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Three Huts

posted Apr 8, 2014, 11:02 AM by First Baptist


 

Once upon a time, a man was stranded on a deserted island. He was stranded there for several years. Finally, a ship came into view, and the man frantically waved and got the skipper’s attention.

 

The skipper asked the castaway, “What are those three huts you’ve built?” The man replied, “That first hut is my house.”

 

“What’s the next hut?” asked the skipper. “That’s my church.”

 

“Okay, what about the third hut?”

 

“Oh,” the castaway answered solemnly, “that’s where I USED to go to church.”

 

We live in an age where “church hopping” is quite common. There are many reasons why a person might change churches. The most common is: he/she moves away. Sadly, we’ve experienced that recently. The Gillespie’s and Lucas’s come immediately to mind.

 

The second most common reason for changing churches is conflict. This is where a member leaves a church due to a misunderstanding, disagreement or offense of some kind.

 

When conflict occurs (not if, but when), here is some advice from a 4th century Christian leader:

 

“If a trial [with another person] comes upon you in the place where you live, do not leave that place when the trial comes. Wherever you go, you will find that what you are running from is ahead of you.”

 

In the 12th century, Anselm of Canterbury compared a restless believer to a tree than can’t thrive because it is “frequently transplanted or often disturbed.” Anselm warns: “If he often moves from place to place at his own whim, he never achieves stability with roots of love.”

 

Again, conflict is inevitable in a church our size. In any conflict, there are 3 types (or categories) of responses:

 

1)      Attack responses – used by people who are more interested in winning a conflict than in preserving a relationship.

2)      Escape responses – used by people who are more interested in avoiding a conflict than in resolving it.

3)      Peacemaking responses – used by people who wish to resolve the conflict while also preserving the relationship.

 

Which category of response do YOU employ? Only one of them glorifies God and, at the same time, helps us grow into Christ-likeness.

 

With appreciation,

 

Pastor Dan

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