The Weight of Confrontation

Chapter 7 shows the very emotionally vulnerable and human side of Paul once again as he expresses his deep grief and turmoil from having to confront them about their sin and bring correction. He tells them that he doesn’t regret it, even though he said that he did regret it because of the pain it caused them both because it eventually brought repentance. He had been speaking a lot about the comfort he received from Titus over the past few chapters, and he finally explains why in chapter 7. After Paul’s confrontation there was a deep relational fracture between he and the church. He felt the weight of the unresolved conflict even though he knew that his confrontation and correction was right and necessary. This is healthy even though it’s painful because it shows that his correction was truly motivated by love. Paul was broken and full of grief as he sat in the unresolved state, and this is when he began writing this letter we call “2 Corinthians” trying desperately to repair his relationship with the church.  When Titus came to them, he was able to act as a buffer between them and Paul. Because of this repentance came to the church and they were able to share with Titus their love and affection towards Paul as their spiritual father. When Titus came back to Paul, he was able to share those conversations with Paul and it brought peace to his broken heart since he had been carrying the weight of that unresolved conflict. This chapter felt so relatable to me. We have all had to have hard conversations and confrontations. These conversations only go well when they are done in love, but the hard thing about love is it comes with all the grief and pain because love isn’t love without this vulnerability. Nobody likes to be corrected, so confrontations feel a lot like rejection or disapproval even when they are done in love. A broken person often perceives the correction this way and it can even delay their response to own and repent of their issues if they become defensive. Titus was a safe person to buffer between Paul and the church and repentance was achieved and the relationship was repaired. Sometimes we have an opportunity to be that buffer person and we may not realize what we have been thrown into. We have to be careful that we don’t take sides with people when they are emotional so that we are able to be a buffer to them for their good and for the good of their relationships. Whether we find ourselves in need of a difficult conversation, or we realize we are in the middle of someone else’s conflict, we have to be very careful in our discernment when emotions are involved. What we say and how we respond matters and we can either help repair, like Titus did or we can cause damage and possibly harden someone from their repentance if we speak to appease an emotional person.

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