In a lot of ways we assume that by forgiving someone that this means the wrong never happened. Or, we think that by forgiving someone that this offer of forgiveness is only going to impact them. But the reality is, forgiveness, more times than not, actually benefits the forgiver far and above the one who has been forgiven.
Please, understand the heart of what I'm about to share, and not take it as a slight against a movement that exposed serious problems in our nation...but I'm going to start a new #MeToo movement. It is a movement where we recognize and call out our own faults and humbly address the planks in our own eyes rather than seek to point out the speck in everyone else's eyes and try to fix them, which, as we all know, can't happen. We can't fix others. But, we can address the issues in ourselves and hopefully help others see the issues in themselves by allowing them to see how we confront them in ourselves.
I've started noticing a trend with some (not all or even most) Christians, especially male Christians, and even more specifically male Christians who would consider themselves "culturally engaged" or taking on cultural ideologies that conflict with Biblical principles and moral standards found in the Bible. That trend is this...any time someone (like myself) mentions that we as believers need to love others better (not just those within the church, but also those outside of the church) and be kinder, more patient, and more gentle with people...there seems to rise up from the ranks of the individuals I mentioned above an immediate defensive posture, and their responses come across as almost a disdain for what is being said.
Being the leader in a church is hard work. Church folks can be some of the most frustrating and difficult folks to work with. But, despite their flaws (and our own) and the amount of stress and frustration we may face as church leaders, beating the sheep should never be an option. God doesn't take kindly to it, and we put ourselves in great danger when we ignore this fact and abuse the sheep for personal gain. Unfortunately, it happens more often than we may realize as beating the sheep isn't just a physical act. In this episode we introduce another host of the Angry Christian Podcast (Robert Platt) and explore how easy it is to fall into the angry trap as a church leader. [Ezekiel 34:1-11] Credits: Intro Music - "Angry Dance" by Simon Panrucker Other Music as it appears - "Oh Yeah" by Yello, "Sweet Georgia Brown" by Ben Bernie, Maceo Pinkard and Kenneth Casey, "Would Jesus Wear a Rolex" by Ray Stevens, and "Won't You Be My Neighbor" by Fred Rogers