Just a thought on Christian community:
Though genuine accountability may be a tough pill to swallow, it should never leave an aftertaste of judgement or condemnation. Becoming a transparent church requires us to rely upon each other in overcoming sin. “Rugged individualism” may be a western ideal, but it is in direct conflict with the notion of “the Body of Christ.” Working through problems and difficulties alone makes true community difficult. We often isolate ourselves and cope internally rather than embracing the gift of community.
The Creator so beautifully designed our bodies so that they are able to heal themselves. Similarly, the body of Christ is designed to heal itself.
James 5:16 says Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.
Many of us are spiritually sick because we don’t (a) confess our sins in community and (b) pray together about our sins in community. We are missing so much healing due to our inability to be transparent amongst our brothers and sisters.
Am I my brother or sister’s keeper?
Galatians 6 (NLT) suggests that “if another believer is overcome by some sin, you who are godly (mature) should gently and humbly help that person back onto the right path.
And be careful not to fall into the same temptation yourself. 2 Share each other’s burdens, and in this way obey the law of Christ. 3 If you think you are too important to help someone, you are only fooling yourself. You are not that important.”
So the reality is, that rather than CASTING shade on fallen folk, we should BECOME a shade and cover them. I’m very wary of people who celebrate the downfall of others. Christians should be in the restoration business, with gentleness and humility. If we drop our stones, perhaps our hands will be open enough to help someone up.