It's been several years since I left a toxic church situation. The root cause of my troubles seems to have been a particular female, whom I thought was my friend. There was so much ensuing chaos that it was difficult to know just where it was coming from. Actually, I'm still not sure exactly what happened, and I'll probably never know the entire story, at least while I'm living here on earth.
The perspective of hindsight is a gift. From that vantage point, I can see much more clearly that God had a plan, and that His plan is perfect. I'm out of that particular situation and my home schooled children, and my husband, survived the move to another parish. God was with us, so I had nothing to fear. (Why didn't I trust Him more then?) We've put down new roots and we're happy where we are. But I'll never get so attached to another place that it would be excruciating to leave. If something similar happened again, it would hit me like a mild breeze, instead of a hurricane.
Which brings me to the point of this post. We're fine. We survived. But what about the church bullies? What have they ultimately accomplished?
Yes, they made life miserable. But only for a season. And all of this was under the watchful eye of God, whom allowed all of this to happen, for a greater good. The main point is, when God is in control, He won't allow the bullies to prevail in the end. With God, evil will never prevail in the end.
Part of the reason I'm writing this blog is that it seems so unbelievable that a mobbing, similar to what happens in the workplace, could take place at church, among people who considered themselves good Catholics and who followed some of the rules of the faith meticulously. I want others who find themselves in a similar situation to know that this happens, and that they're not alone.
My heart now breaks for these people because they put so much effort into something that will give them no benefit in this life, or in the next life. Also, if you can mistreat one person, you will likely mistreat another. Before cutting ties, I also watched them go after someone else. Leading the charge was the same person I seemed to have the most trouble with as well.
So to anyone who's reading this, remember that this struggle is temporary. The bullies will ultimately gain nothing from it. Do not lose hope. Do not lose your faith.
Pixabay image top by Nemo
For a discussion of female malignant narcissism, please read by Female Bullies blog.