But those who wait on the LORD Shall renew their strength; They shall mount up with
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(Isaiah 40:31 NKJ)
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Confronting an offense
--When, If and How.
“It takes two to tango,” as the saying goes, but if you feel that another was just plain abusive and you said not a word, deserving nothing, then I would pray for their hearts and for a full conviction of the Lord to work in their heart, revealing His truth to what lies are there. Trust that God DOES have a plan for both of you and that you are not alone. Talk to your pastor or a counselor especially if you are in danger. It’s true that these steps may fuel a raging abusive person even further and no one should be a victim of abuse, physically OR emotionally. The enemy that is behind abuse is strong but strong but greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world (1 John 4:4), so be encouraged and get help in your battle.
you feel a certain way, they just step on the pain of the past or current offenses that haven’t been healed at the throne. That’s why you need to go to the Lord FIRST for the healing you need to be able to approach another with love and with God’s heart for them. This allows them to care for your pain and not put up such a defense to hearing your heart. When you rebuke another, speak with love to the sin, meaning to not speak out of bitterness or anger, indignation or condemnation, but speak with love for this person so that they may be restored to the Lord. First - CHECK your MOTIVES Is your motive to talk to this person because;
A) you love them as a brother/sister in Christ and you feel such deep compassion for them through Christ as to restore them onto the Lord?
Brothers, even if a man is caught in some fault, you who are spiritual must restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness; looking to yourself so that you also aren't tempted. --Galatians 6:1
B) you love this person and long for a deeper relationship with them or restoration from a fallout between you and that person?
In love of the brothers be tenderly affectionate one to another; in honor preferring one another;--Romans 12:10
C) is there a secret ache down inside to show the other person their sin because you know you’re in the right, that you struggle with the same sin, or you think that if they stop this action, you will feel better around them?
Don't seek revenge yourselves, beloved, but give place to God's wrath. For it is written, "Vengeance belongs to me; I will repay, says the Lord." –Romans 12:19
Second - Go to “Daddy” In checking your motive and lining it up with God’s word, you know have an idea where to start in prayer with the Lord, to seek out what HIS heart is for any direction in restoration. If you have anger or pain towards another who sinned against you, one of the FIRST things you need to do is ask the Lord and forgive that person in your heart. Then you need to ask His Forgiveness for taking offense in the first place, for that is pride and we sin against God only (Psalm 51:4)
You hypocrite! First remove the beam out of your own eye, and then you can see clearly to remove the speck out of your brother's eye.--Matthew 7:5
You may find comfort and healing at this stage by going through the Pain Words (the steps at bottom of that page) and then the 2 Minute Quick Cleanse until your heart is for of compassion, humility and the focus is not on yourself.
Take heed to yourselves: If thy brother trespass against thee, rebuke him; and if he repent, forgive him. --Luke 17:3
We are STILL CALLED TO FORGIVE even if they do not ask for forgiveness or repent. The above verse just means that you cannot hold onto unforgiveness if they do not repent.
And when ye stand praying, forgive, if ye have ought against any: that your Father also which is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses.--Mark 11:25
At this stage you may not even feel a need to confront the offender, you may wait for the Lord’s voice before you take any action.
Forgive us our sins, for we ourselves also forgive everyone who is indebted to us. Bring us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.' --Luke 11:4
The Lord may already be working on that one issue in the other and you may not know it. The Lord may say, “wait,” “endure,” or “pray.”
The Lord is a stronghold for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble. (Psalm 9:9) Have noticed that the more you try to defend yourself in any argument, the more heated things get? The enemy loves a good fight and once someone is upset to the point of defending their anger, your defense will fuel the fire so remember that JESUS IS YOUR DEFENDER. My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin. But if anyone does sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous. (1 John 2:1) In restoration, don’t make excuses for your behavior but seek the Lord’s heart for the other in humility, take responsibility for your actions that were not in line with God’s word but be silent if someone is “on a roll” in their anger. “DUCK” and be silent as Jesus was before His accusers. Let their words accuse themselves.
Ok, let me just start out by saying that as Christians(those who have fully surrendered their life to Christ, recognizing a need for a savior and repented of all sin, receive salvation through way of the cross and died to all that they are and have become a new creation, with evidence of a true conversion by changes in their character and behavior), we are to be unoffendable, totally secure in the Lord and knowing that that those who sin, sin against God and only Him (Psalm 54:1).
And I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you. And I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh.--Ezekiel 36:26
An offended heart is in danger of becoming a “heart of stone”. There is no perfect man on earth and scripture says that we ALL will offend others, and that it’s near impossible to get around.
For in many things we offend all. If any man offend not in word, the same is a perfect man, and able also to bridle the whole body.--James 3:2
There are many different kinds of offense and there are different ways of handling them. You may see a sin or offense in someone that is NOT AGAINST YOU and that is handled differently than if a brother sins against you. God’s word has much to say about seeing another sin but we are only talking about an OFFENSE AGAINST YOU, whether it causes heartache and pain, or not. God’s Heart is towards Restoration.
If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault, between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have gained your brother. --Matthew 18:15
Whether we do so intentionally or inadvertently, it’s never our true heart to hurt anyone, especially those whose relationship we treasure. Sometimes, the sins of others may hurt us and so we might speak out of our own frustration and pain, not meaning to hurt or slight them Whatever the reason for the pain, but our heart needs to ALWAYS be lined up with what God wants to do in our lives. God’s heart is ALWAYS towards restoration; us onto Him, and us onto each other.
If it is possible, as much as it is up to you, be at peace with all men.--Romans 12:18
NEVER speak out of anger!
Be angry, and do not sin; ponder in your own hearts on your beds, and be silent. Selah --Psalm 4:4
Too many people get so wrapped up in their pain that they lash out in anger when hurt. We start to get into the enemy’s territory of confusion when we try to make heads or tails of a situation where someone’s feelings are hurt. Sometimes we get wrapped up in defending ourselves or trying to figure out what we could say to elicit a response from the other person that would make ourselves feel better. If we try to defend, correct, rebuke or speak to the offender while in pain, or even out of turn with the Lord’s timing and will (and with our own agenda), then it’s “open season” for an argument.
God is not a God of confusion, but of peace. As in all the assemblies of the saints,--1 Corinthians 14:33
When HUMILITY comes hard.
This is a tough one because it’s hard to be humble when you are hurting too, that’s why I love that fact that the LORD HIMSELF will give us humility. If you seek Him in prayer and go through a lot of the cleansing steps listed in this article, just ASK FOR HUMILITY and the Lord will give you grace where you do not have it for another. You will be amazed at the power that flows to you when you start to have compassion for someone who has wronged you and when the Lord takes your pain and replaces it with HIS heart for another who is most likely; equally hurting. By humility and the fear of the LORD are riches, and honour, and life. (Proverbs 22:4) We just have to HUMBLE ourselves to the Lord and He will give us strength to humble ourselves to each other.
If you speak out of pain and anger, we won’t be received. Instead, we’ll most likely shut down the other person’s heart from hearing us because most people feel the need to defend themselves when they feel threatened or attacked and anger does such a thing.
bearing with one another, and forgiving each other, if any man has a complaint against any; even as Christ forgave you, so you also do.--Colossians 3:13
Anger builds walls, not bridges.
Surely the churning of milk bringeth forth butter, and the wringing of the nose bringeth forth blood: so the forcing of wrath bringeth forth strife. --Proverbs 30:33
Displaying anger at another person is NEVER justified. “But HE MAKES ME ANGRY”, you might say, but in truth, nobody “MAKES”
Even though Luke 17:3 says: “Pay attention to yourselves! If your brother sins, rebuke him, and if he repents, forgive him,” Some versions say “if your brother sins AGAINST YOU…” and so we don’t want to rush in quick to point out another’s sin, for that is not love. The goal STILL has to be restoration I have been in many situations where I have prayed for the other person’s heart, as I did my own work before the throne, and in some instances, the other person came and apologized, and in other instances, it was shared me me much later what the Lord was doing in their life. God doesn’t NEED US to point something out to another, but His word does say much about rebuking sin, you still have to do all things in Love and with the Lord’s timing. The Lord may surprise you on HOW to approach the other, for He sees way more than you do, for if you have HIS heart, He may show you a whole different direction. Sometimes the cause of the offense may be issues of rejection, control or abandonment in YOU, and the the other person really did nothing wrong or didn’t mean to hurt you. Sometimes the other person may may be the one feeling disrespected or rejected, and the Lord may give you encouragement and a kind word for them, which could open the door to restoration. Things are not always what they seem so WE NEED HIS GUIDANCE in trying to figure it all out.
Moreover if thy brother shall trespass against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone: if he shall hear thee, thou hast gained thy brother. --Matthew 18:15
On the other hand, if this is a regular occurrence between you and a loved one and you feel the Lord is saying it’s time to share your heart, then look at the aids on A Restoring Conversation Builder for phrases that you may bring to the Lord in prayer for a course of action with the Lords’ grace, timing and power involved.
Be angry and do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger, (Ephesians 4:26)
Don’t let ONE NIGHT pass before resolving any anger at the feet of the Lord. Bitterness will start to set in otherwise and it leads to even more heartache and pain. Resolve your pain before the Lord with the steps listed above before you go to your brother / sister in love, bringing the Lord with you (in constant prayer); waiting for His timing and direction. asking for His revelation, His peace, His joy and His manifest presence upon the other person as well. Addressing Sin vs. Your Feelings The discussion can get muddy with what the REAL ISSUE IS, which is restoring a relationship. We mentioned that when trying to make sense of the situation from a human perspective, without the Lord’s guidance, we work with human
interpretation to what really happened,and that’s where we enter the devils playground.
For where jealousy and selfish ambition are, there is confusion and every evil deed. --James 3:16
Once this happens, people get defensive because they feel attacked and then old hurts in the areas of abandonment and rejection may cause their “hidden pride” (focusing on ourselves and the “wrongs done us”) to defend themselves no matter what the topic is. (See “I have a RIGHT to be ANGRY!”), Basically, in ANY argument (it takes two to tango), you have two hurt people getting caught in a whirlwind of accusations, defenses or attacks, not listening to the other and certainly not able to care for anyone’s heart but their own.
By the fruit of his lips, a man enjoys good things; but the unfaithful crave violence.--Proverbs 13:2
Division and walls start to build,trust is lost, and we can only imagine what happens next when anger and violence is left to continue.
Every Scripture is God-breathed and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for instruction in righteousness, --2 Timothy 3:16
. You Cannot Argue with Sin
Do not reprove a scoffer, or he will hate you; reprove a wise man, and he will love you. --Proverbs 9:8
Something said in an unloving way either WAS said in an unloving way, or or wasn’t. A comment was either unkind or it wasn’t.
with all lowliness and humility, with patience, bearing with one another in love; --Ephesians 4:2
Addressing sin allows you to open the door for the Lord to speak to BOTH of you. A person may not have MEANT for his or her words to be unkind or unloving, but addressing things from GOD’S perspective keeps things simple and is hard to argue with, leaving room for restoration.
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faith, gentleness, and self-control. Against such things there is no law. If we live by the Spirit, let's also walk by the Spirit. Let's not become conceited, provoking one another, and envying one another. --Galatians 5:22-23 &25-26
His word is truth, and is His light…and there is no darkness in the light. If done in love, God’s word has power to convict and teach and cut to the hard of those who are surrendered to Him.
Stay on topic A good thing to do would be to state clearly your heart for restoration, and how it’s not your heart to argue (See Restoring Conversation Builder). If Sin was involved, verses just a misunderstanding, state what the actual sin was IN RELATION to how it made you feel. An example would be, “I felt your words were unkind and I was deeply hurt by them”, instead of, “you said that I’m a ‘lousy good wife’ just because the dinner wasn’t on the table on time,and I’ve been working day and night to keep things running”(See brown box above on not defending yourself verbally). Defending yourself only gives fodder for the other person to disagree with you, and they may not back down, or admit that they were doing anything other than stating a truth. It’s really hard to argue with a person who shares their hurt feelings over your unkind words. They cannot argue over your feelings and say something like “NO you DON’T feel hurt!” How silly. You may also find that in the MIDST of a situation, that stating a sin from a meek & humble perspective may help to defuse the situation and give pause for the Lord to work; “that was a very unkind statement,”, instead defending your action or lack of it, for instance. If SIN is involved, then addressing the sin in love or with humility leaves room for the Lord to convict the other, because it brings the situation to God’s playing field.
Be careful. If your brother sins against you, rebuke him. If he repents, forgive him. --Luke 17:3
Your Heavenly Father still calls to forgive someone in our heart. If sin is involved, the offender actually sinned against God (Psalm 51:4), so our heart and motive should be with love for them, along with a desire to see their heart restored onto Christ, and not for our own selfish gain. DUCK - and Let God take over. The other person may not humble themselves in the case of sin, may not receive you in your desire for restoration, or they may try to argue that their comment was NOT unloving to you. If this should happen, you need to back out, DUCK, and let the Lord deal with them.
Pride only breeds quarrels, but with ones who take advice is wisdom. –Proverbs
13:10 When pride comes, then comes shame, but with humility comes wisdom. –Proverbs 11:2
A man's pride brings him low, but one of lowly spirit gains honor. –Proverbs 29:23
It’s up to the Lord to convict them and if you stay on task with addressing that which HE has spoke about, then you are taken out of the equation and God can convict and start to work on their hearts, bringing conviction and whatever HE deems necessary for their life in restoration to Him. DUCK, and know that the Lord will do what is necessary in the situation and in their heart, praying for grace and mercy for that person.We are to exercise grace and humility, knowing that we ourselves are far from perfection, loving even if we are not loved back, for this is what we are called to do.
For you, brothers, were called for freedom. Only don't use your freedom for gain to the flesh, but through love be servants to one another. –Galatians 5:13
Love others enough to always have a heart for restoration, wait on the Lord’s timing and pray without ceasing for yourself and for your neighbor. The God of all Glory, Honor and worthy of all Praise will bless you.
I therefore, the prisoner in the Lord, beg you to walk worthily of the calling with which you were called, with all lowliness and humility, with patience, bearing with one another in love; –Ephesians 4:1-2
Take a look at some of the phrases on A Restoring Conversation Builder before you take any action. Spend time in the Lord’s word and repent for any hidden pride (or self focus- See 2 Minute Quick Cleanse & Pain words, following the steps on the bottom of those pages), and receive your own healing from His Holy throne and wait upon Him. The Lord’s heart is always for you and He knows all you go through, knows your desires and knows your hurts, knows just where to touch, and where to cut, where to convict, where to move and where healing needs to come. We just have to be willing to give up our pain and allow Him to keep renewing our heart, bring healing and restoration back onto Him. Just as Jesus did only what he heard the Father do (john 5:19) and so should we!