UPDATED: 11/22/07 w/Video at the bottom [h/t: Ryan

First let me say that I do not like myself when I play this game.
And wow, does it come out all over the freaking place: pastors,
members, family, work, ect.   

The exchanges go something like this . . .

Someone says . . . [pretty much anything]I
say . . . [something about me that proves to you why you should respect
me and/or why you should think I am as wonderful as I think I am]

Now
I know sometimes people share stories about themselves out of pure joy
and excitement.  That is awesome and I love hearing about experiences
that are truly transformative and help me to better get to know who you
are.   I also know that sometimes we share stories about ourselves
because people are interested and curious about our histories and
stories.  These are both wonderful relationship development disciplines
and when done, feel really good!

The kind of sharing that irks me is the kind done in order to try
and earn someone’s respect or to address our own insecurity in a
particular context.  Like so many things, I guess it is more about the
motivation for the sharing that I am lifting up. 

Sharing the brings to focus to ME = BAD
Sharing that bring focus to God’s actions in my life = GOOD

My advice to myself . . .

PROBLEM: We do this.
SOLUTION: Stop it right now!

PROBLEM: "Great story, but let me tell you about ME!"
SOLUTION: Listen to the other person without thinking about how I am going to respond with a story about ME. 

PROBLEM: Surely this person needs help in getting to know how wonderful I am!
SOLUTION:
Give folks the benefit of the doubt that they will take the time to get
to know me without my having to prove to them how wonderful I am.   

PROBLEM: Lets skip all the get-to-know you small talk and let me just tell you how wonderful I am.
SOLUTION: Be secure enough allow folks to develop their opinion of me
not by what they know I have DONE, but by how they experience how I
AM.

If
we are truly to be in relationship we have to take the time to commit
to the other, pure and simple.  This kind of time, both face-to-face as
well as in Social Media context must not be taken lightly.  HOW we
interact has, I believe, more impact and importance than the
information that may be shared.  In fact, I think that HOW we act can
destroy the validity of any of our convictions no matter how noble.

Stop getting sucked into the game.  Don’t play.  It is no good for
anyone.  Plus if folks will only respect me because of what I tell them
I have done, that is not the kind of respect that I want or need.
Really it isn’t.

Lastly . . . while boy pastors may be the main perpetrators of these
acts of insecurity, let it be known that the girls are sucked into this
game as well.  I have seen it and it is just as sad.  Consistency and
integrity between the BEing and DOing spirit knows no gender, class or
culture bounds . . . thank God!

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