BEST OF TQFG: An offense unaddressed is a relationship lost.

Photo courtesy of Sara.

We hope you enjoy this re-post from January 13, 2014. Be blessed! The Today’s Quote From God Team

Moreover if thy brother shall trespass against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone: if he shall hear thee, thou hast gained thy brother. – Matthew 18:15, KJV

Dr. Ron Comfort, Founder of Ambassador Baptist College and an evangelist for roughly sixty years, was speaking at a revival meeting at a church in the midwestern United States. During the week of meetings, the pastor of the church told Dr. Comfort the sad story of a broken friendship. Some twelve years earlier, the pastor and a former deacon of the church had a falling out. After years of very close fellowship, the deacon and his family left the church without warning, and the pastor had no idea what caused the rift.

The Holy Spirit prompted the pastor to drop in on his former friend while Dr. Comfort was visiting. The two men dropped in on the deacon, and after exchanging a few pleasantries, the pastor asked his former church member why he had left the congregation.

“Well,” said the deacon, “you asked for it. You conducted my daughter’s wedding, and you did something at the wedding that offended me, my wife, and everyone in the audience. I determined right then and there never to come to your church again because of the offense you did to our family.”

The pastor responded by explaining why he had done what he had done, and after hearing the explanation, the deacon’s jaw dropped. With great remorse, the deacon said, “Pastor, I had no idea why you did what you did. Now, it makes perfect sense! I’ve been backsliding and out of church all of these years because of a simple misunderstanding!”

Oftentimes when people offend us, they don’t mean to offend, and many may not even realize that they have offended. Regardless of what we may think about the intentions behind the offense – and whether or not our suspicions are proven to be true – we should follow the teaching of Matthew 18:15 by reaching out to those who have brought pain into our lives. By explaining to them how they have hurt us, we open up a dialogue that can lead to understanding, and that understanding may very well be the difference between preserving a relationship and ending one.

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