A brother offended is more unyielding than a strong city, and quarreling is like the bars of a castle. Proverbs 18:19
Sometimes the incredible weight and influence that leaders carry in the lives of those who look up to them scares me. I’m not scared just as one who has been hurt by leadership, but it now scares me as one in leadership. The more I understand my own fallibility and weaknesses, the more grace I have for the past and present leadership in my life. But with that understanding also comes the knowledge that I may in turn hurt those who look up to me. I want to emphatically echo Paul ‘May it never be!’
In my prayers and hopes that I would never be the cause of others wounds and offenses, I cannot deny the fact that even innocently or unintentionally there still may be a time when I do offend someone I love or lead.
Then He (Jesus) said to the disciples, “It is impossible that no offenses should come, but woe to him through whom they do come! Luke 17:1
In the Gospel of Luke, Jesus even tells his disciples that offense and causing pain to others will happen.
Lord, may they never come through me!
But what if they do come through me?
This month I’ve been teaching on offense and being offended at the Discipleship House, and how to navigate the walls offense brings (Proverbs 18:19). Leaders are supposed to be the ones that help lead the people they influence to the Throne of Grace. Every Christian leader and pastor’s goal should be to point their people to Jesus.
But stuff happens. Leaders sin, and through their sin wound others. Or leaders are innocent of intentionally wronging, but are misunderstood. Any of these can lead to hurt, pain, and offense.
However, it doesn’t have to end there. With offense, pain, and disappointment, comes an unexpected treasure – the pain that drives us to Jesus alone. When others fail us, it leaves Jesus.
My prayer is to always point people to Jesus. But should I fail and hurt them – then by God’s grace let the offense become the thing that brings them to Jesus. What matters is that they get to the Throne. Jesus is healing, He is life, and I am not.
has failed you, and not been worthy of your trust – I am so sorry. But please, if their life or influence was supposed to lead you towards Jesus and be His example to you, and it wasn’t – then let their mistake lead you to Him. You can never loose before the Throne. Just get there. Please.
“When I Offend You” is Day # 16 of “In Deep” a 31 Days Series