The thing is, he has spread falsehoods about me, and it has cost me dearly, not only with the church which has also spread some falsehoods via misinterpretation or misunderstanding, but in the community at large. However, if he reinstates me and talks with me so I can get the answers I need that only he can provide, nothing further will happen and despite the fact that I have only posted the truth, I will retract and delete it.
We have tried to extend grace to them and they have not done the same for me.
Right now, the most gracious thing I could do has been done and is being done. I didn't want to do it, but Tom broke his end of the compromise without justification and without explanation, so I had to do it. Not out of retaliation, but out of love.
The most gracious thing he or that church leadership could do and should do right now is to place me under the proper order of church discipline. Believe it or not. But I am tired of them not doing what is biblically correct and acting against the BCO.
Tom could very well have said okay let's talk. He could very well of left the friendship intact on Facebook, and I would not have had to go to the proper authority about it. He could have done that and I would have never have had to report it. But he didn't. So I did.
Where is the grace? The mercy? The justice? The love? The forgiveness?
When Tom broke the compromise, he repeated the pain I suffered when my own birth father disowned me. And it's a pain that I can NEVER recover from.
NOTHING dictated that he sever the Facebook friendship. I had done everything right. I didn't do anything to warrant it. I kept my end of the compromise. I have witnesses. But he still broke the compromise. As a result, the truth came out.
When the shepherd lost just one sheep, he left the others to go in search of it. That's what a true shepherd does. But Tom threw the sheep under the bus. He then spread falsehoods about it. And to make things worse, he then threw it out the window. The sheep has been battered and abused. And Jesus has been hurt because this particular sheep has a handicap.
Jesus is unwelcome in that place because one of the least of these was bullied. Instead of sticking up for what is right, and Tom knew what is right and acknowledged their wrong, he joined the bullies. It saddens me.
When leaders don't apply scriptures equally and repeatedly target an individual and bully and abuse the individual, they bring down the entire organization to a very dark and corrupt level that God cannot stand.
Power. It's often a power hunger that causes it. There are a lot of interesting articles pertaining to the bullies of church leadership.
Abuse. When instead of exercising the biblical principles of conflict resolution, they either ignore it or do what they did to me, that's corruption as well. Often also due to being power hungry.
Destruction of friendships. Power hungry bullies who want to control everyone under them will do what it takes to destroy relationships. They are usually jealous of the friendships.
But here's my prayer:
That Tom and I do get the needed meeting and that the Facebook friendship will be restored.
That somehow a meeting with the church will take place so that all the misunderstandings which were made abundantly clear by Tom's own actions can be cleared.
Grace is a beautiful thing once you start grasping it and desiring what I want and need like this. I just wish they would extend the grace they say they believe in.
Justice. It's definitely a desire for justice. And justice by the world's standards say that I should forget trying to extend grace to Tom or even them and just bring action. But justice by God's standards say that I am to extend grace. What grace looks like right now is exactly what I am doing, have been doing since he broke the compromise, and will continue to do until things are made right.
Holiday hope. It's all I got right now.