Are You a Christian Bully? Do You Know One?

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Everyone knows one - a Christian bully. It should be an oxymoron, but unfortunately it's not. But it's not too late to change.

Everyone knows one – a Christian bully. It should be an oxymoron, but unfortunately it’s not. But it’s not too late to change.

Christian Bullies.

Shouldn’t that be an oxymoron?

Sadly, it’s not.

You may not call it bullying. You may call it just voicing your beliefs and opinions, but if you’re mean and belittling—based on the definition above . . . you are bullying.

I’m not saying you and I have to agree with everything we read. I’m not a member of the political correctness police. I simply believe it’s possible to disagree without being ugly. I also believe we hurt the name of Christ when we call ourselves Christian and we’re mean.

I felt the need to talk about this after reading through a Facebook conversation that bothered me. A frustrated mom asked for help, and although she received some ideas and things to try, others were well . . . much less than kind.

Everyone knows one - a Christian bully. It should be an oxymoron, but unfortunately it's not. But it's not too late to change.

Questions to Ask Yourself Before You Post a Comment

The next time you get ready to click the enter button to leave a comment on a blog post, in a chat room, or a Facebook group please ask yourself the following questions:

  1. How would I feel if someone said this to me? To my child?
  2. Would I say this if I found myself face to face with this person?
  3. Would I say this to a friend? To someone I wanted to be my friend?
  4. Could this be misunderstood or interpreted as being uncaring or unkind?
  5. Is this good? Is it helpful? Really?
  6. What is my intention?
  7. What do I want this comment to accomplish? Is that likely?
  8. Does this comment glorify God?

Remember . . . your words have the ability to would more than you think.

I love this verse from Colossians:

Since God chose you to be the holy people He loves, you must clothe yourselves with tenderhearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. Colossians 3:12

Everyone

I promised to share inspiring stories of faith, hope, and love with you this year, and I want to live up to that promise. So I looked for a positive story that referenced bullying, and found…

“It’s Not Too Late to Change”

This is the story of Cameron Thompson, a seven-year-old second grader who is working hard to make amends after teasing another boy in his class for bringing a Barbie doll to school for show and tell.

[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nod06e3GwNc#t=186]

When Cameron launched the group this spring with the help of the boy he teased, 76 kids showed up on the first day, blowing past the school’s expectations.

The principal says bullying is down in the school district thanks to what she calls positive peer pressure.

And Cameron now says:

“If somebody was bullying another person or teasing, I would say stop and that’s not funny and you should accept a person for who they are.” he said. “It’s not too late to change.”

 

Friends, it’s not too late to change. 

Maybe it’s time for us to start a group. Women who are willing to stand up for each other publicly, privately, and online. Women willing to say “stop” and “that’s not funny.” Women willing to encourage each other and stop competing.

Why do we try to build ourselves up by tearing each other down?

I believe that like me . . . you are trying hard and doing your best. You love the Lord and want to love and trust Him more. You love your family. You put your all into raising your children. You pray for them and want them to mature into faith-filled happy successful adults.

You work away from home, at home or both. Your children go to public school, private school, or are homeschooled. You’re conservative, liberal, or somewhere between. You are tall, short, thin, thick, with a skin tone that is yours alone.

You are beautiful and you’re doing your best.

So is your sister, friend, coworker, and neighbor. Love her. Help her. Encourage her. Like Cameron, you and I can change. We can make things better. We can refuse to take part in bullying. We can refuse to stand by quietly when someone else is bullying.

It’s not too late to change. We can reject our inner Christian bully and love better.

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About Deb

Thank you so much for visiting CMB. I'm glad you're here. Please visit About Blessing Counting and Deb at the top of the page, and don't forget to leave a comment and subscribe before you go. God bless you!

36 thoughts on “Are You a Christian Bully? Do You Know One?

  1. I agree. I have had many encounters with those who think they are helping but really are mean and acting like a bully. Thanks for writing this and reminding people that we need to speak the truth in love not by being mean or belittling others.

    1. Thanks for visiting Dianna and for your encouragement. I’m trying to remember to be more understanding and patient. I’m definitely still a work in progress, but pray each day to do better than the day before. Blessings!

  2. Well said, Deb. Unfortunately, my monitor at work does not give me sound, so I’ll have to wait until I get home to view the video. BUT, without seeing it, I’m amazed that a second grader would launch a program. My goodness, when I was in second grade, that kind of thing would never have crossed my mind. Then again, when I was in second grade, bullying was ignored…and I was only thinking of myself…not that I was a bully!

    1. I hope you enjoy the video when you get a moment Mary. Cameron learned a great lesson and is working hard to share what he learned with others. I think most second graders and beyond are self-focused. Cameron’s message is good for everyone.

  3. I, too, have often seen the bullying of others going down on Facebook. It always breaks my heart. I love your tips here, Deb, and the remarkable story of Cameron.
    We do need to be aware of what we say and how we say it to others who are reaching out for help and understanding. Thanks for the inspiration today!
    Blessings!

  4. Thank you Deb! What a beautiful message of Love and change.
    This is very timely for me, not that I am bullying, but I feel the judgment rising up in me when I see other women faces tough situations that I “perceive” to be from bad choices. I just prayed before reading this and asked God to help me not judge other women, who have taken different roads in life, because I have not walked in their shoes and I really don’t know their hearts.
    Feeling a righteous justification to judge or bully someone else is a reflection of our own inability to accept God’s gift of grace and His righteousness.
    That you for the post and the inspiring video. Blessings Susan <3

    1. I think women have a tendency to be hard on each other. I’m guilty too. My goal is to remind myself to be more patient with others as God has been so very patient with me. I love your last point. “Feeling a righteous justification to judge or bully someone else is a reflection of our own inability to accept God’s gift of grace and His righteousness.” So true!

  5. Such important truths here, Deb. Thank you for speaking up for hurting souls who take a risk to ask for encouragement but are bullied instead. Cameron’s story is inspiring and such a beautiful example for all of us. Visiting you from Kelly’s.

    1. Thank you Trudy. I felt so bad when I say this mom asking for help say she’d go elsewhere for help in the future. We can’t mentor once the opportunity is lost. We can accomplish so much more with love and encouragement. Thanks for jumping in on the conversation. Blessings!

  6. Bullying is a problem. It is more than a homo/heterosexual issue. Sadly, the one group people should get their support from are often the meanest. We the only army which shoots its own wounded. Good word Deb.

    1. You’re right Bill. That tends to be the subject we love to go after. The discussion I was referencing was moms judging each other’s parenting. Then there’s the appearance attacks and oh, I could go on and on.

      I love your army comment. I’m going to remember that and use it if you don’t mind. Blessings to you!

  7. Hi Deb! I read the title of your post, and already loved it. To me, there are far too many righteous people who act un-righteously.
    Your thoughts on what to reflect on before commenting are really good. Especially how would I feel if my daughter heard those words. That really resonates with me. ‘You are doing the best you can.’ I think that works both ways. If someone is being uncharitable, I need to understand that we all don’t have good days. I’m sure I have inadvertently hurt someone, and NEVER dreamed of doing it.

    That video is powerful. I wish there was something like this for my son when he was in grade school. He had a lot of pressure from bullies. May the Lord help us to help children see how easy it can be to love each other.
    Wonderful post.
    Ceil

    1. Aw thanks Ceil! I completely agree that we have to remember the reverse is true as well. Not to take offense too quickly. If only I could faithfully remember to love first before I do anything else.

      Cameron is an inspiration isn’t he? 🙂

  8. Hi Deb,

    Thank you for your post.

    Oh yes, and how it breaks my heart…. Bullying is an issue I had to deal with while growing up, and led me to write a children’s novel to help encourage children to tell someone if they are being bullied. Of course these same issues affect adults too, and when I see it in the body of Christ, it hurts. I have experienced, and seen the damage it can do….

    Conversations online can be a very difficult setting for several reasons, one being, things can be said in the heat of the moment that many would not dream of saying face to face. Some words thoughtlessly written, can be interpreted in a number of ways, where we don’t have body language to help us gain the full meaning of the context. Words can appear cold very easily. Words have the power to hurt or heal.

    May we all shine with the love of our Saviour, considering carefully the words we share.

    May our words whether online or offline, be as sweet as honey and be used to build one another up.

    Blessings

  9. Thank you so much for this post. It really is so timely. I was able to send this along to a friend that is having some concerns. I love how God works and I commend you for writing on this topic. Praying for release over this… Cheering you on. Thanks for joining the Cheerleading LInkup!

  10. This is a great post and oh so true! I think so often people hide behind the false autonomy of the internet to say things they wouldn’t dream of saying in person. Add to that how often the typed message can come across as different than what the person was trying to say, and you’ve got a recipe for disaster. Everyone should follow the rules you posted above for all conversations. I know you have given me something to think about. Glad I found this post on the Serving Joyfully page.

    1. I agree Miranda. Somehow the keyboard and lack of proximity gives us the willingness to type whatever comes to mind. I also agree that it becomes easy to misinterpret a comment. Yes, a recipe for disaster indeed. Thanks for your kind encouragement. Blessings!

  11. I was so happy to find you at Meredith’s link up, Deb. Your words here are so wise and very necessary. We women are much too hard on each other. Instead of completing one another and being that constant source of encouragement in the sisterhood, we fight through comparison and as you say bullying. So very sad. I guess it goes back to the old adage, “If you don’t have anything nice to say…” Thanks for sharing your truth!

    1. How my mother loved Thumper’s mother’s quote. I heard it often. 🙂 And I’m always praying for a kinder community of women. Can you imagine how wonderful it would be if we absolutely refused to tear each other apart. Glory! Thanks so much for visiting and sharing your thoughts. Please come back and join the Blessing Counters Link Party.

  12. Thanks for this post! Sometimes we don’t remember that what we say on the internet might not physically involve your tongue but it surely falls under the category of controlling the tongue. Thanks for reminding us and being an example!

  13. Wow, what a great post! I have seen so many posts where the comments utterly shocked me. I don’t know what it is that we as Christians feel its ok to tear each other down. I am sharing this on my FB page today, thanks for the great reminder!

  14. Often we don’t realize when we are bullying other women, and you are exactly correct. Sometimes we believe that just because we are Christian women we can’t be bullies, we’re just “voicing our opinions.” It’s hard to come to the realization we could be hurting another person–even if only with our words.

    I wrote a post on Christian women bulling each other as well set to come out next week, only it’s addressing passive-aggressive behavior. There are so many ways we hurt each other sometimes without knowing it.

    The hardest part about a post like this is reading it intentionally and asking the Lord to reveal to me if I’m doing this to anyone right now. I’ll be searching my heart this week and seeking forgiveness and repentance if and where needed.

    Blessings,

  15. What good words today friend! Yes, we need more of this. Standing together. We can do so much more united than disjointed. This has been my hearts cry since starting the #woman2woman linkup. Thank you for these words and your heart! <3

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