Odds are there are some people you just don’t like. I wish it were not so. But try as I might, and I do try, there are some folks that it is just hard for me to like.
And, odds are it will be true for you too: You may not like them for moral reasons, or it may be because of hygiene, or it could be their personality is abrasive to you or they are loud and get on your nerves or are quiet and get on your nerves.
Now notice: We tend to vilify that which we don’t like so that we can justify our not liking it/them. We would do better to just be honest wouldn’t we?
And odds are some people won’t like you: NOW, preacher friend, may I politely say, “get over yourself”? Accept the fact, some people won’t like you. Sometimes it will be because you are too loud or sometimes because they think you are too quiet. Sometimes it will be because you stand for something they don’t like. Sometimes it will be that they don’t like your style of preaching. Sometimes it will be that they just don’t like preachers in general (the way some of us treat some people that shouldn’t surprise us). Sometimes it will just be personality. And sometimes it will be plain silly, they don’t like your shirt or your size or you hair or your wife.
Now, get that look of surprise off your face! How fair is it for you not to like some people and for you not to expect some people not to like you? Accept it. They can love the church, they can be involved and should be, they can be faithful to God and not be a fan of yours. As long as they are fanatical concerning Christ! It is not easy to deal with this reality or with those who decide not to like us but it’s OK. Help them love God in spite of you and don’t take their opportunity to serve away because they don’t like you.
And, yes, I needed to hear myself preach this sermon more than anyone I know. I’m working on it :)
See: Acts 15:38-39; Romans 12:18.