Overcorrection...

It can happen when you're driving - taking a second to change the radio, talk to a passenger, grab the cell phone, & WHOOAH, you're headed off the road or into the lane next to you. What do you do? Overcorrect - turn the steering wheel. HARD. In the opposite direction. This can turn out to be just as dangerous, as it takes you from danger in one side of the lane to danger on the other side of it - it can destabilize the car, & cause it to roll, & if you're going fast enough, to do an A-Team style flip.

A friend of mine in a land far, far, away quit his job at a church a few months ago. He had put his notice several months earlier, so his impending departure wasn't a surprise to him or to anyone around him. What led to his resignation? Disconnection from the church as a whole, overwork, lack of fulfillment, clash in value systems, dissatisfaction with where life was heading, rapidly, to name a few. Leaving was a good move for him - it probably could have happened sooner - getting out seemed to be a good answer that would allow for good healing & some healthy life, church, & especially God-perspectives to settle.

What's happened since June, however, isn't heading in that direction at all - he's not going to church much, & when asked about finding a point of life involvement w/in church, the response that's given is one of disdain & disgust. Bitterness & frustration seem to be the main bubbling over by-products of where he is now. Seems to be an overcorrection. What I mean is that he's gone from an unhealthy, frustrating situation working for a church to a place of equal unhealth - he's worked at a church & it was a bad experience. Now, it'll be a cold day in Hades before he makes "the mistake" of getting connected & involved in another place. Overcorrecting from a dangerous place to another dangerous place.

This happens a lot - I've seen it in many, many people (those that have been vocational, bi-vocational, & heavily involved in church) that get burned or burn themselves, & then think the answer is to do the opposite of what it is they did before. If a lot of "church" was bad, then cutting it back to next to zero should be better. What actually seems to be happening, however, is that the individuals are being cut off (by themselves) from the very life & health giving relationships that they need to nurture in order to get healing... Bugs me.

2 launchings into the blogosphere....:

shontell said...

It has too long since I have visited those other blogs out there, and reading this makes me miss them more. How very sad for your friend and all of his friends that have to watch him, without offending and without saying anything just in case he lumps all of you in the "church" category. There arent really good answers to dealing with these issues either. no matter what you say will be full of pressure. You may as well kick him in the shin, call him a dummy and run away. That is the best way to show him love, honesty from afar. oh yah, and prayer...that stuff is great!!

scoey-d said...

I did kick him in the shin...No, really I didn't. But I wanted to.

I did talk to him about separating relationship with God from church work, & separating rough church experiences from the "staying in the process" in church... Therefore, I did get lumped in with the "that's what I thought 'someone like you' would say." Like I get brownie points if he's in a church & if he's serving in an area or like God gives me "KUDOS" for harping on people about church involvement. I could ramble on... Actually, I think I just did.