I know it can be so frustrating to see those in your church who do not take things seriously. The shallow lack of depth; the boisterous giggling at inappropriate moments; the disinterested vapid gaze during sermons; the squabbling and secret gossip; the overly flirtatious; the halfway-hearted visitors who treat the sanctuary like a social club.
We expect our pastors and leaders to correct the culture quickly. We want a church that truly loves Christ and worships sincerely, without concern for how others think, that they would see as we see. It’s a burning, fiery, deeply grieving passion that we can hardly contain.
This frustration is good. It shows you care. But — take heart in the long-term grace of God. Have patience. Be truthful, but do not grow bitter. Be firm, but do not shame them. Speak when it matters, but let small things go. Anything else is flesh, and God does not honor this. Trusting Him means we move ourselves out of the way for God’s grace to uppercut the lost.
For God was patient with our stubborn hearts too. God sees the mosaic of our faith in fits and starts. He loved us in our first lap of faith when we were so ignorant and rebellious; He continues to love us now so that we may love others who just don’t get it yet. Many people in our churches just don’t know. It is the blindness of being behind, and you have been tasked to help them see. We cannot coerce this, but only rely on the Spirit and His wisdom to give us the words to say what is right, what is true, and what will build us.
Love Him, and love your people too.
6 thoughts on “Be Frustrated, Furious, Faithful”
That’s what I like about the church — it’s so real. An imperfect church is a safe place to grow.
Love that you said it that way, we need more safe gracious places.
My concern is for me not to worry what others are doing. I might become judgemental, I need to keep my mind on what is being preached.The way i do this is take notes, so my mind doesn’t wander and, if possible sit in the front. There are little or no distractions then. It works for me.
I always used to wonder how/why people sat in the front. It felt so nerve-wracking to think there are rows of people behind me. But now I get it. 🙂
What the ekklisia needs is not to all be serious or all joking during church or having the responsible ones try not to judge the irresponsible ones: but it needs to have a format where they can all know each other well enough to be real with each other without feeling hurt or judgmental . The older ones may need a non distracted setting in order to concentrate and should be free to ask the other to take that into account. If the younger are bored out of their head they should feel free to say so and to seek change that would engage them.