The last 5 posts, for want of a better word have been ‘nice’: reasonable, honest and open.
This, the 6th, does not seem so. When churches collide/clash, there has to be a space for ‘truth-telling’: not just telling your own story, but clearly setting out how you feel you have been offended by the other.
I’m reluctant to put this point in, to be frank, as the amount of times I have heard variants of ‘they need to hear the truth’ (translation: I want to tell them my version and not listen) or ‘I have to tell the truth in love’ (same translation: I want to tell them my version and not listen, but this time with extra hate) does not endear me to the phrase ‘telling the truth’.
I am setting it in context of the last 5 posts in this series:- build or rebuild the relationship and then get to this stage.
It is neccesary though, as I have been in many situations, both church and personal, that have been like that lyric from Suzanne Vega:-
‘we skirt around the danger zone and don’t talk about it later’
Keeping the peace being more honest than facing up to ‘this is not working’.
I also remember 2 old quotes to the effect of :-
‘many churches have so much brushed under the carpet that you run the risk of breaking your neck trying to cross the sanctuary’
‘many Christians try to be far nicer than God is’.
I’m stopping there: this has been hard to write…