How To Graciously Rebuke

Glennon Doyle Melton Announces Engagement To A Woman

A little while ago, I wrote a blog called Love? Some Thoughts on Glennon Doyle Melton’s Message. If you do not know who Glennon is, she is the author of the #1 New York Times best selling memoir, Love Warrior and Carry On, Warrier, blogger of Momastery and public speaker. She is also claims to be a christian.

Many people have warmed to her honest and transparent way of sharing and encouraging unity.  The Lord knows the world could do with more of those things, right?

Late last year, Glennon announced her divorce from her husband and the father of her three children.  Not long after that announcement, came another one about her dating again.  She had started dating a woman. Then earlier this week came a third announcement; her and her girlfriend, Abby are engaged.

She posted a photo of their hands entwined with a gorgeous diamond engagement set. The caption read:

“Abby and I have decided to hold hands forever. Love wins.”

Glennon’s facebook page started flooding with over 1200 messages of love and congratulations from many of her followers and over 28000 likes or reactions to the post.

Every now and then though, throughout the comment sections someone would voice their disgust at this decision, loudly object (in capital letters just in case us readers were not sure) and mention quite strongly that this is an abomination.  Perhaps they are right.  I am pretty sure Glennon is about to rethink her decision now that someone has berated her on a public platform online.  It only seems logical that the penny might drop and she have an “a-ha” moment because the CAPITAL LETTERS won her over. Sheesh!  Why didn’t anyone try this earlier? I hear calling people an abomination often draws people back to Jesus…(I’m being sarcastic)

Of course, this kind or comment sparked a flurry of reactions and comments as people took to their keyboards to defend Glennon and Abby from the judgmental Christians.

Some of the defense was provided by other Christians.  They kindly pointed out to their fellow followers of Christ that they are not the Holy Spirit.  Therefore, they should not be judging Glennon and Abby as this is the Holy Spirit’s job. Our job is to love God and love others.  It sounds almost legit.  That is because some of it is.

We are called to love God and love others. Tick.

We are reminded in the bible a number of times not to judge people.  Tick.

I fear both of these responses from Christians see people drifting further and further away from God and His truths.

I know why both people wish to comment.  I think the main reason some Christians on the post voiced their concern for Glennon and Abby is because Glennon DOES profess to being a Christian.  As lovey as it sounds and as much as it sounds great to think love is love is love, it needs to be backed up with what Scripture teaches.

My hope would be that Christians commenting on Glennon and Abby’s post are doing so because they sincerely care for her and Abby. They would also are aware of her far and wide reaching influence.  I personally love her passion and desire to see love win and communities connected BUT I tend to read more of a self fulfilling love that comes from ‘me’ or ‘us’.

At the end of the day this will crumble because it is not deeply and firmly established in Jesus and HIS love.

In the Bible it tells us to discern by their fruits – by what they produce.  Unfortunately, the visible fruit that we can ‘see’ from just this online presence is not one that points to Jesus and the gospel.  It points to ‘love’, ‘what feels good’ and finding your own ‘truth’.

It sounds pretty, but it isn’t.

There is only ONE truth, and that is Jesus.  There is no individual truth for each of us to find.

So, as Christians, how DO we respond to this?  We don’t want to push people further away from Christ by screaming judgments but we don’t want to gloss over the sin that will separate people from God either by cheering them on and ‘loving’ them with a love that is not biblical.

God clearly tells us in the Bible that we are to use the scriptures to instruct, rebuke and correct our fellow believers in the hope that they would repent. (James 5:20, 2 Timothy 4:2 and 1 Timothy 5:20 are just some examples.)

If you can respond in grace and Godly love for the sole purpose of hoping someone would return to Jesus and the truth of His scripture, then you are not judging.  You are instructing, rebuking and correcting.  I pray that THIS would be a skill more Christians would seek to foster and grow.

I hope nothing but the best for Glennon and Abby and my deepest prayer is for them to fall in love with Jesus, their FIRST love again, and cling tightly only to Him.

As always – I’m eager to read your thoughts and to discuss!  Remember to be gracious.

 

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About Megan

Megan, is a wife and mum living in Western Australia. She holds a Bachelor of Education in Primary teaching and teaches as a music specialist. Her passion is Jesus and her love for writing about Him and for Him took her by surprise. She is author of My Faith Tree where she shares her faith and encourages readers to live faithfully following Jesus and seek to leave a legacy of faith for generations to come. You can follow her on the social media platforms listed below.

6 Comments

  • The D1va February 24, 2017 at 12:17 am

    “God clearly tells us in the Bible that we are to use the scriptures to instruct, rebuke and correct our fellow believers in the hope that they would repent. (James 5:20, 2 Timothy 4:2 and 1 Timothy 5:20 are just some examples.)”

    Thank you for this. I get so frustrated with everyone saying “don’t judge me” or “only God can judge” when the Bible tells us that we are to instruct, rebuke and correct (i.e. judge) our fellow believers.

    Reply
    • Megan February 24, 2017 at 5:17 pm

      Hi The D1VA!

      Me tooooo!!! I have struggled for a long time beating myself up for having judgmental thoughts. (I am not with out them! Ha!) However, God has been showing me the differences between discerning, correcting, teaching, rebuking compared to judging and HIS judgment. It was rather freeing. I wonder if there are a lot of Christians out there too afraid to offer anything to the conversations because they have been made to believe they are judging?

      Reply
  • Gena February 24, 2017 at 4:50 am

    When it comes to speaking truth in love, I think about something a pastor said…

    “Do you have permission to speak this truth to this person?”

    A person is not going to receive a rebuke, correction, or guidance from a complete stanger. We can throw all caps, italics, bold, and quotes all we want, but they are not going to listen to someone who has no credibility or that they don’t respect.

    She needs people whom she loves, trusts, and has relationships with to be the ones speaking truth to her. They will be able to get past walls of defensivness, her heart will be softened to their words because she knows they love her.

    Reply
    • Megan February 24, 2017 at 5:12 pm

      Hi Gena, those are wise words from the pastor! I also know how important it is to walk in a relationship with Jesus. To learn to know his voice. Then we will be in tune as to whether it is our job to speak and what to speak and when not to speak. Rather than spurt out bible verses for the sake of it or to try and win the battle of words. I want to be a part of winning the battle for people’s hearts rather than words 😀

      Reply
  • Yvette February 26, 2017 at 10:03 pm

    Thanks for writing this, Megan. I think I’ve been living under a rock or something because I only recently realised that there are Gay Christians out there. I guess I thought the term gay christian was an oxymoron! I’ve been thinking about Glennon all weekend since I saw the announcement on instagram. I’m only new to blogging really, so I had not previously noticed how many Christian bloggers are very supportive of LGBT rights, but now I see it everywhere and I realise I need to become more informed. On Saturday I posted in my bible college’s student FB page asking people to point me toward some resources. I’d love to talk with you more.

    Reply
    • Megan February 27, 2017 at 2:57 pm

      Hi Yvette (again), Thanks for commenting. It does sound like it should be an oxymoron, doesn’t it? There are more and more gay christians and many christians who are re-thinking their views towards it. I would love to see more Christians demonstrate Christ-like love towards the LGBT community but I don’t think that needs to be by agreeing with their beliefs. I also want it to be easier to have open dialogue about these issues. I am definitely not an expert on these matters but I am a woman who desperately wants to stand on God’s word. I welcome any conversation.

      Reply

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