TO VENT OR NOT TO VENT? That is the question. Sometimes you just need a safe place to vent your frustrations. But be very careful that you do not choose the wrong person. Years ago, I thought I had a trusted friend to vent to, but it ended up not being so. I learned my lesson very quickly. They went and aired my frustrations with someone else. Have you ever heard the expression, “Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.”? I learned my lesson. My daughter had the same issue in junior high, and it was the perfect time to share with her a few lessons I’ve learned.
“One who is righteous is a guide to his neighbor, but the way of the wicked leads them astray.” Proverbs 12:26
“Venting” is about airing your frustrations, but as a Christian always with the mindset of wise direction. It’s not about complaining to complain or a safe place to gossip. Slander and gossip have no place in the Christian. Venting should have a purpose to seek reconciliation and forgiveness when it’s demanded. It’s about getting things out that have been stirring inside you, but in a safe environment and to a safe ear. Sometimes you just need to talk to someone to help you see clearly what’s going on. Some people have to talk things through in order to process the situation.
Venting should never be on a public platform. This is not only foolishness, but can cause division, bitterness, and strife in others. Then you are in a worse place with the Creator. If you destroy the unity of the Body of Christ by sowing division, you will answer to God. This scripture relates to the local church as the temple of God, being made up of many living stones (individuals filled with the Spirit). God cares about how you treat the church body.
“Do you not know that you are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you? If anyone defiles the temple of God, God will destroy him. For the temple of God is holy, which temple you are.” I Corinthians 3:16-17
Most of us need to vent our frustrations. Here’s what I have learned: take it or the Lord first. He can handle all your anger, pain and frustrations with others and/or circumstances. He is big enough to hear you. He knows and He cares. He can handle your anger, even if it’s with Him. Just be careful not to accuse Him falsely. Then sit and listen and receive His instruction and rebuke. Really listen.
Most of the time, the problem is with you. Be prepared to repent and get your heart right. Your heart will always tell on you. For some of us, this is enough. But God gives us friendship and fellowship to sharpen us and bear our burdens with us. We need others. Secondly, find a trusted friend who will not tell you what you want to hear, but will tell you what you need to hear. Find a truth teller who’s not afraid to hurt your feelings and be careful of the flatterer. Do not vent to another complainer, they will only make matters worse. And for goodness sake, do not keep going around telling everyone until you get the answer you want to hear!
Before going to a person to vent, ask yourself some hard questions. What are my motives? To seek guidance and prayer? To seek the truth? Or am I trying to slander this person? Do I have an offense? Am I operating in bitterness and resentment? Do I only want to complain or do I truly want wisdom and guidance? Am I seeking for an answer or to prove myself right? Am I willing to be corrected?
“He who walks with wise men will be wise, But the companion of fools will be destroyed.”
A wise person will look at a situation from 360 degrees and guide you to seek a peaceful outcome, reconciliation or forgiveness.
To Learn More About Pastor Crystal please visit the Leadership Page