I have had a relationship with God through faith in Jesus Christ for almost 10 years now. I have graduated from Bible College, and am now in process of finishing my Masters degree at a Seminary. I have been serving as the senior pastor of a church for almost 3 years. One thing that I have encountered in local church ministry is the way that people try with incredible strain to avoid making other people mad (I am not talking about a believer being a stumbling block or truly being offensive – which happens). What I am referring to is the lack of biblical confrontation (with a spirit of love, grace, and humility). There is so much carnality that exists in local churches that is ignored by those who are walking with God, just to keep the peace. The Bible instructs us to “be diligent to preserve the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.” But, it does not instruct us to ignore sinful behavior for the purpose of keeping people happy! This practice of ignoring sinful behavior has in reality not preserved the unity of the Spirit! It has allowed sin to be in the camp, and also for us to be pleasers of men instead of pleasers of God!
Paul teaches us that we are to help people be obedient to the Word of God. “We urge you, brethren, admonish the unruly, encourage the fainthearted, help the weak, be patient with everyone” (1 Thess 5:14). This is what believers should be doing, in a spirit of love and humility. This will help us to be chasing the approval of God, and as a result will lead to His blessing because we have obeyed!