SUNDAY SERVICE TIME & LOCATION:
The Grid Church meets in The Fox Hole in Lincoln Square (2444 W. Montrose Ave. Chicago, IL 60625) || Look for The Grid Church flags and signs.
11am | FREE street parking | 2 blocks south of the Lincoln Square Brown Line.
I grew up in a family that was dysfunctional (to say the least). My mom loved the Lord and my dad loved alcohol and beating us more than just about anything else in life. My mom, myself and my siblings were often the recipients of my dad’s drunken wrath. When my dad wasn’t drunk (which was rare, but did happen occasionally), he was actually my hero. I loved the way he walked, talked, behaved, played with me, etc. I wanted to be like him; what kid doesn’t want to be like their hero. The amazing thing about hero idolizing is the second your hero fails you, your world crumbles. I was able to look past my dad’s abuse, his drunkenness, his anger, his wrath, his resentment, the bitterness, the rage, the idolization of the “bottle”, the battering of my mom, and the wreckage of myself and my siblings all because he was my hero. Until...
I remember it clearly: I was 12; just returned from a church trip, my best friend’s mom took me home. We pulled up to the front of my house. Just as I was about to get out of her van, she stopped me and said, “David, you need to be aware of something before you walk inside.” I knew what that meant: my dad beat my mom again...but nothing could prepare me for what came next...”your dad is gone; he’s in jail now. He got drunk, your parents got in a fight, and your dad starting beating your mom and he tried to kill her. Jason,” (my brother) “walked in to find your dad beating your mom, he ran to a neighbor’s house and called the police. Your dad is not coming back.” I wept. I slowly walked to my front door where my beaten, bruised and battered mom met me...we simply hugged each other and cried. That was the day my world changed. I realized my hero was a man I didn’t even know. I realized my hero failed me, abandoned me and showed me what was truly important to him. This then led me to my years of rebellion against God and my family and years of resentment, bitterness and anger that would follow me into college and into my relationship with the woman I would eventually marry. I believed the lie that I was destined to be the man I wanted to model my life after (my dad). I believed I would be an angry drunk and that I was destined to repeat the pattern I saw destroy my family. I believed I was destined to be the man I eventually came to despise...yet ultimately, forgive.
After years of believing the lie that I too would eventually follow in the footsteps of my dad, I was met by the love of my Heavenly Father who showed me a love I never knew existed. I was in Bible College, dating my future wife, angry, bitter, violent, filled with hatred and the voice of my Heavenly Daddy said, “By my grace, you will not be the man you hate. It’s time to forgive, move forward and be the man I’ve called you to be; it’s time to release your dad of this debt.” Again, I wept. I pretended as though my earthly dad was sitting in that room; this time, rather than yelling and cursing him, I forgave him for the laundry list of items I had tattooed on my heart. I released of him of the debt I thought he owed me. I learned what forgiveness meant that night.
The bible often talks about the “family” of God. When people hear the word family, a myriad of thoughts and emotions flood their minds. For me, it meant nothing but hatred, betrayal, violence, anger, destruction, and the opposite of peace. That’s the enemy’s plan. If he can attack and destroy the very thing we’re to hold so dear, he can ultimately destroy us. Whether you come from a traditional looking family with a dad, mom, sibling, etc, or a non-traditional family that perhaps has been met with nothing but pain, we want you to know the enemy will stop at nothing to destroy you and your family. If he can come in and destroy what you hold dear, or further destroy what is already “broken”, he can then claim victory over you. However, God has called Dads to be spiritual leaders and heroes, Moms to be leaders, prayer warriors and heroes, and siblings to be confidants and friends. God wants to take what is “whole” and continue perfecting it so as to be an example of the perfect family we can all belong to. He also wants to take what is broken and scattered and seemingly destroyed and bring restoration and healing so that ultimately all may come to find they have a place in the family of God.
Our prayer is that all may come to find this same hope that I found through the local church.