Hurt feelings. Misunderstood words. Angry reactions. It happens daily to all of us, so why should we expect that the church is immune to such situations? We have this expectation of the church staff or pastoral team to handle every situation perfectly. Sadly, many have used a difficult encounter with church personnel as an inefficient excuse to fall away from church, quit serving on a ministry team, or gossip incessantly about a sister or brother in Christ. Truth is, we’re all human. We all make mistakes. The pastor does. Your womens’ ministry leader does. The Sunday school teacher isn’t perfect.
Can we all just recognize that Satan’s master plan is to kill, steal, and destroy? Can we lay down our pride and expectation that we be handled with kid gloves and get busy about our Father’s business? There is no better place for Satan’s ploys of destruction to run rampant than in the church. Why wouldn’t he target us there? If he can divide and conquer, we are less effective. If we are busy licking wounds because a sister in Christ mistakenly, unintentionally spoke to us a bit harsh, how can we counsel with the single mom in the corner who truly needs it?
Too often, we spend time sulking because we didn’t like what “they” said or how they said it. We become preoccupied with the misspoken word or how we are handled and far less occupied with how much hurting is going on around us. Ministry leaders, body of Christ, can we just extend the same grace Christ afforded us to others in ministry and keep on keeping on?
Understand that hurting people hurt others. There will be times when you fall under undue criticism or become the topic of gossip. There will be times when a mutiny of sorts may take place in your single moms ministry. It can be devastating. It can cut deep, especially when you are pouring blood, sweat, and tears into single moms’ ministry. But stay strong. Fight the good fight of faith. Recognize that you are not battling flesh and blood. The enemy is at work. Recognize that the Lord fights your battles, so you don’t have to be offended, hurt, or even defensive regarding an attack. Guard your heart above all else. Forgive quickly. Recognize that the venom spewed at you is often not for you, rather a past hurt that has long gone unresolved.
God has called you to this position for such a time as this. Stay the course. Grow your faith. Walk in wisdom and maturity. You are making a difference and we need you in the fight for single moms’ lives and that of their precious kiddos.
Jennifer Maggio is the award-winning author of several books. She is founder of the global nonprofit, The Life of a Single Mom Ministries and her personal story has been used to inspire thousands throughout the United States and beyond. She has been featured in countless media venues and has a passion to see hurting people live a life of total freedom in Christ. For more information, visit http://www.thelifeofasinglemom.com.
The Life of a single Mom is a national, faith-based, nonprofit that exists to see that no single mom walks alone. Our primary focus is in helping churches and communities launch single mom’s ministries and have done so more than 1,500 times! Our support groups connect 71,000 single mothers each year to a local church. We are a one-stop shop for all things single mom ministry related. For more information, visit http://www.thelifeofasinglemom.com.