Fear of Offending Others

I got a lesson in fearless this week.

A Facebook friend wrote some courageous thoughts about how the world appears from her perspective. Latter she said she probably lost a few friends because she was so brutally honest and vulnerable.

I reassured her. Real friends don’t walk away because you’re honest. Anyone who deserts you in those circumstances wasn’t really a friend, right? And then I realized how easy, hollow, and empty those words sounded to me.

Why?

If I’m honest, I’m often afraid to say exactly what I think here. I soften the words, talk around the difficult issues, and avoid stating what might be controversial opinions.

I can offer all sorts of excuses. I don’t want to be divisive or become a stumbling block. Those are legitimate concerns, but they’re not the real reasons.

I’m afraid—of offending you, of what you’ll think. I’m afraid of losing you if I say the wrong thing.

I’m not proud of that. God didn’t create us to live in fear. A blog about following Jesus ought to be a place of vulnerability and trust.

But there’s my friend’s harsh experience. And if you don’t believe Christians will attack someone for putting a controversial idea out there, take a look at some of the comments on this post by Don Miller.

I say good for Don and good for my friend. I admire that kind of fearless. I believe Jesus wants us to demonstrate that kind of fearless.

I’m not there yet.

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Copyright 2008-2013 by Rich Dixon, All Rights Reserved. Used by permission.Rich is an author and speaker. He is the author of: Relentless Grace: God’s Invitation To Give Hope Another Chance. Visit his web site www.relentlessgrace.com

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