Stewarding the community is both for the person and for the community. It is for the person to be aligned in discipleship to continue or grow in Godliness. It is for the community in preserving and aligning the mission of the church. Most confrontations can be helpful for personal growth. Very few of them are something that are worth leaving the church over. You can listen to the whole message right here:
During the message I shared some ‘bullets’ on the subject.
If you feel the need to confront someone:
- If you seek to bring someone into alignment, be willing to help carry their burdens according to Galatians 6:1-2.
- Examine your own heart first. Its crazy how when someone is wrong we want to judge, but when we are wrong we want grace.
- Is what you are saying right, helpful or necessary. If your knee jerk reaction is to correct then your heart isn’t right.
- Boldness doesn’t mean you aren’t meek. Don’t be a jerk.
- Don’t impose personal convictions that aren’t spelled out in scripture.
- Recognize the journey they are on.
- See the best in every individual, and use confrontation as an opportunity to pull it out.
- Make a practice of not correcting outside of relationship.
- Go to the person. If you are talking to others about someone else, you’re the one that needs to be corrected.
- Assume the best. Only speak out of love and honor.
- Make sure you are for the other person before you speak.
- Bring a plan to help, not just level accusations.
- Don’t be shy about expecting followers of Jesus to actually follow Jesus.
If you find yourself being confronted:
- It’s not a bad thing. It’s about being aligned with Jesus and someone cares about you enough to call you out on something. Know you are loved.
- Fight to be unoffendable. Your first choice will be to be offended.
- Reply, don’t react. Defensiveness hinders growth.
- Be willing to be accountable to someone.
- Let critics become coaches. Not every confrontation is going to come from someone with a right heart.
- Understand that biblical confrontation is for your protection. This is about community and alignment. It’s the animals that stray from the herd that make easy prey for the lion.
- Consider that God is calling you to another level of pursuit. Grow from it. Being called to live a holier life is not a bad thing.
- Don’t value your personal freedoms over your pursuit of God.
- Ultimately, it’s about the mission of the church.
- Don’t be lazy with action plans.
- Understand in community you will be confronted by friends if you aren’t acting like you follow Jesus. If you say you are a Christian than christ-like fruit should be evident.
Christianity is Not a Private Faith
I realize some of this may not settle well. As Americans our mindset leans towards individualism and a ‘who are you to tell me that’ mindset. But this isn’t a biblical idea. This is American culture. This is westernized Christianity.
Chuck Colson writes, Modern Christians, especially evangelicals, see the Christian faith primarily if not exclusively as the gospel of ‘Jesus and me.’ Christianity is simply a personal relationship with Jesus. Accept Christ into your personal life and you will be saved. This is true as far as it goes, but it falls woefully short. Although we are justified through our faith, Christianity is much more than a private transaction with Jesus. . . . According to Scripture, Christianity is corporate.”
This is why alignment around Jesus and around mission is so critical. Your faith decision and your personal decision don’t affect just you. You belong to a body. And the body of Christ is kept healthy through alignment.