Touchy or Sensitive?

When speaking of Syntyche, one of the two sisters Paul encourages to be of the same mind (Phil. 4:2), it is not uncommon to hear her referred to as “soon touchy.” Sadly, there are many “touchy” saints. They often have severe reactions to the slightest criticism, many times reading more into a statement by a brother or sister than was ever intended. They often misunderstand what is said, or why something is said. They are easily offended, and it is not uncommon for them to threaten to leave the assembly over the slightest matter. In some cases they simply walk off from the assembly without ever saying a word, only to appear in another assembly where the whole scenario is often repeated.

While there are many touchy saints, there are too few sensitive ones. Those who are not concerned about themselves, but rather for other saints. Long before others are aware, they sense when others are discouraged or are drifting away from the Lord’s things. They catch the little deflections in the voice, or the little expressions of pain, while others are too busy to notice. Interestingly, we rarely find sensitive saints who are touchy. They are too concerned about others to be overtaken with self-pity.

Bringing it down to a personal level, what type of saints are we? Are we always complaining and wallowing in self-pity, or are we so sensitive to the needs of others that we are insensitive to those little hurts that may come our way? May we all be less touchy, and more sensitive to the needs of others. (Phil. 2:3–5)