If You’ve Been Hurt at Church

Published by DonDavidson on

Have you, or your child, or someone else you love been abused at a church?

Have you been made to feel unwelcome at a church, or even been asked to leave?

Have you felt neglected by people at a church?

In other words, have you been hurt by someone at a church?

If so, I’m sorry.

But please understand two things.

First, some people who claim to follow Jesus do a poor job of living out the Second Greatest Commandment—to love their neighbor as themselves. (For example, see my blog entry on LGBTQ and Christianity.)

Second, if you ever want to find peace with God again, you need to try to forgive the person or persons who hurt you. As I have discussed before, our entry into Heaven may depend upon our willingness to forgive others.[1] And maybe you also need to forgive God—forgive him for giving people free will, forgive him for allowing people the freedom to hurt others, forgive him for not preventing them from hurting you.[2]

Forgiveness is not easy. It is not so much an emotion as a choice. We choose to act with kindness toward the person who hurt us despite how we may feel about them. As C. S. Lewis points out, when we do that our animosity toward that person decreases, and we begin to feel differently about them, more charitable, more forgiving—and often they begin to feel differently about us, too.

[1]. See Matthew 6:15: “But if you do not forgive other people, then your Father will not forgive your offenses.”

[2]. I am not saying that blaming God is justified—only that it is natural and common. In Chapter 3 of my book, Beyond Blind Faith, entitled “Why Do Bad Things Happen (to Me)?,” I discuss several reasons why God allows things to happen that we consider “bad.” You can read an excerpt from that chapter by clicking here, or by following the link to “Don’s Books,” above, where you can find a link to excerpts from each of the chapters of Beyond Blind Faith.


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