Christians – Can we Please stop being so Insensitive!

This is my opinion which is in no way completely right so please don’t disagree with me too harshly, however it is my experience and it may well prove valuable to take into account. I’m sure there are many times when I have done similar things and think it is good for the Church, and ourselves personally, to take a look at some of it’s faults and work on them.

I have come into contact recently with some seriously insensitive christians, people who have used religion and well-meaning advice to (accidentally) injure, offend and alienate people around them, myself included.

Specifically I am talking about telling people to “be happy” when something awful happens and that “this is a good thing”. Where in the bible are we told to do this?

When someone’s world has literally crumbled around them what right do we have to tell them the situation is a good one? It does not affect us, it’s easy for us to say and it completely undermines their pain.

Excuse me, but blind faith should not take priority over our compassion! Show the world blind faith against all natural feelings in your own life and people will applaud you but ask them to do it in theirs and you are simply hurting them.

I totally, whole heartedly agree that God is good, that He works all things for the good of those who love Him and that He is always worthy of our praises. I really have no problem with people’s logic on this point – really I do see what they mean when they say things are good. I have a problem with the attitude that it’s ok to hit people over the head with these facts when they are just not in the place to receive them.

Look at what happened with Jesus and Lazarus. Jesus knew it was a good thing Lazarus had died – He was going to raise Him from the dead! If anyone had a right to tell his family his death was a good thing it was Jesus. Did He tell them this? No. He cried.

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When Jesus had the choice between promoting faith and showing compassion He chose the latter. We might think that it would have been better to proclaim God’s goodness in this place, but Jesus didn’t; He showed God’s character by sharing in their pain.

Church – let’s become like Jesus, let’s aim to share God’s love and compassion and keep our mouths shut when it comes to clichés. Perhaps if we manage this we will be able to shake off the labels we have earnt, hypocrites, judgmental, happy clappy, bible bashers.

Let’s focus on loving people and if in the process that calls for some positive advice of this sort, then fantastic, but if it isn’t needed lets not say it – I think that’s what Jesus would have done.

photo credit: <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/20872388@N06/5613639467/”>Peej’s Photos</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin> <a href=”http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/2.0/”>cc</a>

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12 thoughts on “Christians – Can we Please stop being so Insensitive!

      • I totally agree with you! When it come to being honest, there are going to be a lot of people out there who agree with you! Glad to have you reading! I look forward to reading more!!!

  1. Jesus gives us perfect peace and nothing can take that away!
    Peace and happiness are two different things and I believe that many people do not realize this fact.
    You’re right, we have to stop being so insensitive!
    Rejoice with them that do rejoice, and weep with them that weep. Romans 12:15

  2. I agree COMPLETELY!
    I think there’s a fine line between comforting and insensitivity; it’s a line we need to be very careful of because crossing it can and does turn hurting people away from Christ. Thanks for the reminder! You have a lot of wisdom.

    • You’re so right, I think it really can turn people away from Jesus. I work in a Christian company with some non christian staff mixed in, and 9 times out of 10 it will be the careless comments and insensitivity from christians which will back up the negative views of us the non christians have – it’s so sad. On a happier note thank you for reading my posts and commenting 🙂

  3. When I had cancer, I was so often told to be happy I stopped going to church entirely and have never gone back. I’m not mad at God, but I’m not happy with some of his ardent followers. It is horrible to be told to find joy in the midst of tragedy. It makes me believe the people who say this are clueless, living in another world than me. Cancer, death, finanancial disaster, loss are NOT gifts. Denying people the right to be sad and to grieve for their losses is unkind at the least. Thank you for this. It’s time someone said so. Besides me, that is.

    • Oh I’m so sorry that this happened to you. It really is so wrong that people can’t feel comfortable in churches when things get really hard, it’s just the opposite of what Jesus would want it to be. I hope that things are much better for you now, and on behalf of the Church I do want to apologise to you, because what happened was not right. Someone once apologised to me on behalf of the Church and weirdly it really helped me, so hopefully this will do the same for you, all the best to you.

  4. AMEN, AMEN, AMEN, AMEN! Say this over and over when with other Christians to raise awareness and encourage/admonish each other to better ways, as it may save some from fleeing the Jesus they think they see through the things Christians say and do. You do a wonderful job of addressing hard things with love and encouragement! Blessings! Diane

    • Thank you! There are often days when I just want to shout in peoples faces about this (probably not the best way to handle it if I’m honest) so for now blogging will have to do. This is such a frustrating thing about Church and I’m sure it’s caused a good many people to walk away!

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