John Loren Sandford noted that, “A shrike is a bird that impales its victim on a thorn and then tears it apart muscle by muscle. In human terms, a shrike is a person who so gathers all the righteousness to himself or herself that everyone else must act out wickedness. Then in the very act of seeming to try to help, the shrike actually destroys the other bit by bit. Worse, the shrike actually thinks he or she is truly trying to be loving and helpful.”
Many believers have shrike-like tendencies in the Body of Christ. They believe in their own self-righteousness while believing that everyone else is wicked or unrighteous. Pretending to help others, they are actually destroying the lives of many believers.
I am reminded of what Jesus said: “Do not judge others, and you will not be judged. For you will be treated as you treat others. The standard you use in judging is the standard by which you will be judged. “And why worry about a speck in your friend’s eye when you have a log in your own? How can you think of saying to your friend, ‘Let me help you get rid of that speck in your eye,’ when you can’t see past the log in your own eye? Hypocrite! First get rid of the log in your own eye; then you will see well enough to deal with the speck in your friend’s eye.” Matthew 7:1-5 (NLT)
Beware of believers who are always trying to tell you how you should walk. While I believe that we must hold one another accountable, it needs to be done out of genuine love and concern by believers who are mature, experienced and humble. The Bible says: “Dear brothers and sisters, if another believer is overcome by some sin, you who are godly should gently and humbly help that person back onto the right path. And be careful not to fall into the same temptation yourself.” Galatians 6:1 (NLT)
Holding believers accountable and being a shrike are two different concepts. A shrike is a self-righteous person who believes they are righteous, and everyone else is unrighteousness. What is tragic about shrike believers is that they think they are acting out of love.
My dear children, beware of shrikes in the Kingdom. Remember, as pastors and leaders, we are called to preach the Book!
Your Spiritual Father
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