You don’t have to do everything you’re told.
Ha! So true!
Amen to not having to do everything you’re told. Having served around people that did, I thought how embarrassed I would be as an adult to have allowed someone else to treat me like that. I don’t mean this as a put-down. I just mean when the realization hits a person that they’ve allowed themselves to be bullied and that they didn’t have to take it, particularly from those leaders that didn’t exert physical abuse, but had a lot of bark and very little bite. That’s how some leaders rule–they just snarl a lot and since no one has ever challenged them, they continue in that. But when you realize that you don’t have to obey and that you can challenge and question and that very little will happen to you that you can’t control, you find yourself becoming braver. Oh, they may belittle you or try to shame you in front of others, but with your head held high, you can hold your ground or just simply walk away. One thing I’ve found, is that in those situations, people may not say a lot in your defense, but later they come to you and express their support and admiration. So, if it looks and feels like you’re the only one disagreeing with the leader, rest assured you’re not. You’re just simply one of the brave ones who stood up and took a risk.
In 15 years as a member of my small Lutheran church in Southern California, not once has the pastor ever told me, or anyone else that I am aware of, what to do.
I wish people in other churches had the same sort of freedom.
That’s the reason that I maintain my blog after all these years. So that those caught up in all this self-focused, spiritual ladder-climbing religion might realize that there is a better way…without having to chuck the whole thing overboard.
I’d wager David, that three out of the 4 sitting in the pew responding with a blind “How High?”, will also declare that their pastor has never told them what to do.
Excellent cartoon today! Try not to let this go to your head…but you’re really good at this.
thanks gary. i won’t.
Good point, Gary. I think part of the problem is that we are taught to respect authority, and with that I have no problem. But that often gets confused with blind allegiance, and the two are not the same. You can even respect a person while questioning them or disagreeing with them.
You mean that this isn’t “godly” or “biblical” leadership?
yep, that’s what i mean.
Steve … Try using your freedom to state some disagreement with your pastor about an issue of doctrine, or even better, an issue of love … You may quickly find out that the relationship is tightly based on agreement, and not on mutual respect between two equal adults. It’s just a guess, I admit, but many of us thought we were in a safe system … Until it was revealed not to be.
Those of us who have experienced these things kind of read between the lines of your comments … You rarely speak as an individual, or without mentioning the system you’re a part of …
So what would it actually be like to “chuck the whole thing overboard?” And what would be the problem with doing so?
Mar, am looking forward to Steve’s reply to you. I’ve decided to hold my breath…
Helen, you might turn blue….careful
It was not my desire to ridicule Steve in any way … That would be opposite of my intent … My desire was to ask the questions I wish someone had asked me in love far sooner … I am still in process of trying to “individuate” from the system which had me so mind controlled that I believed I would be unsafe without it … That is why I asked, with what I hope is a tone of gentleness, “what would be the problem with chucking the system overboard?” What remains might be a beautiful, beautiful thing …. And the safest place of all.
Only teasing because Steve is notorious here for not answering questions. I hope he answers yours. But I’m not sure what kind of answer you will receive as he is firmly within the system.
Mar, come to think of it, you might like David’s other site and find gentler answers there.
Accurate in many ways for sure. I’m not sure if there’s many churches out there still “Telling” people how high to jump but I’m sure thry’re there. Outsiders come seeking and hopefully they find not some to “tell” them how to move mechanically but but simply tell them what Jesus said as he quoted isaiah;
“The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the “gospel” to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised”
Politics has entered some churches, national, provincial, and state
Jesus said give to caesar whats caesar’s and give to God what’s God…..he then went and continued being about his father’s business. Let’s focus on that.
His yolk is easy and his burden is light. I hope the pastor in the cartoon is shouting encouragement to “jump” into that. lol. probably not. If he is, his congregation will need some discipleship and reprograming for sure.