I recently had a conversation with our friend Janice (who joined the podcast for a couple episodes, which you can listen to here and here) and her friend Abena on the podcast God Has Not Given. In it we talked about a wide range of Hillsong-related topics as we continue processing our own exoduses from that church and the fallout as famous leaders from their either vanish into the shadows only to reemerge untouched and ready to prey on another group of naïve parishioners or double down on their support and defense of a church that is in a tailspin (though mostly the former).

The crux of our conversation dealt with how Evangelicalism stunted all our growth—personal, creative, sexual, relational, professional. Because of the demands those churches had on our skills, we weren't able to reach into the depths of our creative potential, and for many of us, we're too burned out to try again or jump into something new. Because of the expectations placed on our lives, many of us are unable to recognize our professional worth. Because of the rules we had to live under, too many of us are delayed in understanding our sexual personhood.

Janice wrapped up the episode by pointing out how stunt is a homonym; it simultaneously means "hindered growth or development" and "a performance displaying someone's skill, dexterity, and athleticism." To get beyond our stunted growth, we essentially have to perform stunts.

Listen to the episode here or search for "God Has Not Given" on your favorite podcast app.

Nate Nakao (he/him)
Author
Nate Nakao (he/him)
Host