When I recently spoke with a family that had stopped coming to church, I heard every kind of "reason" imaginable. They began tearing down and talking badly about other members. They also criticized the Sunday School teachers and the leadership.
They also had many "reasons" why they believed God not only understood them but blessed them in their Sunday morning services around the tv preachers.
However they could be persuaded to come back if they could, 1. Have their old pew back, 2. Teach the jr church EVERY Sunday, and 3. If so and so would publicly apologize to them.
Well now! I was speechless.
And to make matters worse when they became disgruntled and left in the first place, they went all through the community trying to degrade our church and it's members.
They were a loose cannon.
A cannon on a ship was a wonderful asset. It was used for protection and to keep the vessel and passengers safe. But if a cannon got loose, it was a terrible hazard causing much harm to the vessel and the passengers.
loose cannon (Wictionary)
(nautical) a cannon that breaks loose during battle or a storm and causes serious damage to the ship and its crew
(idiomatic, by extension) an uncontrolled or unpredictable person who causes damage to their own faction,
When will God's people ever learn to handle conflicts in the way God designed? Jesus teaches this in Matthew chapter 18.
"If your brother sins, go and show him his fault in private; if he listens to you, you have won your brother. But if he does not listen to you, take one or two more with you, so that by the mouth of two or three witnesses every fact may be confirmed. (Matthew 18:15, 16 NASB)
If people were brave enough and godly enough to do this many problems could be resolved. But people would rather go and tell "their story" to anyone who will listen.
God cannot be pleased. I have said it before and I say it again, if I fail you or let you down, and I will someday, come to me! Let's talk through it. I can take it and I promise to try to keep my cannons tied done tight.