New York Times bestselling author Stephen Mansfield explores the purposes God has when we get hurt by his people in his book, Healing Your Church Hurt: What To Do When You Still Love God But Have Been Wounded by His People.
“If we are committed to the living God, everything turns redemptive, no matter how horrible it is.”
Being hurt by the Church can turn out good for us if we walk through that hurt in the right way. Because, like it or not, we are surrounded by sinful people.
Stephen has found, from personal experience and listening to others’ stories, that church hurt is widespread in America. The wounds that are inflicted by church members and church leadership are deep and can resonate for generations. While this thought may be disappointing and disheartening, it points to the truth about our condition as fallen human beings.
Being inside a church building certainly doesn’t provide a shield against our sinfulness. Not everything we do reflects God; not everything our churches do will reflect God.
“We will always endure people who oppose us. There will always be wounds. And we will do stupid things too. But, we have a God who knows the end from the beginning. We have a God who will bring our destiny about.”
Stephen encourages us to see beyond the church hurt caused by our sinful brothers and sisters. Instead we should walk with God who cares for us. We should walk with the God who came to the earth for the very purpose of cleaning up the messes we make in our sinfulness.
On our end, we must remember that going through hardship is consistently a way God uses to help us grow and mature. Instead of turning away from God when His people hurt us, we ought to turn to Him.
Their hurtful ways don’t reflect God’s heart.