Problem People and People with Problems

Every church has them.

Every church, every time she gathers, is filled with people with problems and problem people.

They are not the same people.

People with problems are people who are hurting, searching, and needing guidance. People with problems are needing God to show up through the church to comfort, heal, correct, nurture, and to love them.

Problem people, on the other hand, are a totally different breed. Problem people really don’t want to solve their problems. They are not seeking guidance or direction. They are not seeking God’s correction. They are seeking attention.

Guess which one of these two are louder? People with problems rarely want to share their problems with others. And too often, they are hurting in isolation. Problem people? They thrive on attention and sympathy by telling as many people as possible. They will schedule meeting after meeting with the pastoral staff, leaders, anyone who is willing to listen and give them the time and attention they so seek.

The leadership task is in having the wisdom to distinguish between the two. How we deal with the two are different. But in the end, both people with problems and problem people need God to show up to heal them. The reason why we act and behave the way we do is because we are all hurting, seeking, and needing guidance and correction.

May God use you and your church to bring healing and wholeness to the people God has put you in charge over.


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