"We need to talk."
Usually these words preceed a conversation neither party is looking forward to having.According to my husband, it usally means that the bed of roses we were walking on is about to turn to a crown of thorns.
I recently came across a scripture in the bible that had a providencial "We need to talk" stamped all over it. I found it a couple of weeks ago and tried to forget it ever since. But it wouldn't be ignored. So what's the scripture that had me running like Jonah to Ninevah?
1 Corinthians 6:7. The context for chapter 6 verses 1-8 is Paul is writing to the church in Corinth. They have been having a hard time settling disputes amongst themselves. So they started taking each other to court.
Vs. 1 When one of you has a dispute with another believer, how dare you file a lawsuit and ask a secular court to decide the matter instead of taking it to other believers. (NLT)
Paul's reasoning for why this is a bad idea is found in verse 4.
Vs. 4 If you have legal disputes about such matters, why go to outside judges who are not respected by the church?
He is saying that the church of believers, which wasn't recognized or respected by the governing authorities at the time, should not go to those who don't share their beliefs to settle matters. Instead, he urged the believers to take their matters before wise men of the church to settle a dispute.
Here is the verse that I have been struggling with:
vs. 7 Even to have such law suits with one another is a defeat for you. Why not just accept the injustice and leave it at that? Why not let yourselves be cheated? (NLT)
Ummmm excuse me?!
Why not just accept the injustice and let myself be cheated?!??!?!?!
Well Paul, author of 13 of the 27 books in the new testatment, here is my answer....
"Because it is not FAIR!" If we are all believers, then someone else should show a little wisdom or humility and not cheat me or do injustice against me in the first place, right?
If it isn't apparent, the reason I ran away from this scripture was because it touched a sore spot in my heart. It reminded me of the hurts that my fellow Christians bestowed on me. I remember thinking, "if they loved God so much, they should see why they are wrong and I am right."
Like Jonah, I ran away from this scripture because I heard God saying "We need to talk" but I, dreading what that conversation would entail, decided it would be safer to run away for a while instead of listening.
And just like with Jonah, God has a way of getting your attention. So was I swallowed by a ginormous fish?
No! I heard a sermon by Karen Vaughn. I had never heard of Karen and Linus Vaughn before, but I went to a church this past weekend to support a friend, God showed up again saying "we need to talk".
The reason I didn't want to have "a little talk with Jesus" about this verse was I didn't want to be told my hurt was not valid or that it was immature.
We fear the "we need to talk" conversations because we assume the ending from the beginning. But we forget that at the end of the "we need to talk" conversations comes restoration and deeper connection.