Psalms 61;2b

When my heart is overwhelmed, lead me to the rock that is higher than I

Monday, April 27, 2009

Church Splits...

This is definitely a life changing event...and I approach this subject with caution as I don't want anyone to be hurt or feel accused...
First I want to say that I have been on both sides...several times...the first even took place when I was around 12 years old. I had to leave all my church friends that I grew up with. As a child, I barely knew what happened, but I do know that alot of hurtful things were said that caused my parents to cry and be in turmoil for a long time. My parents kept from me the things that were said or done...they didn't want to ruin the influence of the people that left...these people were not reconciled till about 15 years ago and they still dont get along the best in the world, but are able to worship together...
What is funny is that splits happened in the Bible several times...
Acts 15
After the Jerusalem Council, Barnabas and Paul were planning on making their second journey. Barnabas wanted to take John Mark, but Paul opposed the idea because Mark had departed from them on the first Journey. Consequently, Barnabas took John Mark, and Paul took Silas and the two groups went their separate ways (Acts 15:36-41). After Barnabas gave his cousin a second chance, Paul was later able to call him a coworker (Philem 24; cf. Col 4:10) who was helpful to his ministry...so basically, Paul and Barnabas came to the point to agree to disagree...

Genesis13;8-9
So Abram said to Lot, "Please let there be no strife between you and me, nor between my herdsmen and your herdsmen, for we are brothers. Is not the whole land before thee? separate thyself, I pray thee, from me: if thou wilt take the left hand, then I will go to the right; or if thou depart to the right hand, then I will go to the left.

Tom and I went thru splits at Faith two different times. Both times, it took the core of the church workers...Tom and I worried and prayed and prayed and worried... but you remember what happened? God had people to step up and take the place of those who had left and these people became strong members of the church body. Unfortunatly we don't know the full picture and God's plan...what I don't think is in God's plan is backbiting, strife, remarks that are a bit too forward, etc.
My next point that I want to make, is that I have never been part of the "leaving" split... I have never been in the group that left...so that makes me be in a much greater turmoil...I love my church and my church family...they have been so good to me...but then I hear of comments that were made and I try to analyze why comments with that kind of malice were made and I wonder where the christian attitude is...? This is not the people that loved me...
What if we ARE doing what God planned?? What if God knows what he is doing and has split the church up intentionally? I have prayed and prayed for confirmation that I have done the right thing and have gotten confirmation several times..but why are people still so bitter and angry about the split? Is it because of the hurt? Why do they feel the need to lash out at one another? Is that God telling them to do make hurtful or spiteful comments? I am praying even as I type that I don't say something that will offend anyone...I have mentioned to several people that talking bad about the church we left is NOT acceptable...
Most often when you get together a bunch of people, there will be conflict...I tried to explain to Lukas and Morgan why things happened...the only way I knew how to do it was that some of us were raised expecting more in the way of being fed and worship...If you have a shepherd who can feed his flock only tender meat, then the ones who need the tough meat will never get satisfied...the tough meat helps to clean the teeth, helps the digestive system...etc. I like to be plowed...I like a preacher to get right where I am at and open up things deep in my soul that I have closed off or sugarcoated....
I have heard preachers preach and do great jobs...but never left me thinking harder on anything...basically, I needed something deeper...why would others fault me for that?
The preacher last night at the church preached on "examine yourself"....I want to examine myself to make sure I don't have any hatred, malice or strife in my heart...in this day and time, we can't afford to loose people who are dear to us. Please try to understand that God is in control and he is doing what is good for each of us in the long run...making comments and backbiting will only cause hurt and anger....
Nothing in the Bible states that Paul talked bad about Barnabas and ridiculed him...I wont let anyone ridicule my church family just because our wants are different....
Again, I hope I havent hurt anyone or said anything to confuse anyone...your feedback is welcome...

6 comments:

Denise said...

I personally have no problem with anyone leaving. What I do have a problem with is someone saying I don't want to be part of a church that doesn't want the spirit.Talk about back-biting! I don't know where anyone thinks that if someone didn't want Jerry McClain that they don't want the spirit and can't believe that anybody wouldn't want him for that reason. How dare anyone tell me about my walk with Christ and judgeing me. The judgement is for God and God alone.It seems that judgement was put on those of us that didn't want him for our pastor.Talking about a church split. We weren't voting on the members of the church. We weren't going nananana we don't want him because you all do. Each of us had a right to their vote and it should not have even been brought up again after the election in my opinion.If we were so split against other why would the Lord allow the services that those for him was the very reason they wanted him. People were forming their opinions from that first time he preached so I suppose the Lord blesses a split church. Who said that the people that wanted him weren't the cause of the split. Who said it wasn't them that caused us not to have one mind and one accord. This wasn't a game. We each needed to examine ourselves and go how the Lord led us personally, and personally he never taught me to quit. What was said about the people that left when Tom was voted in? Plenty of back-biting going on then. It somehow was a different situation then I guess. I'm sorry if this sounded hateful. It is something that I've been wanting to say and now I've said it. If I've made you mad it wasn't my intention, you said feedback was welcome and I chose to do so. I hope that you continue to come and join us once in a while.

Sherry said...

I love you Denise and you have spoken many truths that I agree with...hopefully we can all just move on and forget about all this...I am trying to be the peacemaker here, I guess...LOL
I told Rachel that we would have to go out to eat on a Sunday...you all are precious to me...Love you...

Crystal said...

I just have to look at it this way, God lets his people know when they need to move. If he has to use things like the split to re-arrange us, then who are we to question? He has a place for us all, and if Faith isn't where he wants those who have left, thats at their discernment to seek and pray about where God wants them.

I personally like Jerry. And I didn't have a decision made until I had my ballot. I just really wanted what God wanted. And no, I dont like how it went, and I certainly didnt like what happened the night of the split. When I saw the kids crying and people hurting... my heart crumbled. But again, God has a reason... it didnt take his off guard that it happened. He knew and he still knows. And wherever each person who has left ends up, Im sure that God will give them direction on where to go and when to go.

The backbiting is so unnecessary, because as much as I love my church, I know that Faith isnt the only church where God can visit his people. If it is, we need a bigger building! I love everyone who left and yes, I miss them all... but my prayer is that someone else wherever they end up will be blessed just as much as they blessed me in the time I got to worship with them.

One more thought and Ill hush. I also feel like God did some re-arranging to get other people to step up and take charge for God. Not that the others weren't doing a fine job, because they were. But God has different plans for those and those left. We as a body at faith and the bodies that are joined by those left have to decide what to do from now on. I guess Im trying to say something like a remodeling process. Like our houses when we remodel. Its not because its ugly, we just dont like it and want something different. Maybe thats what God wants?

I love you Sherry, and I hope God uses you to bless people in the ways that you and your Kids have me. :) And I certainly haven't stopped praying for you, nor will I!!!

Sherry said...

Crystal, you said it better than I did...Love you too...

Very Blessed in TN said...

Sherry you did a great job explaining how you feel. alot of us was hurt by comments that were made like "i am so happy how the election went maybe i am wrong but i am happy" When a child asks why that was said when so many were crying thats hard to explain.We must love all!!!! I really love all the people at Faith and miss yhem terriably. I was at that church for 10 years, they are my family.I wish all them the best. We must follow Gods lead no matter what. I have prayed for Gods leadership and he confirms this is what he wants me to do.As far as the back-bitting we must pray for those who feel lead to do and say hurtful things. They certainly have problems and need our prayer and love more than ever.I love you Sherry you are my sister. God bless you and your family. Love your sis tracy

Charity said...

Sherry,
This may sound strange, but I feel like an outsider looking in on this situation, I know I am a member of the church and I was there, but I never set my heart on any man.( My husband is my pastor) I do feel as if God set his approval on Preacher McClain but other than that I cannot presume to know the will of God in any situation, I only know this that John said " Beloved let us love one another: for love is of God; and everyone that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God." I love with all my heart those on both sides of this situation, I'm thankful the Lord told my husband not to vote, now I know why, so to all my friends, no matter what your opinion, love one another.