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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Omnishambles (05/01/14)

TITLE: Bruised Believers
By Chris Goglin


Many of us tend to manage our feelings of anger, resentment, and guilt fairly well. Some will hold in their feelings and not bother to “air” them publicly, others will present their opinions quickly and often hurtfully, and a few spend their lives in misery because of unhealed disagreements. Health problems and broken relationships may develop when our comments are inappropriate. At church, we expect others to treat us with kindness and understanding, but surprisingly, this may be the very place that Satan uses his clever tricks to wound other believers.

Has anyone ever been angry with you and shouted their disapproval? Most of us do not realize we have done wrong and the attack surprises us and catches us off guard. If done publicly, it may affect us dramatically. Even though we may be responsible, it is embarrassing. An example is a situation where I had to drop out of a choir concert due to circumstances involving a move out of state. The director came up to me in church, noticeable angry, and said, “I love you, but I am mad at you!” He grumbled and walked away. I just stood there humiliated. Replaying his actions for weeks in my mind kept me from visiting our former church. If I had managed my feelings properly, I should have told him how I felt, but just left things up in the air. More importantly, we both needed to forgive each other.

“And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you”. Ephesians 4:32 (KJV)

Many, unintentionally, use private information about a person that happens to slip out in the gossip aisle of the church. A friend of mine attended a Bible study where her teacher used her as an example of one with a weak faith because she experienced a dominant fear in her life. This not only let the whole group know what her fear was, but also affected her ministry. She eventually left the church crying. Some people have very bold personalities and do not even realize they hurt others with their words and actions.

We should all remember, “So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.” Matt. 12:7 (NIV)

Church splits are often the by-product of a miner quarrel swelling into a congregational battle. Choosing sides, lashing out in a cruel manner, and disrupting life-long friendships will break the bond of love needed for a warmhearted body of believers. Most of us have gone through a split in our lifetimes, and it leaves a sick, sad feeling that never seems to go away. The people we deeply cared for move on in their spiritual lives and do not care to look back. Whenever church attenders disagree, guilt feelings may come to the surface. The victim wonders whether he was truly responsible, the perpetrator feels bad for insensitivity. After all, love is the focus of a congregation where Jesus sets the perfect example.

If we can learn to manage our feelings with grace and patience, the guilt and broken relationships may have a chance to heal. Bottled-up emotions can lead to depression, insecurity, and serious health issues. We are fortunate to have a loving God with an instruction guide for these problems by using our Bibles daily. If only more believers would depend on this divine manual, instead of letting our tongues get the best of us.

“ Teach me, and I will hold my tongue: and cause me to understand wherein I have erred.” Job 6:24 (KJV)

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This article has been read 188 times
Member Comments
Member Date
C D Swanson 05/08/14
A beautifully written commentary that sparks truth along with a powerful message.

Well done.

God bless~

Judith Gayle Smith05/11/14
Wow. This hits home in so many ways for so many reasons. Thank you.
Joe Moreland05/11/14
You have authentically captured a situation that, as you state, almost all of us have been through at one time or another. It is always hard when splits happen within a church, and it is almost always due to bad decisions, hurt feelings and more concern for self than God on just about all parties involved.

I can't think of a single situation that captures the essence of this week's topic better than the way we, God's people, often mess up His will for our lives.

Great job!
Phyllis Inniss05/12/14
Great job with your article. Where there should be love and harmony in a place of worship, we find bitterness and unresolved issues. If we could only refer to a verse in Scripture to show the offender his/her failing, that might solve a problem.
Graham Insley05/13/14
A well written teaching with some very good points.

Blessings, Graham
Bea Edwards 05/14/14
You made many fine observations and gave sage words of advise in a helpful, compassionate manner.
Thank you~
C D Swanson 05/15/14

God bless~
Judith Gayle Smith05/16/14
Painfully poignant . . .

Hebrews 10:26-31 KJV