A Church Divided

Praying

I get to do a lot of things…wear a lot of hats…and…meet a lot of people.
While my ‘home’ church is a healthy, vibrant, and fairly large, entity…I have been sent by the Lord to smaller churches from time to time to help out. Sadly, often times the reason these church bodies are needing help is because of a church fight, or split.
Not good.
But…can we talk?….not always ‘bad’ either.
Sadly enough though the outcome is a small church struggling to survive.
The damage has been done and often times……it is fatal.
It starts harmlessly enough…….
I don’t like the music…
I don’t like the pastor….(or…insert whoever here)
I don’t like the color of the carpet…..
Ok, you get it. When it is a simple matter of not liking something…talk about it…
Um….face to face not behind the back.
I have met some of these people who have purposely started church fights….
And….can we talk here?
I don’t much care for them. Or, at least, I don’t care much for what they do.
You might have known the type…
They cause a split in one body of Believers then mosey on down the road and do it in another church.
Now, sometimes it starts out as a ‘harmless’ circumvention of church authority…
Like today.
At my home church.
I am currently teaching an adult Sunday school class (our church calls them ‘Connect Classes’ but hey, old habits die hard do they not?) and as I entered the room this morning I noticed a small stack of papers with a note atached saying; “Martin class. Please hand out and discuss briefly.”
The ‘RED FLAGS‘ immediately started flapping in the windtunnels of my mind and suspicion arose to the forefront.
No name….that’s not a good sign, hmmm……………………….so I looked in another class and saw the same thing on the table. As I went to the Worship set I was watching for the Minister to Adults in the halls and byways because I wanted to question him on the mysterious paperwork. Not finding him, I forgot the matter and went to worship Jesus.
After which, I went to my classroom……………………………………….
So, I had these papers (which, by the way were about some of the ‘T.V. Evangelists’ and contemporary Christian writers) on the table where I sit while the class was about to start. Our Adult Minister came through and scooped up the aforementioned literature and as I asked him about them he replied that he didn’t know where they came from….but he had heard about them.
I had an odd peace inside knowing that the Spirit of God had warned me in advance.
And you know what?
We had a great Sunday Scho…..ahem…Connect Class this morning talking about divisions in a local church body and how sometimes they can easily get started when someone has an agenda that, in their minds, needs to be talked about.
So, please go through proper channels when you want to initiate something in your churh. When you just ‘wing it’, you really can cause a lot of damage without even meaning to….
And for those of you who want to start a church fight on purpose…….
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……………………………..I DON’T BACK DOWN……………………………………….
………………………………………………………………….. I CORINTHIANS 1:10

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