Paul regrets writing a painful letter to the Corinthians (2 Cor. 7: 8, 9). But he is pleased that at least they weren’t as terrible as he was and they used their pain to do the right thing. He wrote a hurtful letter. He’s sorry. But somehow they turned this terrible event around to make themselves better people. This isn’t about the effectiveness of Paul’s meanness. This is about the quality of the Corinthians.
I know many people who are simply amazing. They have a wisdom about them, and are more resilient than others. Why? Because they’ve endured and survived abuse and have somehow risen out of the ashes of their suffering as incredibly deep.
This does not mean that we should abuse people so that they can be deeper or learn resilience. Of course not!
Unfortunately, this is how much of the church operates. People have no qualms about abusing people, humiliating them, embarrassing them in public, and shaming them. As long as it achieves the desired result.
And if it doesn’t achieve the desired result, the victim is blamed for not responding the way they should have.
It’s a trap!