Monthly Archives: June 2013

Exodus International closing- an open letter

You can almost not help having heard the news that Exodus International announced last Wednesday that they were shutting down. We’ve been reading a lot of “open letters” to Alan Chambers, and to Exodus, a lot of press accurate and inaccurate, a LOT of comments by people on all sides, and a lot of disclaimers.

Kristin and I felt it was important now (that we’ve had some time to rest after a very busy week last week) to add our own voices, though they may not be heard as loudly as some, to this subject.

Kristin and I are second generation (and now last) generation Exodus– the organization has played a significant role in our lives as our parents have been the directors of a member ministry for most of our lives, and as we became involved ourselves. We are deeply thankful for the ways in which Exodus has blessed our family, it’s leaders have served as role models for us in our youth and have become dear friends as we’ve grown up. In our deepest time of grief the Exodus family was a family to us who knew our parents; their hearts, their heart to minister to those in need, and their desire to love the lost, the lonely, and the broken the way that Jesus does, and stood beside us as we lost our Mom. It has been a great privilege and honor to learn from and serve beside so many fearless men and women of God and we thank each and every one of them for the years of blood, sweat and tears they have put into the ministry of Exodus.

That said, and while we grieve to see the end of an era, we also couldn’t be more excited about the road ahead. We stand beside other leaders and are hopeful for the chance to start a narrative that will build a bridge between the church and not only the gay community, but all those seeking a relationship with Jesus, no matter their walk of life. While holding firmly to biblical sexual ethic, it is our deepest desire to communicate the love of God in a way that heals instead of brings division, and that opens hearts to truth instead of leaves them defensive and alone. In all of this we are confident, in spite of the doubts some people have expressed, that the views being expressed by Alan Chambers and other leaders like him are God-inspired, and we agree with them whole-heartedly.

“Love The Lord your God with all of your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength…Love your neighbor as yourself. There is no commandment greater than these.”
Mark 12:30-31



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On our way!


Ready Or Not, Here We Come!

Well friends, tomorrow in the wee hours of the morning we will begin our journey to Irvine Ca. for the Exodus freedom conference. We know it is going to be an amazing conference this year and we can’t wait for it to get started. Stay tuned for updates.

A few things before we go though 🙂

  • Have you checked out the live streaming options for this years conference? You can watch the beginning of the conference and the speech from Alan Chambers for FREE!! click the link ( ) for all the info and be sure to check out the opening night, you don’t wanna miss it!
  • Thursday June 20th be sure to check out Our America with Lisa Ling on the OWN network 10/9c. She is doing a special report titled God & Gays. On the show Alan and Leslie  Chambers sit down with a group of people who have been harmed by reparative therapy and listen as they share their stories , We think this is very important work and stand with Alan and Leslie and all of Exodus in their desire to take responsibility and seek reconciliation .

We hope that you will join us in praying for the conference, the attendees ,the speakers and the people tuning in via live stream! Watch the clip below for a sneak peek of God & Gays


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On Father’s Day

IMG_2799One of the hardest parts of growing up for me has been coming to the realization that people I look up to and admire are, after all, people and they fail, sometimes they are wrong, and sometimes they make bad decisions.

I’m a person for whom role models has always been a huge thing. I think it has something to do with being the oldest; I took the job of being a role model very seriously (you can just ask my siblings how much fun that was sometimes), what my actions were influencing my younger siblings and others to do mattered a great deal to me (and still does), and so I looked for people to look up to and guide me.

It’s shocking when you find yourself old enough to know your own mind and you realize that you disagree with one or some of the people you have looked up to most of your life, or worse, that you think they are wrong.  For me at least it hurts and it’s disappointing and I have to work hard to understand grace and remember that people fail, but that God does not.

There’s also something really scary about realizing your role models are people just like you… it means you’re a person just like them. I can remember thinking when I was young, “someday I will be capable of great things like….” insert whoever I was aspiring to be like at that moment. Growing up and understanding the humanity of those you’ve put on a pedestal means that suddenly “someday” is today and that can be a little terrifying!

Growing up is hard.

Fortunately for me, of all of the different people I have looked up to in my life, there is one human role model who only becomes a greater example to me as I get older and that is my Dad.

My Dad isn’t perfect, not by any means, and he would be the first one to tell you that, but he’s a man who truly understands grace and it’s a great honor to be his daughter. My Dad’s faith is like a giant old oak tree; there are many branches some of them knotted and twisted, some of them reaching straight towards the heavens, its roots dig deep into the ground and it’s trunk is thick and sturdy. My siblings and I have gotten to grow up in the protected shade of that faith and it’s been a blessing I don’t have words to describe. Storms have come into our lives and shaken the branches, sometimes breaking a few, but through it all the tree remains, strong and dependable.

My Father is an amazing man who has sacrificed himself to honor God, to be faithful, and to love and there is no better example on earth to follow than that.

Happy Father’s Day Don Sloan Brown.

I love you- even when you make me mad =).

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What Do You Do When Your Son is Gay?

I don’t know how I could add anything to this so I won’t try. May we all learn to stand against fear and in the face of it, love courageously .

Susan Cottrell & FreedHearts


“Mom, I’m gay.” Earth-shattering words to many conservative Christian parents — tragically, many view it as right up there with, “Your child has a brain tumor.” Actually, Christians will empathize with a brain tumor, but just try telling the church your child is gay and you will find the limit of grace withheld not only from gay Christians but from their accepting families. Not only what is said but unsaid can be oppressive for a family seeking love and truth.

I do not blame the parents in these situations for one nanosecond. Lord knows, they are trying to respond, with the wind knocked out of them, in an area where the church at large allows no breathing room. Parents blame themselves and Christians blame them. Seriously. No sooner do we hear the word gay or lesbian than we brace for impact — because we know the attack is coming.


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Jesus Stalkers

“Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’ Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’”

And with that, Jesus speaks what I consider to be one of the most frightening verses in the Bible.  I mean, really, how can these guys get so many things right, and yet Jesus says He never knew them?

We are terrifically modern people.  As average people, we are able to know more than at any other time in history.  We have a world of knowledge available to us.  We are able to endlessly study the Bible, read countless commentaries, even learn the original languages…

…and yet, despite all of the wonderful things we know, I wonder if any of us will be the ones saying “Lord, Lord.”  continue reading



Matt Appling is an Author, Art Teacher, Pastor and blogger ( and I’m sure many other wonderful things as well) , he started The Church of No People blog in 2008.

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