I've never aspired to start an organisation. My own self-consciousness would typically scream at me to run and hide at the thought. It's not just the logistic and operational challenges that scare me (though they do!), it's the putting of myself out there.
The only way to explain the reason why my wife and I are launching AccessTheStory has been to tell our story. And in the telling of our story comes vulnerability; the wondering if our story is of any value; and the fear of incurring the wrath of the tall-poppy syndrome.
Nonetheless, we set up a series of interactive stations on Saturday night at our launch event, and watched 90 people journey through our story. It was a little harrowing to witness at first, but my self consciousness dissipated - not because of the encouraging turnout, or the encouraging words, or the surprising social media engagement - it was because of one conversation.
A local baptist pastor looked me in the eye as he left and said, "thank-you for telling your story - the questions you have asked of yourself are the ones I've been avoiding. And God has shown me that I need to wrestle with them."
So, here I sit, the morning after one of the most significant weekends in my ministry life - it's been worth pushing through the vulnerability, as it's been replaced with a feeling of overwhelming encouragement by the reminder that God wants to speak through my story.