My phone was blowing up with text messages and phone calls. My friends were mad and they were hurt. By fellow church members even. Whether we got copies of the letter at our homes or not, we were hurting for our friends and our church. I heard things like:
“Now it’s personal. You’ve done messed with the wrong woman’s husband.”
“What are we going to do? I don’t know if I can keep doing church like this.”
“I don’t understand. How do you call yourself a Christian and then behave like that?”
Two men from our Sunday School class, that we count as friends, had each received letters dripping with hatred from a lady in our church who apparently did not like how a meeting she was part of the night before had gone. Neither of these two men had even said much in the meeting, but she sure was holding them personally responsible. My husband was there and heard nothing from this lady.
A couple of days later, my husband received his own copy of the same letter. With the exception to the greeting, all three of them got the exact same letter.
My heart was heavy. What was going on within this place we call church?
It was keeping us restless and wondering how to respond to this sort of thing. Because it’s wrong. It’s wrong to treat people that way, whether you like them or not. It’s wrong because Jesus said, “they’ll know you are my disciples if you have love for one another”. And nothing about this sort of personal attack on people screams love.
A night or two later, I read the blog of a college friend of mine that told of his journey through the ending of his marriage and how his wife had been unfaithful. I don’t know how you deal with that, but he said he finally sent her a message one day that said he forgave her.
And I wrestled…
Any my husband wrestled…
And I wondered if I could ever forgive this woman and the attacks she had been making towards our church staff and now church members. And I found myself lying in bed wondering why God forgives any of us and I couldn’t answer that. But I know that He does. And I know that this isn’t what He meant for Church to look like. And I wondered what He was up to at this place we call church…