Thursday, January 8, 2015

Search for the Lost Sheep, but Don't Push Them Off the Cliff

A friend of mine who had been inactive in the Church for a while made the following comment to me: 
There are a few people who go in search of the lost sheep only to end up accidentally pushing the sheep off a cliff.

I agreed with him, since I have seen it happen on more than once occasion. Some people just aren't good shepherds, mostly out of incorrect assumptions and an unwillingness or inability to ask the person(s) involved and sometimes due to particular personality traits. 

Also, I've known two people in my life who had official finding responsibilities and weren't pushing accidentally. They were looking for reasons, any reasons, to remove people from the rolls of the Church. Luckily, they were told to knock it off when their leaders found out what they were doing.

When it's the leader doing the pushing . . .

Most people want to treat others like they want to be treated. That's gets wonky sometimes, since some people want "tough love", but most people who are active, if they think about it, would not want to be pushed out and removed from the rolls of the Church - so most people don't look for excuses to do that to others, even if, because they just can't understand inactivity in any other way, they have to find reasons and explanations for inactivity that reflect badly on those who don't attend. 

That frustrates me to a degree, but I understand that those people just can't see and understand the real reasons in most cases. They are sincere and as loving as they can be with their limited light and knowledge, just like I am. Aside from the intentional cliff-pushers, I can't be mad at them. They are doing the best they can - and they really do care or they wouldn't be trying.

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