This is an email I wrote to several friends earlier today, and I felt it was something worth sharing with everyone.
Ok folks, let us be candid here.
Last I checked, we are all human. This means we all have "issues" of our own. They're all in different areas, based on different experiences, and are of varying degrees. None of us, if we are honest with ourselves, has it "more together" than the next person. This means that one person's issues are not "worse" than another's - much like sins are alike in God's eyes.
If we have a problem with someone else's "issues", or we think they are impacting ourselves or others negatively, then as Christians we should lovingly confront that person. Confrontations are to be one-on-one interactions, not group interactions. This is not a difficult concept, and I'm sure most of you know this already. However, what is difficult is following through with the actual confrontation, because most of us don't enjoy confrontation. After all, confrontations aren't exactly intended to give warm fuzzies to either party.
I think we all need to learn to confront better. The word "accountability" has come up recently a few times. Well, confrontation is one of the cornerstones of "accountability", yet too often it is something we Christians learn nothing about, and therefore do not practice well - or at all.
I also think we all need to learn to eliminate hearsay. This involves several things, including not repeating what others have said (obviously), and not making judgements based on things we have "heard" someone else said or did. This has come up with some of you in discussion recently, and like I said then: "I don't really care who said what about who, when they did, or why." Right or wrong (more often than not, probably "wrong"), things have already been spoken as hearsay, that cannot be changed. They may hurt, but that we cannot change. We can move forward, though, and make a concerted effort to eliminate it. I, for one, have developed a very low tolerance for it and will politely say "You shouldn't be telling me this" if something like that comes up.