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Eggshells 3

April 29, 2007


I really think there is a lot that can be said on this subject, But I am trying not to unpack it all at one time. Danny commented last time that “Are you kidding…” saying that of course there are things at church you can’t bring up. That used to be my experience too. That you just didn’t question certain things or if you did you would receive a label that would not be a friendly one. No one thought, wow he/she really searches for the truth.

I will get to it later, but such a place where you can be yourself not only can exist, those places DO exist.

This time I wanted to address the common thought that says we should all just get along. That you shouldn’t say what you think because of how it might upset others. Or how you know that that is not what “we” think.

there is the problem I mentioned of “Group Think” where a group is dysfunctional Irving Janis observed the following about such groups

Eight symptoms that he said were indicative of groupthink:

  1. Illusion of invulnerability
  2. Unquestioned belief in the inherent morality of the group
  3. Collective rationalization of group’s decisions
  4. Shared stereotypes of outgroup, particularly opponents
  5. Self-censorship; members withhold criticisms
  6. Illusion of unanimity (see false consensus effect)
  7. Direct pressure on dissenters to conform
  8. Self-appointed “mindguards” protect the group from negative information

Finally, the seven symptoms of decision affected by groupthink are:

  1. Incomplete survey of alternatives
  2. Incomplete survey of objectives
  3. Failure to examine risks of preferred choice
  4. Failure to re-appraise initially rejected alternatives
  5. Poor information search
  6. Selective bias in processing information at hand (see also confirmation bias)
  7. Failure to work out contingency plans

That kind of closed loop results in this tiptoeing. Because the “mindguards” will come after you for stepping out of line.

The other problem I think is that by not speaking or doing the truth that you understand you are in fact are being what the Apostle Paul called a hypocrite. The word then meant actor. But when Paul rebukes Peter for his going along with the Judizers just to keep the peace, tiptoeing around the truth that he knew he was pretending to be something he wasn’t. He was in fact once again denying the truth. Just like he did those 3 times we make such a good story out of. He knew the truth. He hid the truth. He wanted to get along. He wanted to be liked. He was a hypocrite.

When you hide the truth and walk on eggshells you may very well be keeping God’s will, his kingdom from being done. Your pretending may be keeping someone from knowing Jesus. Because who they see is not the real you.  They don’t see the person God has resurrected in you.  They don’t see the strength of you life which has overcome the enemy. Who they see is a fake. When that happens you both lose.

3 Comments leave one →
  1. paul permalink
    April 29, 2007 5:27 pm

    I think he said, “Speak the truth in love.”

  2. April 30, 2007 10:34 am

    Keep leading us in this study, my brother, and see where God takes it.

    I like your points, but there are considerations and boundaries when it comes to speaking up when it concerns the faith of weaker Christians. This is what Romans 14, parts of 1st Corinthians 8 & 10 and Galatians 5 is about.

    Yes, these verses have been mightily abused to suppress truth speakers and truth seekers. The “stumbling block” card has been played too many times to prevent growth and progress in churches. That is the egg shell thing.

    But at the same we do have responsibilities not to injure those weaker- and sometimes according to Paul that means being quiet. (Romans 14:19-22)

    Sometimes it takes wisdom and good judgment to know the difference between a true stumbling block situation and just someone who is a grumbling block.

  3. April 30, 2007 9:28 pm

    I remember the eggshells.

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