Dealing with Disappointment in the Church

Kevin DeYoung has a great three part series (1, 2, 3) on Dealing with Disappointment in the Church over at his blog.  He gives some wonderful practical advice to church leaders and to church members on how to relate to one another.  Here are some of the key points.

First, leaders should ask:

  1. Do we have some mechanism for personally knowing our sheep?
  2. Do we have some way of knowing when people are not showing up at church?
  3. Are we confronting cliquishness in our church?
  4. Are there easy, identifiable ways for the shy, the non go-getters, and the more culturally reserved to get involved and be known by others?
  5. Is it at least possible that we are more at fault than we think?
  6. Have we made promises we didn’t deliver on?
  7. Are these critics generally critical?

And church members should ask:

  1. Did I ever ask for help?
  2. Have I overlooked opportunities to fit in and get to know people?
  3. Is it realistic for the leaders to give to every person in this church the kind of care I expect?
  4. If I really wanted to be loved and noticed why did I stop showing up?
  5. Am I willing to consider that I may be at fault more than I realize?
  6. Is it possible I’ve overlooked ways the body has cared for me because I was hoping a different part of the body would care for me?
  7. In general have I found this church and these leaders to be unloving and unsupportive?

DeYoung wraps up the series with this convicting challenge:

For both sheep and shepherds the indispensable requirements for living together are love and humility. Love to treat others as we want to be treated. Humility to consider how we may be at fault. Disappointment in the church is bound to happen. But it doesn’t have to destroy the unity of the body. The Lord can use our hurts to make all of us slower to speak and quicker to listen.

HT: Justin Taylor

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April 15 2010 04:00 am | Blog

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