Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Attacks via the Web

I live in sports Mecca- Texas Rangers, Dallas Cowboys, Dallas Mavericks, Dallas Stars, TCU, and a host of other teams! One thing around here is the fact of life that the fans are not silent. They are very vocal. In fact I have learned this, If you're not being booed, you've got to ask yourself if you're in the game.’

It is no different in the ministry! The ‘fans’ will let you know their feelings! We all have seen the websites and blogs branding many Christian pastors, writers, teachers, singers, etc. as heretics. Some of my favorites have been accused in this modern day witch-hunt under the banner ‘contending for the faith.’ I search Google often to see if I have been included in their number. I guess I would wear the branding as a distinction of honor!

Even Facebook has become a vehicle to attack His Church- it amazes me the tools and fools Satan uses to achieve this sort of ungodly work. I know a Pastor that had whole threads on Facebook devoted to him in an attempt to character assassinate him and the work of God in his life and church. What should have been settled in private is now open to ridicule, humiliation, and defamation by immature people. As Executive Director of Liberty Fellowship, I am afraid that I am hearing about this way too often nowadays! Pastors everywhere are being victimized. The pen (Facebook) is becoming mightier than the sword!

As a Pastor I have had my fair share of personal attacks and criticism over the years. What continually amaze me are the ones who generally foster this contemptuous behavior. My brother in law reminded me one time, ‘People are going to blow in, blow up, and blow out.’

And therein lays the rub, the attacks generally come from those that at one time were the most loyal, supportive and vocal people. ‘This is the best church!’ ‘You are a great pastor.’

But then something happens and they are no more. Hurt people hurt people. They often times hurt to try to get even. Other times they strike out to try to prove they are right.

Regardless the dynamics and the reasons, their embittered souls take delight in demeaning others and the church. It is a kind of narcissistic gratification!

A vain man through pride causeth debate, And with the counselled is wisdom.
Proverbs 13.10 Young's Literal Translation

To be a coach, player, president, or a pastor takes one with tough skin. In fact, it takes rhino skin!

What do you do in times of vicious attack?
  1. Don’t be amazed but be assured the attacks will come.
  2. Don’t be amazed as to whom they come through.
  3. Remember to pray for them and their hurt
  4. Remember pride is at the source of their contention.
  5. Don’t let your pride lead you to retaliation.
  6. Humble yourself before God and pour out your complaint to Him.
  7. Don’t read their Facebook (blogs, websites)!
  8. And, finally, don’t be surprised by what new device Satan may use next to attack you and God’s church.
To my Pastor friends that must endure the unending scrutiny and silliness of men be assured of my prayers. If you need someone to talk to, call me or email me. My sympathetic ears are yours!


Greg Nemer said...

What an encouraging article David,

I've found that people who are accomplishing the most are the ones who are being criticized the most.

So if we're being attacked verbally it's probably because we're actually DOING something for God.

Not everyone is going to agree with us or our point of views.

As Christians however we need to learn to that the wise are those who keep their mouth shut.

That includes facebook comments.

steveguate said...

Salvation makes possible intimate life in the Holy Spirit, which brings death the works of the flesh. Many who read Gal.5:19-21 overlook rivalries, superiority, envy, jealousy, discord, arguments, dissension, anger and hatred as a way of living that exclude us from God's kingdom.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for publishing this article in the Liberty Fellowship news letter. I enjoyed it and it encouraged me! If you are not being attacked by the enemy, you probably haven't become a threat. I'm convinced our success in ministry is determined by our level of obedience to God, and our pain threshold.