How to Deal with Disappointment, In Church Leaders?
It is challenging to learn the faults of a person you have come to appreciate.
God word tells us,” In fear of the Lord there is strong confidence”(Proverbs 14:26).
Knowing we can find confidence in the Lord is comforting. We must understand to never have more confidence in man than God. But knowing this does not make it easy when someone we respect disappoints us. When leaders of the Church reveal human qualities, it can disillusion us because we have come to trust and respect our Pastor. However, not all is lost; there is hope.
We are bombarded with messages of how to deal with disappointment and confidence. Everywhere we are advised to take this course, dress this way or speak out about our feelings. However, you know this is not the solution to the problems you face. Real confidence comes from God. He is the Creator and sustainer of the world and everything in it. We must look to God for our needs, even faith.
But you probably are thinking, “I already have faith.” But do you have faith in God to give the burden you now carry to help rebuild your confidence in the person who has disappointed or caused your trust to wane? Prayers and guidance is the best solution for the problem you now face. Why? Because God can comfort and heal your disappointment if you trust Him. He can even cure the hurt you are feeling causing you to forgive, as He forgives.
God must be the judge of others, not you, for He will be fair and just without human emotions. The character anchored in God’s love and faithfulness must never fail to be your source of forgiveness and mercy towards those who disappoint or disillusion you.
People May Disappoint Us
People may disappoint us, but God will never disappoint or forsake us if we believe He is always present and ready to help with even the smallest of our concerns and hurts. God does not feel the way our friends, family, or even Pastor about our life or the difficulties we experience. Look to the Lord for everything you need no matter how minute the need, for God is the Provider of all our needs. We seek God to assistance when we need financial help and healing. But God wants us to allow Him to be the primary source in everything we do! Now you ask, “How do I ask God for help?”
Read the word of God to know he cares for you, for the scriptures tell us before we make any decisions we must seek God first,” In everything you do, put God first, and he will direct you and crown your efforts with success”
(Proverbs 3:6). So not only in healing and finances do should we seek God but in our hurts and disappointments we must reach out in prayer to our Savior.
From experience, I know-how disappointment in a Church leader can bring about disillusionment and trust. As I write this article, I am experiencing disillusion. Someone I respect has shown their human side, prejudice and enlisted me to join in the problem against the beliefs of the Living Church of God, because of their teachings, which differs from what they believe and does not accept the right of this Church to worship as the Constitution grants us. However, I have no problem with their instructions; everything I learned or read is scriptural in the Bible.
My church leader advised he would not allow the teachings in my syllabus, telling me my class, scheduled to begin Saturday would not be approved unless I remove the links in question from my material because he had a problem with the Living Church of God. He then proceeded to advise me not to visit or read their website as it might hurt me, and I should be careful. I thought to resort to scare tactics and felt the leader was ordering me to believe and think as he does about the Living Church of God, which I am sure is against my religious freedom.
However, since I did not agree with his hatred and prejudice against this congregation, I canceled the class. I could not remove the links suggested because after researching and verifying the text and written content, I found nothing to be incorrect or unscriptural as I am an ordained minister, knowledgeable of the contextualization of scripture. I understand the context of the written word, and there was nothing wrong with the links or information in my course. My Church leader was the problem.
I cannot say how disappointed I was to encounter the shortcoming of a man I had come to respect and admire. So when I say, “Place God first in everything you do, even in choosing where you worship. I from which I speak! ” Remember, leaders of the Church have human frailties and prejudices, the same as the world.
When you encounter leaders with these shortcomings, prayer and forgiveness are the tools needed to overcome your disillusionment and disappointment. We must not allow the hurt to overwhelm or cause us to give up on serving God. Take some time away from the situation to pray and seek God, asking that your heart be open to forgive. Also, never forget to ask God to show you if there is something you did to cause the problem and be forgiven if the issue is with YOU!
Three Ways to Overcome Disappointment
Sometimes its best to distance yourself from the situation and person who had caused the disappointment. Why?
1. Distance and time help with the healing process and allows time for you to accept and understand what you have experienced.
2. To learn and overcome your disappointment and become comfortable with the fact that your church leader’s human frailties and prejudices. You can accept your leader’s shortcomings through prayer and fasting, asking for strength to overcome the hurt and disappointment. Ask to understand the situation and be willing to acknowledge it may not be the situation but the person involved in the case. Once you have identified the problem, then you can begin the healing process.
Note: I firmly advise never “Church Hop”! Why? Because the problem is not with the whole Church, the problem is with the leader and his humanity, not the congregation. If you need time to process what has occurred, Take It!
3. Use your disappointment to learn and grow! But applaud your efforts, because you took the risk of becoming vulnerable to hurt. Turn your frustration into an opportunity to overcome the obstacle and to regain confidence in your leader, understanding none of us is without faults or prejudices, even You!
As Christians, the Bible is clear about “forgiveness of those who have wronged or hurt us.” Remember, it is not the person whose peace we are responsible for, but it is our unity of mind we are accountable to achieve, then forgiveness and love will follow.
I wish I could say I have fully accomplished step 3, but I have yet to complete this problematic step, and I am still working on regaining trust and confidence in my church leader because I see him as a great leader, and now understand he is a man and is human. Remember, God will never let you down, and your confidence will return.