There are times when we have a bad attitude that is contrary to the image we try to project. In other words, we act one way and feel another. We are careful about the manner in which we act (we would be ashamed to act as we felt), but our bad attitude is showing. Sometimes that is on purpose– we want to send a signal that we are displeased, so we get in our verbal jabs or snide remarks– usually only to the extent that we can explain them away by saying, “I didn’t mean anything. I was just joking”. But at other times we aren’t even aware that our ill feelings are showing. We think nobody will notice– but they do.
Pastors can often see things that you don’t see, or things you think they don’t see. And your ___ is showing! You fill in the blank. It might be one thing for one person and something else for another. Whatever it is, whether you see it or not, “Your __ is showing!” I don’t mention it to embarrass or hurt you, but to help. If something doesn’t change you will end up hurting and/or embarrassing yourself. You will also hurt others and harm the church. I simply want to encourage you to make some changes before that happens. Even if you are successful in hiding your your bad attitude from others, God knows, and that makes it a serious problem. If your search comes up empty ask God to open your eyes. I’ve got a feeling that we all have something that needs to be fixed. Even as I write this, I am very much aware that I have faults that are obvious to others –so this isn’t all about you.
Believe me, having so many faults of my own, it isn’t easy or enjoyable to write this. But if you are a pastor or a parent, and you care about your flock or family, sometimes you have to do what you can to avert a disaster. If you think I’m talking about you there is a good chance that you are right. If your conscious is bothering you there is usually a reason for it and that constitutes a need to do something about it and that involves confession (1 John 1:9). The best advice I can give you is found in Eph. 4:31-31, “Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice: And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.”
I feel I need to close with this word of explanation. We could talk for an hour about all the good things in the church and there is a time for that, but there must also be a time when we talk about the negative. Prevention is better than cure, and that is my motivation in writing this. Depending on the circumstances– criticism and correction can be more valuable than commendations. Pretending all is well doesn’t make it so. If we ever get to the place where we see no room for improvement, nor have any desire to be better, we are in an awful condition. So I hope you will see this as something positive, rather than painful. Think about it. Someone is!