Dealing with drama.
Matthew 18:15-17 (NIV)
15 “If your brother or sister sins, go and point out their fault, just between the two of you. If they listen to you, you have won them over. 16 But if they will not listen, take one or two others along, so that ‘every matter may be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses.’ 17 If they still refuse to listen, tell it to the church; and if they refuse to listen even to the church, treat them as you would a pagan or a tax collector.
It’s important to note the Scripture in another place says that a wise man overlooks an offense. Wisdom is not wholly contained in confrontation. Sometimes, it means just letting things go. To call out people for everything they do wrong, even if our intentions are good, will only produce feelings of being judged in them. Pointing out sin too quickly ruins our witness and does not reflect the love of Christ.
At the same time, drama is destructive even to the one causing it. To always let things go is not loving. There are times when people need confrontation. Jesus confronted the rich, young ruler. He confronted the woman at the well. He confronted Peter. Each was confronted differently. Jesus’ response to each was different. Zacchaeus offered to give back half of his possessions to the poor, but Jesus’ demand of the rich, young ruler was to give all of his money away. Confrontation looks different in each situation.
So when should you deal with destructive drama in others?
The key is our confrontation must be motivated not by our own personal offense, but out of our love for the other person whose behavior is ruining their own life. It’s not just that what they did was hurtful and harmful to us or those we love. Our motive must be to see them find a better way for themselves. If our motivation is our own self-protection, our heart is not in the right place to confront anyone. First, we must have the spirit of Christ who said, “Father, forgive them for they know not what they do.”
Once we have moved our heart into a place of love for them, we are ready. If we find ourselves pointing out everything someone is doing wrong, more than likely, our heart is not in the right place. We are in self-protection mode either to keep them from hurting us directly or to keep them from hurting our reputation because we somehow have attached their behavior to what people think about us.
Dealing with drama, confronting sin must be an act of selfless love. If we are not there yet, it is wise to overlook the offense.
Prayer: Lord, I ask Your Holy Spirit to give me the heart and wisdom to know when and how to confront others and when to let it go. Amen.