Earlier this month on a Sunday evening I went to church. Now in some parts of the country this would not be too unusual. As a child my husband went to church every Wednesday evening Sunday morning and Sunday evening. However, the church I went to a few weeks ago was not what most people would call your typical fellowship. It was held in a lecture hall at a secular university and the pastor was a former pornography producer.
Triple X church dot com answered the invitation of a local congregation to come to our city and share their story. I say I went to church because for the first time in months, maybe even years, I felt the presence of God. No, people did not fall on the ground or break out in holy laughter. At the same time, lives were impacted, some may have been irrevocably changed.
Donny Pauling, the guest speaker, started out the evening telling his audience he was not there to tell us we were going to hell if we watched, bought, starred in, or produced pornography. He was only there to tell us what the industry was really like, what it was actually doing, and that there was a way out if we wanted to take it. I am sure some in the audience were a little unnerved that he talked as though we were all involved, personally, the way he had been.
Mr. Pauling’s own story was compelling. The son of a pastor he rebelled against the religiosity of his father’s congregation. He confessed that he took pleasure in telling them (whenever he ran into them) that he was a porn producer. But then something strange started to happen. XXXChurch.com started showing up at trade shows–not outside the venue with big protest signs but rather inside at a booth. The Triple X people handed out Bibles that said Jesus Loves Porn Stars on the front and were actually nice to the “girls”, even helping them to reapply their make-up during bathroom breaks. I could continue to tell Donny’s story but I would rather you check it out yourself.
I simply want to say I wish I could go to church like that every week. Rather than tired interpretations of familiar Bible passages, I would like to hear the personal testimony of somebody like Donny who, when he was finally ready to “get out”, called on a person from Triple X. That “pastor” was at Donny’s door the very next day to walk him through. With such a testimony I would have something to sing about, a reason to dance. I am hungry for Church to be a celebration of what the Lord has done. When was the last time for you?