For When You Get Hurt by the Church

Wednesday, November 7, 2018

I'm sure all of us have at one point gotten hurt by someone in our church or by our church as a whole. And if you haven't, your day is coming. Unfortunately, churches aren't perfect - probably because they are filled with imperfect people.

We get hurt by people in the world almost all the time, so why would someone at church hurting us be a bigger deal? I think it's because we have a higher standard for people at church; we expect more from them since they have the Spirit of God living inside of them. 

But we don't always account for the flesh.

So I'm going to go over some points today for anyone who has found themselves in a situation where they've been hurt by a church.
Don't act like a kid. Respect the other person even if you don't agree with him.

Don't run by emotions. When emotions are high and things are being said, it's easy to just act on whatever you're feeling. But that's never a good idea. Take some time and don't respond or act on anger or frustration.

Give kindness for malice. Over and over again, Jesus tells his disciples to love their enemies (Mathew 5:44) and to "heap coals of fire" on their heads (Romans 12:20). 

You don't have to open up to everyone. Just because someone goes to church with you doesn't mean you have to spill your guts out about every little thing. In a world where everyone is over exposed, I think it's good to have some people who guard emotions and don't just let anything spill out of their mouths.

Be careful who your friends are. We can't always tell someone's character the first time we meet them, and there are lots of people who will put up a facade at church. So it's sometimes hard to tell who's real and who's fake. Just a warning - be careful.

Have boundaries. Healthy boundaries are good in any relationship, and church relationships are no different. Even though our church should be like family to us, there's still times when we have to have boundaries in order to protect our immediate families and ourselves. 
Remember, we're all human. None of us are perfect and we all make mistakes. 

Don't hold it against them. We can't be bitter about something that someone did, because that's not love. We all make mistakes and we've all wronged somebody at some point.

Have a forgiving heart. Be willing to forgive and move on, even if they didn't ask for forgiveness. Sometimes we need to forgive people more for ourselves then for them.
We can't do any of the points above without some supernatural help from God. Our human strength won't cut it because we can't do it in our own strength. It's not in our nature to just let things slide - we want justice when someone wrongs us. 

But we can't take justice into our own hands; we just have to trust that the Lord will take care of it in His time.

In summary, no one is perfect and no church is perfect. We're all going to get hurt (and do the hurting too probably!) at some point or another and we need to know how to respond.

How do you respond when someone hurts you?
"Forbearing one another, and forgiving one another, if any man have a quarrel against any: even as Christ forgave you, so also do ye." ~ Colossians 3:13 kjv

Photo by Akira Hojo on Unsplash

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