With Church

If your God is love but your church won’t accept the disenfranchised, those on the fringe, the forgotten, something doesn’t line up.
And as we continue to speak from a place of ignorance, our neighbors are drowning in confusion and judgment.

Maybe it’s time to loose the death grip on our precious moral stances and open our hands to those around us who are hurting and longing for love and acceptance. Now, more than ever, we should love the person in front of us. Lives are changed through relationship rather than rule-keeping. This is the essence of the message of Jesus.

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