Dear brother Marc,
I’m really frustrated with certain people in my church and family. They just won’t listen to any other opinion on how God may what us to think or act. And then they blame me for not agreeing with them. Man, they’re pushy. Could they be those stonewallers you’re talking about? I want to be a seeker, but these Christians have me wondering. They seem to attack when you question anything they say. What gives?
Thanks for your courage in connecting. No, brother, you’re not alone or losing your mind! As a good friend and brother describes, this phenomenon we know as stonewalling is pandemic. He goes on to say almost all Christians are on auto-pilot. I’d add that any honorable discussion is made undiscussable. And their undiscussability is also made undiscussable.
It’s their way or the highway. And…they depreciate you along the way making you feel the whole thing is your fault! . “It’s so clear,” they proclaim. Of course it is – it’s their own opinion. Who are you to say anything?
And pretty demonic.
Spiritual arrogance is pride of the worse sort. I know it firsthand. I’ve practiced it. And been delivered. But, on occasion, I or others can point out I can still fall into it.
What follows are some definitions of a seeker and stonewaller plus the key traits of the practicing stonewaller. And then I finish up with a short exhortation.
A seeker is one who:
- advocates his-her opinion rigorously and humbly while seeking honorable feedback and others opinions until stonewalled by others,
- actively seeks new information that brings clarity and truthful unity,
- lovingly admonishes-teaches others while first seeking to remove the log in his-her own eye in the area they’re speaking about, and
- knows he-she stonewalls on occasion and seek to limit it with the Spirit’s help!
A stonewaller is one who
- practices advocating his-her opinion only to get the other to agree,
- refuses new information and evidence,
- accuses other people of not listening if they don’t completely agree,
- never thinks he-she practices stonewalling, and
- attacks others who suggest he-she may indeed be doing this!
Practicing Christian stonewallers:
- have their minds made up on cherished doctrines-opinions, often hiding behind “the Bible is clear,” and only seek to verify their opinions, while astonished they might be a stonewaller.
- when presented with a Biblical communication model around Acts 15, they often refuse to apply it to their own method when they teach or admonish you.
- consistently ignore or refuse to listen carefully and thoroughly to your opinion of doctrine and/or admonishment about them, while advocating-pushing their opinions only, coming back at you with things they dislike, while rolling over you in a dishonorable way.
- claim you’re “not listening” or you’re a “stonewaller,” (if you introduced them to that term) when you don’t-can’t agree with their opinion-accusation.
- proclaim “the Bible is clear” regarding their opinion-accusation, while often demeaning any Hebrew-Greek word meanings and commentaries that would help, plus refusing to search together over time for the Lord’s mind using the Bible and other sources.
- accuse you of hypocrisy (saying one thing and doing the opposite) while themselves often practice the same by refusing to consider even a speck in their own eye.
- eventually make your concerns against them undiscussable when you try to bring them back to your initial point, and they see you’re not fully agreeing at this time.
- make their undiscussability undiscussable when you point out they’re stonewalling tactics as they often redouble their attack on you, even as you have lovingly, rigorously, and effectively point these things out to them.
- eventually, a) avoid the issue but continue to snipe at you, or b) refuse to gather with you, or c) put you out, further splitting the church and often continuing with their group built around a main doctrine (or 2 or 10) and/or personality that practices at least several of the 7 characteristics of a cult.
You’re a valuable member of the body of Christ, dear brother. You have the complete 100% Holy Spirit. You deserve to be heard. Don’t give up your opinion if you’re not persuaded by other honorable Christians, and the Spirit. Don’t let anyone steal that – Satan’s job description is destruction. God gives hope. You will be delivered.
But don’t fall into the trap of practicing stonewalling in your supreme frustration. Forgive their stuff, and move on to other fruit God will provide. Even in your own family. Let them be.
Life is all about suffering. Leap for joy in your sadness and loneliness. Pray for relief, and that God will bring those brethren who have been through the fire of stonewalling relationships.
We’re so sorry you’re going through this. Jesus weeps with you, dear one. He knows. The Bible, as well as modern life, is full of stonewallers. May it not be so with us.
There comes a time, maybe near the beginning, to refrain…and not cast your pearls before pigs. And give what is holy to the dogs. Terrible words aimed at sinning believers or self-professing Christians.
Here’s a piece we did on casting your pearls:
Please comment on this post right below. Feel free to write and proclaim your leadings in the Spirit in an honorable fashion.
Your friend and brother in fighting the good fight,
Saints, we’re one day closer to Home, and Him! Love Him wholeheartedly!
You may view our Archives here: DEAR BRETHREN – ARCHIVES; Complete Archives; feel free to write and proclaim your leadings in the Spirit in an honorable fashion. May our Father richly bless you with His grace, through Jesus Christ our Lord, in order to walk worthy of His name.