Care-fronting: What and How, Not Why
"Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take." - (Proverbs 3:5-6 NLT)
Thoughts for Today
"Why did you do that?"
Ever cringe when someone has asked you that question? Did it make you feel defensive? Angry?
When you are care-fronting someone struggling with a life-controlling problem, they are likely to respond to why questions the same way.
Why may create instant barriers to communication. You are questioning their motives—and that can make defenses spring to life.
Instead of "Why did you . . ." or "Why didn't you . . .," talk about observable behaviors. What . . . how . . . when . . . where.
Your loved one's motives for their behavior may be wrong, but calling those motives into question doesn't help anyone. You can best penetrate their delusions by presenting facts in a nonthreatening way.
Consider this …
This week we've addressed several ways to care-front someone with a life-controlling problem. A balance between truth and love is vital. Make a commitment to speak the truth no matter how painful it may be to bring the facts out into the open. Always speak respectfully and lovingly. Avoid opinions or judgments. Stick to the facts.
Here is the most important thing to remember: don't depend on your own wisdom, your timing, your way. Always depend on the Holy Spirit's guidance. Seek God's will in all you do.
Father, I need your help. I cannot do this on my own. Help me speak the truth no matter how painful it may be. And help me always speak in love. In Jesus' name . . .
These thoughts were drawn from …
Concerned Persons: Because We Need Each Other by Jimmy Ray Lee, D.Min. This group is designed for the many people who have a current or past relationship with a person who has a life-controlling problem.
- It emphasizes the need we all have for each other.
- It helps people focus on Christ rather than on the problem.
- It serves as a powerful evangelistic tool by providing a way to minister to people's felt needs and then pointing them to Christ.
Note: This curriculum was written especially for small groups, and we encourage people to use it that way. However, it can also be used effectively as a study for individuals or couples.
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