Tuesday, January 24, 2017

What the World Needs Now is Healthy Confrontation


Cross-posting at the ACWB today!

"I'm not confrontational."

"I'm a perfectionist."

Have you ever heard one of these above statements?

Life is hard. It can be burdensome, challenging, and parenthood and all that that entails is often "easier said than done." I think we make it harder, though, when we portray to the world that everything is well and good- perfect, even- and we don't allow the light of vulnerability to shine in and make community possible and even reachable. On the one hand, I hate going too deep here in this space, for fear that the messages I bring sound condescending, or preachy, or rude. Yet sometimes, I feel God laying on my heart something that humbles and strengthens me. If this message gives even a tiny shred of hope or truth to just one person, then this post has purpose, and I don't regret writing it. In light of this, I will wade a little deeper.  Every once in a while, we chat all things spirituality on this blog and so I hope to do that here with you today. ;)


"I don't like criticism."

Because it is only human not to like constructive criticism, advice, or correction, we would rather hide in our sin. These are the lies we tell ourselves to avoid looking in the mirror at the marring effects of our own sin.

We say, "Don't give me advice."

No one - and I mean no. one.- likes to see their own faults.

Scripture says that if we love God, we will hate the world.

But we say, "We all have strengths and weaknesses."

Friends I think this is nothing more than harmless-sounding sugarcoating for sin.

If we look our weaknesses in the face, however, we realize that sometimes, often, these things have become sins.

I heard this philosophy recently:

"I can't confront someone... I have to wait until they come to me when they are struggling."

Again, a comforting lie that we use to sugarcoat the reality of sin.

The reality is that sometimes sin needs confronting because lies, hypocrisy, and jealousy can be very damaging. We run to the things that make us feel better about our mess, but in the end, it only makes everything worse. Without the truth we're like the walking dead.

The nature of sin is to steal, kill, and destroy. It is the work of the Father of lies, Satan.

Sin destroys and kills. If you had anything else fading in and out of your life - a disease, a carcinogen,  or a gangrenous infection- that destroyed and killed- how long would you wait to go to the ER to address it?

In the same way, we need to address the rottenness of sin.

You can't let a gangrenous sin grow until it is untamable. It must be rooted out, and this is done through spiritual confrontation.

Yes .... it is true that we should go to confession, and there are times when we have to wait for the Holy Spirit to do its work in someone's heart, so that they realize their mistakes, change, and apologize for their sin.

Could you also sometimes speak truth to the person, and wouldn't that help?

We run the risk of being judgemental and/or running the full gamut all the way to hypocrisy when we confront. We should be very careful that we aren't stepping on toes, or speaking out of self-righteousness when we meddle. Is it your job to take something into your own hands? That's why this is touchy, and it should be approached with great care. In our day, though, sadly often gossip takes the place of truth-telling. So often, we don't speak the truth to others because we are so busy gossiping.   We can tell the truth about others' sin when it isn't to their face.

Here's an example of what I'm talking about:

Did you see her {take for example....}  instagram picture? How could she post that? Doesn't she know that's {perhaps} a mortal sin? She's provoking others to lust. She's causing envy to herself and others.  And on top of that, she is putting it in a public place, where she could be putting herself at risk and in serious danger?!

Why is there anything wrong with this conversation?

Because....

1. Gossip is an infectious sin.

2. Gossip does not tell the truth to the person who needs to hear truth.

3. Gossip can spread rumors which can be very hurtful and threatening to the person being spoken about.

For once, take the sin to the person in the spirit of Biblical confrontation.*

I think that what the world needs now isn't just "love, sweet love." It's healthy confrontation.

We need to see each other, and love means we help to root out the sin that hurts our friends and loved ones.

Try it. See if it has healthy results.

You might say, no, I'm not like that.

But this is called communication.

Do you know how to communicate honestly? Or do you shrug and turn to someone else to gossip about the sin of others?

How can you effectually confront a gangrenous sin today?

Also, as a somewhat unrelated sidenote, I think that perhaps the reason women in our day and culture turn to this type of sin is out of a lack of confidence. We should attempt to show mercy and feel some compassion for this type of thing. If someone hasn't developed their own talents or interests- things like dancing, hiking, reading, writing, art, arts & crafts, music, etc- they will or can turn toward less productive hobbies. Encourage someone struggling with self-doubt to develop her talents. Imagine how healing this could be for someone with low self-esteem! :0)

*Matthew 18:15-17 explains how to effectually confront a brother or sister caught in a sin: "If your brother sins {against you}, go and show him his fault, just between the two of you. If he listens to you, you have won your brother over. But if he will not listen, take one or two others along, so that 'every matter may be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses.' If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church; and if he refuses to listen even to the church, treat him as you would a pagan or a tax collector."

Does this mean unfriend? Yes and absolutely. I can safely say cheers to that!


Pssst... one more thing before you go--- don't forget to pin this image! :0) ;-)

Linking up with Tuesday Talk

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