WATCH THIS SHORT VIDEO FIRST with Heather Nelson and her grandpa, evangelical icon, Chuck Swindoll.

This week’s article is by Highlander and director of Khesed Wellness, Heather Nelson.

Glennon Doyle Melton posted on her Instagram a couple weeks ago a quote by an unknown author that said, “You are not required to set yourself on fire to keep other people warm.” This is often what happens in the moments we feel disconnected – we set ourselves on fire by becoming small or returning shame with shame. We often further disconnection when we feel disconnected.

I asked my grandfather, Evangelical Icon Chuck Swindoll, to do a live event with me this fall. An event about our connection beyond what we each represent in the world. I couldn’t imagine a more relevant event in our society. We are more aware than ever of all that disconnects us.

Each ticket sold for this live event would cover the cost of a counseling session at Khesed, re-connecting families throughout Colorado. The ticket sales make Khesed’s fall and winter operations possible. It’s a win all-around.

Then after the release of our first video promotion where I identify as a queer woman, he cancelled. There were accusations that he’s gone soft in his theology around homosexuality. And just like that, it was gone.

My deepest fear came true: being fully who I am in the world is wrong. If I don’t agree or I’m not agreeable, I will be left. Shame and smallness swelled in me.

Disconnection interrupted, like it does in all of our families. We often get lost in the bonfire of disconnection and miss our opportunity to jump over it together, dance around it hand-in-hand, and even sit through it until the fire becomes embers and we remember. Yet, becoming more human through disconnection and inviting new layers of connection, may be the very heartbeat of the gospel and the life in life…

Nothing but love,

Listen to Heather’s recent message at Denver Community Church. Her sermon is from 20:52–56:15.