How to handle a bully as a Christian

how to handle a Christian bully

Handling bullies as a Christian Woman is a tricky situation. Our nature in Christ makes fighting back so hard to figure out. Let me also say early in this Christian lifestyle blog post that if there is one thing I cannot stand, it is a bully! Bullies are pathetic and prey on those they think won’t or cannot fight back. Bullies love Christians because they see us as easy targets. Why? Because they often associate us as weak, “turn the other cheek” sort of people. Those bullies need a good theologian because I feel Jesus was never one to run from a bully. Yes, He taught us to turn the other cheek, but He stood up for the Kingdom and for what was right. He just didn’t use His fists. Hey, just because I’m a Christian doesn’t mean I’ll wimp out when cornered. Jesus didn’t, and neither will I. To handle a bully as a Christian means you don’t compromise the statutes of the Lord. It doesn’t mean you cower.

It’s important to note and remember that the weapons we fight with are not the ones used in this world.

The scripture to remember when dealing with a bully is:

2 Corinthians 10:4: “The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds.”

The enemy loves nothing more than to try to get us to “fight” as the world fights. He pushes, pushes, and likes to huff, puff, and threaten to blow our house down! He tempts us to act unseemly, but we can’t give in to those temptations. How to handle a bully as a Christian is not to stoop to their level.

I’ll tell you what to do.

We fight like Jesus fought – again, not like the world. The world fights with curse words (i.e., “I will curse you out!” and physical blows (i.e., I’ll beat your butt like I was your mama!”).

That’s not our way at all. Sometimes, we may wish we could fight like that. That’s the way that comes naturally to us because it appeals to our carnal nature, doesn’t it? But, no, we don’t roll like that. We choose to walk in the spirit, so we don’t fulfill the desires of that carnal nature.

“So I say, let the Holy Spirit guide your lives. Then you won’t be doing what your sinful nature craves.”
Galatians 5:16 (NLV)

Tip # 1 to handle a bully as a Christian: Stay calm

As Christian women, we have to do our level best to keep a cool head and embrace righteous indignation while still walking in the love of Christ. It ain’t easy! Trust me; I know how difficult that is. I struggle with the whole “holding my peace” thing just as much as anyone else. That’s why I wrote this Christian post on how to handle a Christian bully!

Christian Sister, people can take you “there”.

They will try to make you act ugly, and sometimes, I think it is for their own personal gratification.

Sinners influenced by the enemy want you to fail in order to confirm that Christianity doesn’t work or there’s nothing to it. Nevertheless, Christianity is all about trusting God to fight your battles while allowing the Holy Spirit to order your steps along the way. They don’t understand that. I don’t think they can because it’s spiritually discerned. The Bible tells us precisely that.

Dealing with bullies as Christian woman

Don’t let the bully affect you, Christian Lady.

Don’t let them in your head, Girl! Life’s bullies often seem so much bigger than we are, way more skilled than we are, or even smarter than we are.

Other times, it’s none of that.

They just have a power advantage in the workplace or [dare I say it] in ministry. Yes, bullies exist in the church. *sigh* They go on power trips and drag everyone else with them. That so blows, doesn’t it?

Think about Goliath in 1 Samuel 17. Notice in verse 8 that the scripture says he “stood and shouted” at the people. That’s what they do. They make noise!

Bullies rarely whisper. How to handle a bully as a Christian is not to yell back the same way they are yelling.

It wasn’t so bad Goliath was talking “loud and drawing a crowd” as it was what he was saying. My mom calls what he did in verses 8 and 9 “issuing woof tickets” or talking “smack.” Bullies love to talk smack or bunk! Goliath was no different. He was saying all sorts of crazy things to God’s people and making sure they could hear it.

That’s when the people of God jumped up and took him down, right? NOPE! It would have been nice if they did, but they didn’t. It kept going on and on. Do you know a bully with a big mouth?

Don’t be a scared Christian Woman!

The Bible says after “hearing the Philistine’s words, Saul and all the Israelites were dismayed and terrified.” They fell for it. Goliath sold them a bill of goods and had God’s folks paralyzed with fear. All that noise and theatrics scared them to pieces. They were shaking in their sandals!

You know, I think flesh-covered bullies are more bark than bite most of the time. They just want to scare us and have us shaking in our platform sandals, too.  They want us to run away with our tails between our legs, defeated and beaten without even trying to fight! Boo on that!

In her article in Science World magazine, “What Makes A BULLY TICK?” Jacqueline Adams said bullying is largely something people learn to do and become. That means they are likely either victim of it directly in their own lives or were growing up. Somehow, they learned it, which is really sad when you think about it. Something happened to them to make them the way they are, and more often than not, whatever happened was NOT a good thing. That should prompt some compassion and some pity from Christians.

My tip on how to handle a bully as a Christian:

I had a workplace bully several years ago. She was awful. I’d never met anyone so mean and vicious in my life.

She tested me on a daily basis. She was the interim CEO and tried so hard to intimidate me with her title, but it never worked. After all, I knew who I was in the Lord, I was stubborn, and I, again, can’t stand a bully. As a result, none of it worked for me.

Once, she was being HORRIBLE to us in a meeting. She was cursing, yelling, and acting like a nutcase. I surveyed the room, and everyone looked so defeated. Most people were looking downward. It hurt my heart. I need someone to know how to handle a bully as a Christian, but most of them were shaking in their boots – just as I was.

Honey, something rose up in me.

Even though I was a fairly new staffer, I was NOT having it! I spoke up and said, “You don’t have to yell at us like that, and you certainly don’t have to curse at us! That’s inappropriate, and that’s not acceptable! I will not allow you to talk to me like that another minute.” Yes, I did! I said it, and I meant it!

Well, what happened next surprised me and everyone in the room. The bully started to cry…right there in the meeting, she started to cry. I felt awful at the moment, so I cried too. She didn’t apologize but stormed out of the room. The group heralded me as a hero and praised me. I quickly told them, “No, this is not a good thing. I never want to hurt anyone.”

When the CEO returned, I apologized if my delivery had hurt her, but not for what I had said. Can’t remember how it played out from there, but I will say I still work there years later, and she doesn’t.

Tip 2: Remember Jesus has all the power, NOT the bully.

As a Christian woman dealing with a bully, ask yourself, “What can she/he really do to me, anyway?”

Matthew 10:28 New International Version (NIV)

“Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell.”

Don’t be afraid of “fear” either…

Christian Sister, we all get scared. I know I do, and I can certainly relate to falling for a bully’s menaces and tauntings. Can’t you? Fear in itself can be paralyzing, but only if you let it take root. That’s the difference between the children of Israel and David. The children of Israel let the fear take root. They fell for it. I think it’s best to quickly acknowledge the fear and do what you need to do to get rid of it or get it under control.

The first step for harnessing fear is to remember the bully is NOT in charge; Jesus is!

Understanding that will give you the perspective you need to keep everything under control in your mind. You will know how to handle a bully as a Christian when you quiet the fearful thoughts and be able to hear the only voice that matters – the Holy Spirit’s.

What I do when I’m afraid…

What works best for me is to run to scripture to soothe my fears. I scour through Psalms until I find one that calms my spirit. I always find one eventually. The Holy Spirit has a way of guiding you to just what you need! You should try it the next time you feel afraid of a bully or anything else for that matter.

Another tip is what one of my best girlfriends likes to do: she will pop on worship music. That helps her feel strong and brave at the moment.

What do you do when you’re afraid? Jesus tells us time and time again that we don’t have to fear the bullies of the kingdom of darkness. We just need a strategy or a plan. Mine is running to Psalms. What’s yours?

Remember, Jesus is our mighty Vindicator and will fight our battles and cause us to triumph every single time. The world may think you’ve “lost” against a bully, but you haven’t.

Now thanks be unto God, who always causeth us to triumph in Christ and who maketh manifest through us the savor of His knowledge in every place.
2 Corinthians 2:14

Girl, we NEVER lose in Jesus Christ!

This truth caused David to inquire (likely just as loud as Goliath was screaming):

who is this uncircumcised Philistine that he should defy the armies of the living God?”

Confidence in Jesus gives you the power to fight the bully – any bully in any form.

Don’t you fear the flesh-covered bully, Christian Lady!

When you encounter a bully, try not to succumb to fear. I can’t say that enough. Fear is NOT the way to handle a bully as a Christian.

Listen, David refused the weapons the folks handed to him. What they tried to give was the traditional armor of warriors. They meant well, but he didn’t care for them because they didn’t quite fit. Those weapons were not for him.

The world’s way of fighting won’t “fit” you either.

Just like David, Christian Sister, refuse the “world’s” weapons! They aren’t for you! They won’t fit!

People will want you to curse, yell, or “tell a bully off.” But that’s not our way of handling things. That’s not our armor or weapon. It won’t fit; it won’t work. Fight the flesh-covered bully with God’s tactics.

Do you see the parallel, Christian Woman?

Man’s traditional way of handling bullies simply won’t work for you EVER. You’re different. You’re God’s daughter. The Holy Spirit lives inside you. Because of this, you handle a bully as a Christian with love but also firm resolve.

Instead of even trying to fight with the world’s weapons, turn to what you know is tried and true – God’s Word.

Christians are known for dealing with mean people by walking in love. It’s our spiritual tattoo or marker.

We follow the example of Jesus Christ, who taught unconditional love and forgiveness. One of the main Christian values is to treat others with kindness and respect, even when faced with hostile individuals. It’s who we are.

The way we respond to bullies can vary depending on the situation. Sometimes, they may choose to withdraw and not respond to provocation, knowing that love covers a multitude of sins.

Other times, we may choose to confront mean bullies with gentleness and truth, hoping to bring about a change in their behavior.

The Bible teaches us to pray for our enemies and bless those who curse us. This doesn’t mean we have to tolerate evil acts, but rather that we choose to respond to bullies with love and compassion.

Ultimately, we believe that love is stronger than hatred, so we NEVER hate. By loving those who are mean to us, we really can bring light into darkness. However, this doesn’t mean we are perfect and never make mistakes. Like everyone else, Christians are also prone to error, s.

Remember, whether we have to stand up to handle a bully as a Christian or turn the other cheek, the ultimate goal is to reflect the love of God and invite others to experience that same grace and love.

Tip 3: Know your Christian Arsenal
(i.e., your weapons as you handle a bully as a Christian)

With that said, here are your spiritual weapons…

First, you have the “belt of truth”.

Next is the breastplate of righteousness and the gospel of peace.

Don’t forget the shield of faith, the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit.

Finally, without prayer, you’re lost! You absolutely must pray.

Pray for your flesh-covered bully. Pray for wisdom on how to handle them. Speak only blessings on them. That’s what Christians do. We bless those who persecute us.

Read through Ephesians 6:13-18 below:

 13 Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. 14 Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place,15 and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace16 In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one.17 Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.

18 And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.

Don’t you dare flinch when the enemy jumps at you, Christian Woman…

With all this, when the enemy flexes his muscles on you, put on the whole armor of God so you can stand against his stupid tricks and schemes. Handle a bully as a Christian with truth, righteousness, peace, faith, salvation, and the Holy Spirit!

Don’t stand “terrified.” Stand firm bold, and watch the salvation of your God. Instead of being paralyzed by fear, determine in your heart to love your flesh-covered enemy, act justly, and reflect Christ in EVERY interaction with them.

I know it’s hard, but I’m talking to myself too.

NO! Don’t be a chump, Christian Sister!

Again, whatever you do, don’t buckle or become intimidated!

Again, you are God’s girl, and He will deliver you from any strong enemy!

He will allow you to love and forgive that bully while speaking and doing what is right in His sight. Knowing how to handle a bully as a Christian is an exercise in listening. Listening to the Lord and listening to wise counsel.

So, take your spiritual “rocks” in your hand and get ready to rumble in the spirit! Note: I mean “spiritual rocks.” Don’t go hitting anyone upside the head with a brick and saying I told you to do it. *hehe*

Tip 4: Don’t forget your compassion.

Oh wait…you’ll need compassion to handle a bully as a Christian

Try not to take the bully too personally. Remember, some people hurt folks because they are so inwardly bruised and have been wounded by others. The result is continuing the cycle of pain. Remember what I said earlier?

Pray for them, but don’t become their repeated victim. I don’t think God wants that. It’s OK to set boundaries and, sometimes, add distance. Let the Holy Spirit lead you.

Final scripture for the best way to handle a bully as a Christian:

For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies,
but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world,
against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil
spirits in the heavenly places.
Eph 6:12

Stay strong. Stay vigilant and remember WHO is really in charge of you and your future. Hint: it’s NOT the bully.

Tips to handle a bully as a Christian

Reference:

Adams, J. (2006, Oct 23). What makes A BULLY TICK? Science World, 63, 10-13,T7. Retrieved from https://ezproxy2.library.colostate.edu/login?url=https://www-proquest-com.ezproxy2.library.colostate.edu/magazines/what-makes-bully-tick/docview/218140337/se-2?accountid=10223


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