Ending Christian Euphemisms: Unteachable Spirit

We’re currently battling Christian euphemisms here on the blog.

Here’s a passage from my book, The New Christians, about my experience with one Christian euphemism while in college:

Back on campus, I chafed under some of the policies of Campus
Crusade. First, a glass ceiling inhibited women from ever achieving the coveted
position of campus director. When I asked about this, I got fuzzy arguments
from scripture–it turns out that Crusade doesn’t necessarily bar women from top
leadership positions, but the general discomfort with women’s leadership is a
part of a particular angle on biblical interpretation. This was lost on me at
the time, since I’d grown up at a church with ordained women ministers.

Second, we were being trained in so-called cold-call evangelism.
What that meant was, once per month, we left the MnM rally and spread across
campus to evangelize the unbelievers. A partner and I (because Jesus sent out
his followers two by two) went to the dorm we were assigned and began knocking
on doors. When a door was answered, we’d ask, “Are you willing to take a short
survey?” to which any undergrad who’d like to avoid homework answered, “Yes.”

Once inside, the next question we were trained to ask was, “Are
you interested in spiritual things?” Again, virtually any eighteen-year-old
will answer this question in the affirmative (hell, if you can fog a mirror,
you’ll answer yes). From there we’d launch into Crusade’s famous evangelistic
tract, “The Four Spiritual Laws.” There was no survey; we were not tabulating
any results. It was a scam, a classic bait-and-switch. We used the premise of a
survey to get inside the dorm room, steer the conversation, and get out in
under ten minutes. We had to keep moving; we has a whole dorm to canvas.

This method of evangelism troubled me deeply. I found it horribly
embarrassing to “share the gospel” with someone one night and then find myself
sitting next to her in the cafeteria the next day. It was one thing to
proselytize my anonymous seatmate on a plane (“God sat you next to that person
for a purpose,” the Crusade staffers told us)–I’d never see that person again.
It was quite another to witness to my college classmates. I hated it, and I
quickly refused to do it. Upon our release from MnM out into the front lines of
evangelism, I’d quietly steal back to my dorm room, turn out the lights, and
not answer the door.

The final nail in the coffin, it seems, came when I joined a
fraternity during the fall of my sophomore year. Back home, I’d been schooled
in what is alternatively called “lifestyle evangelism” or “friendship
evangelism.” The basic premise is that how one lives makes a more compelling case for Christian faith
than
what one says. Or as Saint
Francis of Assisi purportedly said, “Preach the gospel always, and if
necessary, use words.” With this in mind, it seemed completely natural to join
a fraternity–if any group of guys could use a Christian in their midst, it was
the Dartmouth hockey players who made up the Heorot House.

But when I pledged Heorot, that was the final straw for the
Crusade folks. I guess it meant that I had slipped into the dark world of beer
drinking and other nefarious behaviors. In January of my sophomore year, my
“discipler” sat me down at a table in Collis Student Center at Dartmouth
College and proceeded to tell me (I remember it verbatim), “The staff and
student leaders of Dartmouth Crusade met over the break, and we’ve decided that
you have an unteachable spirit.* There’s no room for you in the
leadership of Campus Crusade.”

I sat there, stunned.

“You can still come to Bible study, though,” he smiled.

Back in my dorm, I called Jeff Lindsay, my youth pastor back
home, and asked him, “Can someone get kicked out of a Christian group?”

“I guess so,” he said with sadness in his voice.

Little did I know at the time, but “unteachable spirit” is a popular euphemism used by Christian leaders (particularly conservative ones) when they mete out church “discipline” on those with whom they disagree.

  • Annie

    Ah, yes. I’ve gotten the same line.
    I wonder about this term “witness” to mean evangelism. Perhaps not a euphemism but it’s a very interesting turn of phrase.

  • Mere_Christian

    Two things come to mind in reading your opinion piece here. One is the ease at which you discard the Apostolic/Gospel message and the other is how you think there is no structure or definition of what and/or who is Christian.
    The “Emergent Church” ideology is quite alarming.
    Per Jude, Peter, John and Paul. Oh, and Jesus.
    Jude dealt with it quite definitively. No political correctness in his warning about emergent-ists in his day.

  • Wade

    I have been pondering some of this same sentiment lately. How much of what the contemporary church deems unacceptable is actually sin? Music, dancing(tasteful!), an occasional cigar, the list goes on.
    If no one had ever told me, would God have?

  • Larry

    “Unteachable spirit” isn’t a euphemism so much as it is an act of intellectual and spiritual cowardice. By claiming that someone else has an “unteachable spirit” (and doesn’t that cut both ways?), the proclaimer spares himself the trouble of actually examining what the other person believes, and why, and avoids the risk of having his own beliefs called into question and maybe even being forced to change them.
    Of course, by creating this post, Tony is going to get lots of accusations that he has “an unteachable spirit” (see above). It’s a lot easier than actually making an argument.

  • Wade

    I just reread your article…why would you be ashamed of witnessing to classmates? Romans 1:16 describes the gospel as the power of God unto salvation. Its worth sharing anytime.

  • Mere_Christian

    Jesus quized his audiences all the time.
    I don’t think Emergent theology is going to make the grade as any part of the Church universal.
    Intellectually speaking.

  • Micah

    Tony,
    I completely understand where you’re coming from, except for the fact that I didn’t have the same background that you did. I remember doing the cold-call evangelism using Evangelism Explosion. When I went out after my training (and it only took one time), I felt so deceptive. I’ve also worked for an organization that did a Ten Commandments “survey.” Thankfully, they’ve stopped using it.
    I do think that there’s too much emphasis put on verbally presenting one’s faith and not enough on living one’s faith. I understand that they’re not mutually exclusive, but one thing we’ve got to keep in mind that is that our biblical examples were verbally sharing their faith with those with whom they grew up and knew. Not complete strangers. And if anyone cites Acts 17, remember that this is one of the very few exceptions.
    Good reminder.

  • Shawn

    It’s interesting that your experience was completely different than mine with the same ministry. I too went out 2-by-2 but it was with someone who knew how to correctly approach someone and not use a bait and switch. After several attempts by a friend to have me join him as he talked with other students about Christ, I reluctantly finally agreed. However, my sole purpose was that after this ‘first time’ to use our experience and my expected response from others as a reason to NEVER go again.
    I watched as he confidently approached a variety of individuals and asked if they would be willing to talk about their spiritual journey. He proceeded to ask them question based on the things he was hearing them say, all as a means to understand that individual better. At a point he would say that he was a Christian, a follower of Christ and then ask the individual if they would like to know how a person could have a personal relationship with Christ. If it was ‘no’ then he would thank them for their time and we would move on. If ‘yes’ then he would proceed into the ‘Four Spiritual Laws’.
    That first afternoon, we had conversations with four people on our campus. No one made a decision but all had questions about Jesus or about the Bible.
    What did this show me? First, that people ARE interested in spiritual things, just like you said ‘if you can fog a mirror.’ Second, provide a platform to be heard. If we were unwilling to listen to them, them why should they listen to us? Finally, I found I wanted to see that person again in my class, dorm, laundry room, to show them that I care about them as a person, not just an item to check off my list. I would treat them like I treated everyone else. I also found that presenting the Gospel in a good way left both parties with nothing to be embarrassed about.
    Later after my friend graduated, I was still making time in my life for people God put in my path to talk with them about Jesus Christ. Many times, it included having a friend with me planned or unplanned. I remember being with a friend doing some work together. Along came another students and in the ensuing conversation, based on something he said, we started talking about his spiritual journey. It lead to me having a chance to share the Gospel (Good News) with him. After this guy left, my friend was sitting there dumbfounded. He had never see a casual conversation lead to a gospel presentation.
    My last point, it interesting you considered your joining a fraternity as the reason Campus Crusade felt you had an ‘unteachable spirit’. While I was in college, others involved with Crusade were also in the Greek system and the ministry staff actively ministered in and with the Greek system as well as being involved as Chaplains.
    Is in any case where fallible people are involved, mistakes will happen. I have made mistakes in talking with people and I have seen and read stories, your included, where the good intentions were handled incorrectly. I choose to learn from my mistakes and trust that God can use this fallible person. For a God who could write it in the sky that He is the way the truth and the life, I’m amazed He allow people to be his tool of choice to share the Good News?
    That’s why after graduating over 20 years ago with a Mechanical Engineering Degree, I joined the ministry of Campus Crusade for Christ.

  • panthera

    Tony, you do have a teachable spirit.
    I think a number of Christians, especially in America, need to define and limit God for themselves. Whether through a pretended strict adherence to the word of the Bible (easy to show that they don’t follow the Bible literally) or through an insistence on a patriarchal system or through defining their love of God through hatred of the Other.
    Having no faith, they needs must construct idolatrous systems which they then can worship.
    It’s sad and the fact that these are the people who attack Gays today shows that their worship is not based on God’s love. I have been told here countless times that I can’t be gay and a Christian, that my 25 year monogamous, faithful, true and loving partnership is the same as beastiality or pedophilia…these people aren’t witnessing to Christ. They are abusing Christianity to advance their own agenda.
    The more time I spend on Beliefnet, the clearer it becomes, we need to separate church and state.

  • Cathryn

    Hey Tony,
    Yeah, that’s the stuff that makes me cringe. To me it always left out Holy Spirit leading aspects. Funny thing was that my hubby phil got kicked out of C.C. because he prayed with a guy for healing and hmmm guess what…….. they got healed! Ok, so we KNOW that crap doesn’t work, the banging on doors and all that……. to me it’s contrived and is manipulation.
    Have a good one at C21
    blessings,
    Cathryn

  • http://danielcurran.blogspot.com/ http://danielcurran.blogspot.com/

    Dude, Ben Lemery sent me your blog post. I just read it. I’m so sorry man. On behalf of ccc I apologize. Please forgive us for spiritually micro-managing you back in college, …of for for whatever crap went down. Humbly, Daniel Curran -serving at uc berkeley

  • Frisbee Guy

    Thanks Tony for the thoughts. If I could chime in… I’m a former missionary in a closed Asian country. We did a lot of “friendship evangelism.” I noticed a trend that developed with myself and with teammates – if a local person was not “responding” in some tangible way and showing interest in Jesus, then eventually the friendship seemed to fade. It was after a long while that I realized that I was using people for the “ministry” (and nice newsletter to write to supporting churches). I wasn’t really interested them as a friend, they were actually a ministry project. I’ve seen this with a lot of missionaries and it happens a lot under the banner of “friendship evangelism.”
    I’m now a de-convert, but I have some advice for Christians… if you don’t want a Muslim (or Mormon) secretly becoming a friend with you in order to “share” their faith, then you shouldn’t do it to others. Evangelism has its own purposes and means as taught in the church, but if one considers “do unto others,” then something must change.

  • Annie

    I have had people–muslim and jehovah’s witness–pursue friendship with me in order to evangelize. I didn’t care for it. I don’t do it. If you pursue friendships for their own sake, never compromising who you are as a Christian, the Holy Spirit has some freedom to work. But that’s completely different from friendship evangelism.
    I never liked cold call tactics, either. Being ashamed of participating in those practices and being ashamed of the gospel are two entirely different things. They should not be conflated.

  • http://tomlegrand.wordpress.com Tom LeGrand

    “Two things come to mind in reading your opinion piece here. One is the ease at which you discard the Apostolic/Gospel message and the other is how you think there is no structure or definition of what and/or who is Christian.
    The “Emergent Church” ideology is quite alarming.
    Per Jude, Peter, John and Paul. Oh, and Jesus.
    Jude dealt with it quite definitively. No political correctness in his warning about emergent-ists in his day.”
    What in the WORLD are you talking about??? Where in that post did Tony “discard” the Apostolic/Gospel message?
    You clearly came on to put forth what you had already decided Emergent is, rather than simply responding to the post at hand. That’s a pretty weak approach.

  • http://tomlegrand.wordpress.com Tom LeGrand

    “Unteachable Spirit”
    My more conservative friends have actually changed that for me.
    Now, they just call me “Jackass.” Oh well!

  • http://www.theopentable.ca Andrew

    Maybe this is a bit tangential, coming out of Frisbee Guy’s comments…but I think he does bring up a good point in terms of instrumental vs. incarnational ministry.
    Whether it’s “I’ll be friends with you in order to introduce you to Jesus,” or something else along those lines, it certainly comes across as disingenuous, esp. if the friendship/relationship ends if we don’t get what we wanted out of said relationship (in the case of the Crusades, conversion).
    I can still recall being approached by two Crusaders in my first year of University, who did much as you’ve described in your book, Tony. Secret was, I did know the Jesus they were talking about, but I cringed at the methodology. Even moreso in retrospect, when I was told by leadership that I too needed to go into All The Cafeteria to Preach the Gospel (for lo, someone was watching always).
    I like the way Andy Root tackles relational ministry, and wonder if that doesn’t help us get beyond these instrumental relationships. As for an unteachable spirit, I’m afraid I might have one of those too.

  • http://www.arnizachariassen.com/ithinkibelieve Arni Zachariassen

    Kind of an anachronistic off-topic comment, but I find it ironic that you, Tony Jones, Mr. Emergent, national co-ordinator of encouraging theological engagement and excitement, should be told off for having an unteachable spirit. The open and curious stance you take toward theology is exactly what I would call a teachable spirit. One that’s humbly seeking new insight, open to what God has to say right here, right now.
    But maybe that’s exactly the point. A teachable spirit, according to people like the ones you encountered in college, is one that shears its wings and willingly submits to the ball and chain of dogmatic nostalgia.
    In light of this, it must be some sort of compliment to have an unteachable spirit!

  • Cameron

    Several years ago I had some Mormon missionaries knock on my door on a typically warm (40 C/100 F) Australian day. The poor girls—none of them would have been much older than 20—were dripping with sweat. They had been riding their bikes around our neighbourhood, but were dressed quite modestly, which wasn’t appropriate for the weather. I felt rather sorry for them and invited them in for a drink.
    I let them run their spiel on me, which was complete with flip charts and pamphlets. I agreed with a lot they had to say—they didn’t start with their more controversial claims and they were quite happy to hear I was a Christian (of sorts).
    I got the feeling that they were very lonely. I guess they were—they all had thick Utah accents and it turned out they were only a month or two from finishing their tours of duty. So when they asked if they could return, I agreed. I made a time for when my wife was going to be home.
    When they came back they brought a TV and a VCR. That suited me—we weren’t long married and we didn’t yet have any of those (apparent) luxuries. They set it all up and put on a video extolling the virtues of family and clean living.
    All the way through the video these poor girls had rather wistful looks on their faces. All of the talk about family and home (the video was definitely made in Utah!) seemed to evoke a rather strong grief reaction.
    They returned a few times afterwards. Showing us their propaganda was just an excuse to come back—it was quite clear that my wife and I understood the Bible far better than they did and they knew we weren’t going to convert. We had started to become friends, and preaching was the only thing they were allowed to go out to do.
    Sadly, they had to leave to go on to another town. They assured us they would make sure their replacements would visit us, which they did. When the new missionaries turned up we weren’t comfortable at all. We had two guys who were simply interested in the conversion count. When it became clear that we weren’t jumping ship the visits stopped.
    I’ve remembered that affair in my evangelism since. The girls were interested in us, and we were able to do something for them. The boys saw us as notches in their spiritual bed heads. The girls seemed to have the greatest effect for their gospel when they were at their weakest.
    Huh. Seems that Paul might have been on to something after all.

  • http://dragoonennoir.wordpress.com DeN

    I think there are many things done within Christianity, and perhaps especially American Christianity, that need a serious re-addressing in light of what scripture says.
    There is much that the church has done that has ‘Christianized’ secular things… such as cold calls and deceptive sales approaches on occasion.
    That said, are you sure your own attitude did not also need addressing?
    If you disagreed with your leadership, did you address it to them with love, as a brother in Christ? You mention that you “hated (that form of evangelism), and quickly refused to do it”, and that you subsequently joined a fraternity.
    In choosing these actions did you act in brotherly concert with other Christians. Do you see a ‘teachable’ spirit in your own actions?
    Certainly there are euphemisms and practices that need to be stopped. But before we concern ourselves with the speck of dust in our brothers eye, perhaps we should search carefully for planks in our own eyes.

  • panthera

    DeN,
    I had my own joyful moment with Campus Crusade when I was studying in the US several years ago.
    The University had a ecumenical meeting facility which accommodated the local conservative Jewish community, the local crisis intervention center, and the usual Christian ministries to colleges from the LDS to the Campus Crusade.
    Everybody pitched in and things worked quite well. Until my gay and lesbian group was given meeting space once a month for discussions. Campus Crusade found a buyer, bought the house which the University had leased and promptly told everyone: The gays go or all the rest of you do.
    To their credit – this was in the early 80s when the LDS was still trying to work with all Christians – everyone from the Conservative Jewish community through the LDS and even the Catholic church said: OK; they aren’t welcome, we aren’t either.
    There is no way to deal with Campus Crusade when it comes to human status for homosexuals. They hate us, they are willing to stop at nothing to achieve their goal of spreading their gospel of hatred.

  • http://dragoonennoir.wordpress.com DeN

    Hi Panthera,
    It’s one thing to criticise Campus Crusade (or any Christian organisation) for some of their practices. Honestly, this is as it should be. Christians should be held accountable to the teachings of Jesus Christ.
    This is ‘discipline’, because as Christians we need to be held accountable to that which we claim to serve.
    Part of this same discipline is looking at our own words, thoughts and deeds though, and seeing where we fall short of what we should be. If someone tells us we have an “unteachable spirit”… than perhaps we should look closely at our own walk before we condemn them for being judgemental.
    With regards to homosexuality, I think American Christianity often is in conflict with itself. It remembers that God condemns homosexuality… but it forgets that God condemns all sin. GLTB individuals are no less loved by God than any human being, and none of us is without sin.

  • http://www.divinesatisfaction.com Daniel

    So…it appears that Tony’s post on euphemisms was a euphemism…probably more accurately and excuse…to air his sour grapes toward being rebuked by an organization that he doesn’t even share the same ideology with.
    And furthermore it’s turned into an excuse for others to demonize an imperfect organization despite the many good people that are part of it and lives that have changed through God’s use of it. If I were to believe some of the comments I should call my pastor and consider the possibility of openly rebuking one of our college students for participating in such a hateful organization…I mean despite the fact that he is a genuine born-again believer, has found the organization useful to him and his christian walk, is not hateful toward any group of people and in fact gives his own time and resources to serve others. I mean, but that doesn’t matter because he happens to be a part of Campus Crusade for Christ…that awful, hateful organization that seeks to murder certain types of people and has the audacity to share the gospel with as many people as possible. Such nerve!
    I’d be willing to wager that for every 1 mistake made by CCC, however awful it might be, there are many times more lives that have been affected for the good and for the glory of God. How about a little perspective and balance!

  • http://tomlegrand.wordpress.com tom LeGrand

    Daniel,
    Again, WHAT are you talking about? Tony did not attack or try to discredit everyone from Campus Crusade (nor did anyone else). He simply shared his experience as an example of how Christianity can lose sight of the fact that not everyone agrees on everything. Why are you or other more “conservative” Christians so sensitive about this? Your defensive stance actually proves Tony’s original point.
    Tom

  • http://www.divinesatisfaction.com Daniel

    Tom,
    “Tony did not attack or try to discredit everyone from Campus Crusade”
    Perhaps not directly…or intentionally but a little “This is not representative of everyone within CCC” would be in order.
    “(nor did anyone else)”
    I’ll respectfully disagree with that statement but leave it at that.
    “Your defensive stance actually proves Tony’s original point.”
    A little thinking “out loud” here but a “defensive” stance usually implies an attack – so if I indeed have the afore mentioned stance it’s probably because I feel attacked…but maybe it’s because I have an unteachable spirit. I suppose the other option would be to have an “offensive” stance…which would inevitably get me labeled as bigot, hate-monger etc.
    I guess maybe the third option you’re looking for is the neutered response of saying nothing when you see potential problems. Or just assuming that one side of the story is the only side that matters. (ironically isn’t that what conservatives get blasted for…being one-sided?)
    Anyway, I made my points…feel free to do what you will with them. Far be it from me to try to insert a little balance.

  • http://notes-from-offcenter.com Drew Tatusko

    @ DeN
    “GLTB individuals are no less loved by God than any human being, and none of us is without sin.”
    Interesting euphemism. If you believe that LGBT folk are going to hell if they do not stop being LGBT people, then God clearly does not love them as much.
    This is what frustrates me. One the one hand we are all equal because we have all sinned as Paul was very clear in saying in Romans 3. Yet, those who sin and do not stop are somehow condemned anyway according to what you are saying. Do the work of stopping the sin and you are back in God’s bosom. yet somehow works righteousness is held in contempt.
    Why this is not considered the theological mess that it actually is is covered with wonderful euphemisms that betray the meaning of love in order to buttress social-structural specifics that are clearly rooted in exclusion, favoritism, and works-righteousness.

  • matt

    Panthera…. why do you feel the need to blindly defend all things Tony?

  • panthera

    matt -
    I really intended to take a bit of a break from discussion here at Beliefnet for awhile, the level of hatred coming in from the conservative Christians has reached the point at which no productive discussion is possible.
    Your question, however, is worthy of an answer.
    I am not defending Tony here as a knee-jerk reaction.
    First, let’s take a look at just what exactly it means when we, as Christians say to someone that they have an “unteachable spirit”. This is a comment, similar to all of those I have made to me here along the lines of ‘you’re not a real Christian because real Christians can’t be gay.’
    Both comments are based on the commenter passing judgment on another Christian. And this judgment is reserved to God. Now, I know that many conservative Christians will promptly pull out their get-out-of-Sheol for free card here and say that Christians are allowed to judge because they are righteous…but that argument is based on the rather difficult self-assumption of their own righteousness.
    And, as Christians, I thought we were all in agreement that we are incapable of our own salvation? That salvation is only open to us through the mercy, not the justice, of God, offered through Christ’s sacrificing himself for us?
    Well, you may have one or the other, but not both. If you truly believe that God meant it and all sin is equally abhorrent in his eyes, then neither of us has any business passing judgment. On the other hand, if you do feel that you, as a conservative Christian are righteous and Tony or I, as non-conservative Christians, are not righteous…well, seems to me that you are elevating yourself to a level reserved to God. Are you really prepared to say you are without sin? Are you really, truly, saying that my loving, monogamous, faithful, true and committed 25 year partnership with my husband is a ‘worse’ sin in God’s eyes than any other? That you didn’t really need salvation through Christ’s death in agony because of your righteousness?
    Frankly, I wasn’t consciously defending Tony as much as remembering a very nasty incident many years ago – a such horrendous case of injustice that even the Roman Catholics and Mormons were upset about it. Now that you have brought the matter to my attention, you know what? Yes, I am Tony’s man. I am defending him.
    Thanks, Matt, for drawing that clear, bright, shining line in the sand for me to step over. Will I always agree with Tony? Who knows, probably not.
    He does however, enjoy the benefit of the doubt with me and I’m glad you gave me the opportunity to voice that. Nobody is righteous in my book…any good to be found in us at all is that which God has lent us through His grace. Since the time has come to draw up sides, yup, my gut reaction is and will be to defend Tony. You have to stand for something in this life. I may disagree with him at some time, and if I do, I’ll mention it. But make no mistake: I’m on his side.

  • http://tomlegrand.wordpress.com Tom LeGrand

    “Anyway, I made my points…feel free to do what you will with them. Far be it from me to try to insert a little balance.”
    You actually did not make a point. You threw around sarcasm and passive aggressive remarks. If that was your “point” then job well-done. If your intent was to contribute to the dialogue, well…defensive stances usually don’t contribute much.
    If you want to insert balance, then share your personal experiences with CC that are more positive. Offer a point of disagreement based on what you know of CC. Perhaps even say, “We have to agree to disagree on this because…” (etc., etc.). Maybe even have enough humility to admit that what Tony experienced doesn’t make him a bad Christian and may not have been the best approach and maybe used some condescending terminology.
    Or are you afraid that honest, open dialogue somehow makes you weak?
    Judging from your comments, you barely even read what Tony had to say, or at the least insisted on reading it through your Campus Crusade-colored glasses. It sounds as if you made up your mind that Tony was attacking your pet group. He wasn’t.
    I don’t get the sense that you had any intention of inserting balance, just your predetermined defense of your group and insult of those who dare to suggest it might be imperfect. Very humble, way to be open and willing to improve!
    Take a look at the earlier post where a CC person actually showed some humility. You might want to find some of that.

  • http://www.divinesatisfaction.com Daniel

    Tom
    “You threw around sarcasm and passive aggressive remarks.”
    I’m sorry if that’s how you misunderstood my statements.
    Maybe a summary statement would help:
    If someone who knew nothing of CC read this post and many of the ensuing comments would they be getting an accurate portrayal of the organization?
    Example: If someone from your church treated me badly (unlovingly, hatefully etc) would you appreciate it if I went online and explained how horrible I was treated by this member of your church without expressly stating that it doesn’t necessarily mean that everyone in the church is like that?
    “You might want to find some of that.”
    Speaking of passive aggressive….:-) Ah…scratch the passive.

  • http://www.divinesatisfaction.com Daniel

    btw…as if it matters, I have never been, nor am currently involved with CC. So I don’t own that color of glasses. I understand that Tony wasn’t directly attacking CC, what I was apparently passive aggressively pointing out was that in his reaction to a bad experience he allows the reader to make possibly wrong assumptions about (a) the organization and/or (b) good people associated with the organization.
    Something else that bothers me, Tom states: “Or are you afraid that honest, open dialogue somehow makes you weak?”
    Yet, my posts have been quite honest and open…and yet I get my motives called into question and instead of continuing the dialogue the dialogue is shut down by thinly veiled insults. If I can endure this type of abuse and come out personally unscathed perhaps I’m not as weak as one might think. ;-)

  • http://stuffchristianculturelikes.com stephy

    I had a similar experience during my years in Campus Crusade, but they involved me saying words like “damn” and watching movies in boys’ dorm rooms. I was told “to much is given much is expected” meaning that since my parents were In The Ministry I should act a certain way. I don’t remember being told I had an unteachable spirit, I’m sure I’d remember that cause it’s brutal.


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