Dealing with Disillusionment in Your Church
I've been around church long enough to realize that everyone goes through periods of disillusionment with their local church or pastor. Sadly, most people respond to these feelings in negative and immature ways. They might whine, complain, sit at home and lick their wounds, or in the worst cases, they will spread their negativity to whoever will listen to them.
What inevitably happens, is disillusioned people leave the church, carrying with them the false idea that it is everyone else's fault they are unhappy, and the grass is greener somewhere else.
That is, until the disillusionment happens there.
My wife is leading a women's book study around the book Your Beautiful Purpose by Susie Larson. One night as we were talking about church and ministry Stephanie shared a portion of the book with me that I though was insightful and potentially helpful for people walking through feelings of disillusionment. Larson concedes that everyone deals with feelings like this from time to time, but the key to handling them Larson says is answering the question, "will you maintain dignity and honor while you wrestle with what offends you?" Larson continues with this pointed quote from William MacDonald,
There is enough flesh in every one of us to wreck any local church or any other work of God. Therefore, we must submerge our own petty, personal whims and attitudes, and work together in peace for the glory of God and the common blessing.How insightful!
It is the flesh inside us that makes our trivial concerns seem so important.
It is the flesh inside us that tells us we know better than those who God has charged to lead us.
Larson continues with the acknowledgement that there is a time when the Lord may rise a person up to speak His truth into a bad situation. This, however, should only be done after considerable prayer and the seeking of wisdom from a select few others. And the goal of such a conversation should always be for the glory of God and the unity and blessing of the entire church.
These are good reminders. Satan loves to destroy the unity of God's people through disillusionment.
When God's people grumble the Great Commission will stumble.
Therefore we have to do everything we can to push through the sinful complaints of the flesh in order to maintain the unity of the Spirit of Jesus in His Church.