A classic pastoral scenario:

Someone (let’s call him Q) is desperate for love, for relationship. Normal enough need. There’s a difficulty, though: Q insists that relationship be on his terms (most often his relational “agenda” is derived, however distantly, from biblical principles). When relationship doesn’t happen on those terms, Q starts behaving in ways that drive people away (aggressively or passively). If confronted about this, the situation is always the fault of others: after all (here the biblical thing enters again), God commands love and relationship, so why aren’t the others getting with the program? There’s no persuading Q that he’s either (a) demanding things God doesn’t explicitly command, or (b) demanding responses God does command, but which must be won and wooed from others rather than demanded. So he sits and stews, and feels more and more righteous in his woundedness.

If I had a nickel for every time I’ve worked with this scenario. . . . And, let it be said, I myself have very often been Q.

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