I’ve seen it happen again and again in churches. So often, we are only willing to hear what we are willing to hear. Consequently men and women go through life repeating the same mistakes again and again.
1. A college student erupts in anger toward his parents and various other family members. At the same time, he wonders why his dating relationships seem to to have disappointing endings. His fiancee saw how he treated his mom and dad and wisely became very cautions about continuing their relationship. Yet, in his eyes, he had no problem with his temper.
2. A young mother is inconsistent with her young children. One moment she is angry over a child’s misbehavior. Thirty minutes later she is ignoring the same behavior. On one occasion, she and her husband laughed the very behavior that put their daughter in “time-out” the evening before .
3. A husband and wife continue to increase their credit card debt. In fact, their credit card bill with its interest and late payments devours a sizable portion of their income each month. Much of their debt is due to impulsive spending and spur of the moment purchases. Yet, they get angry whenever anyone in their church brings up the subject of debt.
Dallas Willard once said that “Pain is what you experience when you bump into reality.”
Some people do not want to deal with the reality of their lives. They might seek help in order to make them feel better. Some people are more interested in feeling better than in changing their own behavior. Yet, it is often their own behaviors that impact their marriage, their children, their extending family, and those at work or church.
You might ask:
- Do I really want to know the truth about me?
- What is the cost to my family and to other relationships as I avoid facing the truth about myself?
- Do I welcome the thinking and the wisdom of those who love me most or do I push them away?