Here’s a brief note of concern as a pastor to those that have or might consider running from your church.
In the last 14 years of ministry I’ve noticed there seems to be two instances when people withdraw from their church family: Failure and Crisis.
1. Failure: For years I’ve watched countless people run from the church after they’ve made big mistakes. The root of this running is pride. That pride manifests itself in two ways: arrogance (“I don’t need those people, they’ll just judge me.”) and shame (“I can’t face them after what I’ve done.”). While a healthy church wants to move them toward restoration and the grace of God, these Christians end up running.
2. Crisis and loss: To add to the pain and frustration of walking through a valley I’ve watched people make the grave error of withdrawing from the very people that love them. This usually stems from the thought, “I’ve got this” or “I don’t want to bother anyone.” Because of this pastors and church members are many times the last to know and thus cannot be there to help.
Note: The enemy loves to get believers to isolate themselves. He loves to lure sheep away from the flock. Wolves knows that sheep are easier to pick off when they are away from the shepherd and the flock. Scripture clearly states that we are the body of Christ….a family. You don’t run from your family no matter what has taken place. Your pastors and church family are a gift to you from Jesus……even during times like these.
Come home. You are dearly loved.