SUGGESTING HOW TO DEAL WITH FRICTION:
One of the primary roles and goals for PASTORS AND ELDERS is to keep the friction that inevitably and unavoidable occurs in the church to a minimum and to direct that which does occur into positive directions and ends whenever possible.
WISE LEADERSHIP DOES THIS BY
1A RECOGNIZING AND BEING SENSITIVE TO FRICTION WHENEVER IT OCCURS
2A DIAGNOSING AND DEALING WITH CAUSES RATHER THAN JUST THE SYMPTOMS OF THE FRICTION.
3A SEEKING ALWAYS FOR CONCILIATION (unity in thought and feeling) RATHER THAN FOR COMPROMISE - that is, releasing the oil of the spirit (gal. 5:22-23) into the situation and applying "the wisdom from above." james 3:17).
4A APPLYING THE FOLLOWING PRINCIPLES AND PRACTICES.
- Focusing on issues and their Biblical implications rather than on personalities.
- Remembering that negatives do not erase negatives, only positive erase negatives
- Keeping a James 1:1-5 perspective - "considering it all joy when you encounter various trials....."
- Maintaining a focus on successful ministries and relationship - accentuating the positive. (Don’t let the noise of friction drown out that which is working quietly and smoothly).
- Knowing the history of conflicts - are they new or long-term and habitual?
- Realizing that everyone involved has contributed something to the problem. (Interpreting most "I can’t" to "I won’t).
- Keeping in perspective how the area of friction relates to the overall thrust of the church and to the cause of christ.
- Keeping congregational enthusiasm high by consistently setting and holding up short and long-term goals before the people.
- Crying for those who are driven away by friction - avoid the "good riddance" attitude.
- Maintaining unanimity within the leadership.
- Admonishing and disciplining the sinning member.
- Maintaining an open access to the leadership by the congregation.
- Discipline and building a better upcoming leadership in the next generation.
- Maintaining prudent forethought in regard to any anticipated change.
5A THERE ARE SOME NEGATIVE OR COUNTER-PRODUCTIVE ATTITUDES AND ACTIONS WHICH CHURCH LEADERS CAN INDULGE IN. AMONG THEM ARE:
- AN "IF WE IGNORE IT IT WILL GO AWAY" ATTITUDE.
- DEMANDING THAT FRICTION CEASE BETWEEN INDIVIDUALS OR GROUPS WITHOUT PROVIDING THE GUIDANCE TO DO SO.
- A "WE ‘VE GOT TO WIN THIS BATTLE AT ALL COST" ATTITUDE MAYBE TOO COSTLY.’
- A FRICTION CAN HAVE A POSITIVE OR CONSTRUCTIVE EFFECT ON A CHURCH BY
INIGATING A NEED FOR GREATER ORDER. ACTS 6:1-7
2B BEING AN AGENT OF UNIFICATION.
3B FORCING PEOPLE TO DEAL WITH UNSPIRITUAL ATTITUDES AND BEHAVIOR.
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For the glory of the Lord to be fulfilled in this matter that seems to be before us, there needs to be, in my opinion, a resolution that we will resolve this.
I cannot see a resolution in this matter without all parties in this matter working it out.
1 We need to reduce the tension with some mental and biblical analysis.
2 We need to settle, determine and state formally in a resolution about this matter.
3 We need to deal with questions or matters of uncertainty, conclusively. To resolve the questions before each person involved in this matter.
4 We need to cart away or dispel any doubts we may have in this matter.
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Drafted by Charles E. Whisnant, while pastor/teacher of First Baptist Church 1980-1996 updated July 2007
The philosophy was to deal with the problem when the noise was small. At the first sound of friction try to apply to oil of the Spirit as soon as possible.
Praying for six months was never the solution, the problems never just went away.
Some times there was success.
Sometimes I have been good at this, and other times I have forgotten the principles to be applied.