RECONCILE NOW! A ministry of The Well By The Sea
Christ’s Command for Unity Within Your Christian Fellowship
Has a fellow churchgoer sinned against you, causing you to be angry, hurt, bitter, or distrustful? Are you concerned that a sin against you or others will damage the fellowship of your brothers and sisters at The Well? God doesn’t want it that way, and Jesus was very clear in his commands of how to deal with sins (and we are all sinners) within the church:
15 “If your brother sins, go and show him his fault in private; if he listens to you, you have won your brother. 16 But if he does not listen to you, take one or two more with you, so that by the mouth of two or three witnesses every fact may be confirmed. 17 If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church; and if he refuses to listen even to the church, let him be to you as a Gentile and a tax collector.
3 Be on your guard! If your brother sins, rebuke him; and if he repents, forgive him. 4 And if he sins against you seven times a day, and returns to you seven times, saying, ‘I repent,’ forgive him.”
Clearly, Jesus calls upon us to “go and show” our brother or sister in Christ their sin if it’s unrecognized and unrepented. BUT, the purpose of that “go and show” is not to make ourselves feel better, not to help us get over feelings of anger, hurt or mistrust, but the purpose is to bring that person into repentance, bring reconciliation, and bring unity to the Church body. RECONCILE NOW! is not an avenue to embrace and enable self-pity, which we are clearly admonished from in the Bible which tells us to rejoice in all things, even our sufferings, to turn the other cheek, to yield to others. This is NOT about getting our way, being heard in our complaints, or gossiping with others about the sins of those who have ticked us off or hurt us somehow. Instead, RECONCILE NOW! is about making sure the body of Christ at The Well By The Sea does not allow the devil in the door by hiding divisions or allowing the sometimes natural consequences of sin (hurt, fear, bitterness, mistrust) to fester and cause us as a body to lose God’s power contained in our obedience and unity. If you are trying to bring a brother or sister out of unrepented sin and restore unity to the body of Christ but don’t know where to start, the RECONCILE NOW! ministry is probably a good place to start. [If you can’t let go of hurt or fear or mistrust, perhaps the prayer ministers of the church on Sunday at communion can help (or if more deep healing prayer is needed, prayer by appointment at the Chapel by the Sea is available)].
So, Father Tom has established this ministry as a place for you to seek help in obeying Jesus’ commands as outlined in Matthew 18 and Luke 17 above. If you need help – if you have some special reason you don’t feel comfortable addressing the person who has sinned against you or need some guidance on how to address the problem, this ministry could help. If you have already taken the first step called for above and addressed the other person to no avail, this ministry could help. If you are questioning whether you are mis-interpreting the other person’s behavior or are concerned that what you think is sin is just over-sensitivity/self-pity on your part, this ministry could help. If you need help approaching your brother or sister in humility with an eye toward repentance (instead of in anger with an eye toward vengeance), or you need help speaking the truth in love, this ministry could help. We are excited to be a part of keeping The Well as a loving, unified, and powerful family of believers fulfilling our mission to to bring families and individuals into the fullness and love of the abundant life in Jesus Christ.
Please get in touch with Glenn or Karolan Ohanesian at firstname.lastname@example.org to RECONCILE NOW! And let’s make sure our wonderful church continues to be open and receptive to God’s direction and blessing!