I came across this fictitious letter from a 1976 Bardwell, Kentucky bulletin. We need to let God’s will be done without our selfish interference. This isn’t about us.
Dear Brother Paul,
I have been discriminated against, offended and harassed, and it looks like I may be withdrawn from. I just want you to know that YOU are to blame. You see, I’m a member of the church here in Ephesus, and well, it’s like this: I don’t believe it is necessary for us to always attend church.
Why do I blame you? Do you remember how you talked to our elders over at Miletus? Well after they got back home, they’ve never been the same. Nowadays, every time I miss worship, they’re over at my house pumping me, nosing into my business. It’s nobody’s business what I do! And YOU talk about freedom in Christ!
Then, too, Timothy told us what you wrote him. You know, Timothy would be a nice guy if you would just leave him alone.
In your letter to Timothy you said something about “rebuke, reprove, exhort with all long-suffering and doctrine.” Well, he’s started doing that in every sermon! Most of the time he looks straight at me!
Also he mentioned what you said about Hymeneus and Philetus, and I tell you I almost lost my temper. Those two good men are related to me and you had no right to insult them. These things aren’t THAT important and you need to stop making more out of things than are necessary!
And another thing. You’ve hurt my reputation here. Demetrius and I belong to the same civic organization. He tells me you came here and hurt his business. I told him that I’m not as fanatical as you are and that I don’t always go along with you in everything. But, he still doesn’t treat me the same way that he did before your meddling.
It’s evident that if I keep my membership here where they have endorsed your work, even your fanaticism against sin (Nobody’s perfect you know!), I’ll never be elected to higher office.
I have to close this letter because I have to write to Demas to express my sympathy to him after the way you embarrassed him!
Yours in this life only,