Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Please explain this...

Person One and Person Two both are members at the same church.  However they have nothing to do with each other.  Oh, they know each other, but they rarely speak other than hi and bye, and they don't hang out in the same social circle.   They seem to have no desire to spend time together although they have had many opportunities to do so.  In some cases, Person One or Person Two may even express the fact that they have little interest in hanging out, being that aside from attending the same church they have little in common. 

One day Person One decides to leave the church.  Suddenly out of the blue Person One feels the urge to call Person Two and let them know they think it's important that they establish a relationship.  Upon their departure they contact Person Two to talk on the phone, extend invites for lunch or dinner, and send emails or facebook messages,among other things.  However, they sat in the same church for years and years and rarely spoke two words to each other.  Now there's a magnetizing force of sorts, drawing Person One toward Person Two.

Person One and Person Two could be any one of many people I've known over the years, or many of the friends I have who are also pastors and see this strange phenomenon happen time after time.  Is it really an "unsolved mystery?"

I have my theory about why this happens, but I'd love to hear yours.

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

My thoughts...for someone you've known over the years..
For me personally, having small children has made me want to go back and get in touch with all the kids I grew up in church with. And remember the good times that we had. And share those with my children now.
Deborah

Deanna said...

I understand that Deborah. In fact, many of the kids I grew up with in my home church (that I lost touch with some 25-35 years later - wow, that makes me sound old!) have now reconnected on facebook and caught up with what is going on in our lives and I think that's great. I am thinking maybe you have misunderstood what I'm saying in this post. I'm not talking about when people go back and get in touch with their childhood friends or those they went to church with back then, but when people (adults) leave a church now, they IMMEDIATELY get in touch with someone they have gone to church with all along but never been in relationship with or talked to. Love ya, girl!

Leanne said...

Oh, my gosh!!! This is TOTALLY happening in my church RIGHT NOW!!
In our case, it's because Person A [the one who left] is convinced that the majority of American churches are unbiblical and apparently the one he left our church to go to is the only one that has it right. So...he's now all buddy-buddy with people in the church who he didn't really hang out with before, but had some sort of connection to...mostly through his kids [his kids are friends with their kids; people who have taught his kids in the past - funny how I wasn't included on that list...LOL!!!!!]. Lo and behold, these people now all of a sudden have a beef with our pastor/the staff/other church leaders that Person A had a beef with.

It's really irritating, because now we're getting called into meetings/venting sessions and get to hear what's wrong with the church/leaders who are under us/whatever.

My SP pretty much shuts them down immediately and doesn't put up with it, but basically in my church's case, I am thinking that Person A feels that he is the only one doing things right and is trying to convince others of the error of their ways - and is so convinced by his "rightness," he doesn't really care who he hurts in the process or what the long-term consequences of his actions are going to be.

I'm sure there are other reasons, too...this is just what I have observed where I'm at!!

Deanna said...

Leanne, you have no idea how many times I've seen this scenario. It's not always because "the church is unbiblical"...sometimes it's of other supposed factors (emphasis on "supposed"). Seldom are these things based on reality.

People often comment on the drama that goes on with kids or teens but adults have no room to talk, in my experience. I have seen people in the same church who don't talk or like one another AT ALL for various reasons but upon one person leaving, they either try to influence the other person to leave (who had no prior inclination to leave AT ALL) or...perhaps they sensed in some way that the person "might" be unhappy in some way and so they just "have to contact them and test the waters" to find out how they are feeling. Of course if they sense a crack in their loyalty at all, an invitation is immediately extended to their new place.

The negative talk becomes the immediate glue in the relationship and commiserating together over this can usually serve as the bond they need to make the new relationship work for months to even a year or two. At some point down the road the relationship usually grows apart or if one person gets right with the Lord can even implode. Many times, unfortunately, one or both parties walk away from the Lord and the church at large completely.

Some people have no idea what they have just done to their lives and their families when they simply answer their phones...

God forbid that a pastor go up to Person A or B and warn them at all because you would just be seen as a drama king/queen or a control freak at best. So you just have to fast/pray and put it in God's hands. Possessing a shepherd's heart, this is one of the most painful things to sit back and watch as you pray...how horrible it is to watch your sheep go off a cliff and know that if you were to say anything it would only make it worse.

Ruth, PA said...

OK, you asked for it!! LOL IMHO, this is the work of the Enemy. I so believe as we draw closer to the rapture, that we'll see this increased. I've see this as a PK all my life, but not to the extent it is today. If someone leaves a church, they should do so quietly w/o raising a stink and trying not to be a "pied piper" of sorts. Sometimes God does lead us away from a situation into another. But when someone leaves and then tries to split the church...this is not of THE Spirit...but a spirit. Personally, I would like to hear more of pastors and church authority rebuking this from the pulpit. Even naming names if needed. But I do realize this is extremely difficult! The saints, especially the babes in Christ, need to be warned of the destruction that the enemy can cause by dividing the body. And I've seen so many who have been "A" fall away from the body.

I have AG friends (pastor and wife) who had a situation in the last year. The worship team leader and church secretary (who was married) were having an affair. Instead of the church getting rid of them, they got rid of the pastor and his family. He would not back down. Because of his stand, the congregation turned on him because of the "love" the congregation had for the two.

Deanna, the closer we get to Christ, the less gray and more black and white life becomes. But I do not envy pastor's jobs. If the members of the congregation had more backbone, maybe the pastor's jobs would not be so difficult. Satan is at work. He is the destroyer...and he'll destroy from within if he has willing vessels!!!

Ruth, from PA with a big mouth LOL

PS-Just want you to know we are no longer on FB. Waaaay too much drama!! I'll keep in touch through email or blog! Love ya! :)

Deanna said...

Ruth, could not agree with you more on all you've said.

Leanne said...

IMHO, kid/teen drama in the church is a direct reflection of adult drama, and not the other way around!!!

As a children's pastor, it is especially frustrating to see kids acting out this drama, because I can't exactly go up to a kid and say, "I know your mom/dad has this opinion, but they're wrong..."

Or when a kid comes up to me and asks, "Why doesn't so-and-so come to kids' church anymore?" I had a little girl in tears because one of her close friends was being yanked out of our church because the dad didn't like our "modern" worship. The three of us prayed together and we hugged her goodbye on her last day with us, but I know that both girls were confused as to why they weren't allowed to be friends anymore....

I usually just answer as honestly as I possibly can, and then try to redirect the conversation...but people need to understand that this church-hopping business affects their kids deeply.

Deanna said...

Oh my...does. it. ever.

People have no clue how much they affect their kids when they do not stay planted. A church family is often closer to a child than their natural family. They rip them from them, and then they wonder why they are not serving the Lord years later. Perhaps it has something to do with the fact that the church is part of one of the most traumatic events of their life - being ripped away from them although they were a child and not able to effectively articulate it at the time although many children act out in other ways with certain behaviors that leave parents scratching their heads...

And sometimes they even blame the church! [sigh] Or they think, "this is for their own good...they'll get over it in time."

Hmmmmm

Anonymous said...

Deanna, I have seen this happen over and over and over again. It would appear that now they have a common enemy or complaint--us and the church. It's such a shame.

It has happened repeated here with people who say that they need to "start over", but FB other bitter people to see where they are going, maybe hook up for dinner, and "vent". My only solace with it at my church, is that while they were here, we taught them what God's Word says about gossip, malice and slander, and now they are responisible before God. But it still makes my heart sad.

Deanna said...

Anon, yes I agree -- it's the common enemy issue at the core. If only they could bind together against Satan but instead they bind together against a man/woman of God and or a church and fail to see how this behavior is to destructive and what they are bringing upon themselves and their families.