For Pastors: Nine Reasons to Stop Telling Everyone They’re Awesome

stop sign 1240 x 697I’m done with people trying to tell me how awesome I am. Especially fellow pastors.

We should know better.

I don’t want a church for awesome people. I’d feel out of place.

I need a church that helps broken, sinful people find an awesome, loving and forgiving God.

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5 thoughts on “For Pastors: Nine Reasons to Stop Telling Everyone They’re Awesome”

  1. I was wondering how you would get 9 out of this. I could only think of flattery. An extension of #1 is You don’t know me. Stop posturing that you do know me and want to tweak my emotions to think you really care about me when you don’t. Flattery is common in relationships where a leader feels he must posture familiarity with his constituents and constituents need to posture support or loyalty for their leader. Neither knows each other except on the surface so it is very dishonest to project what is not real. This is so common in one to many relationships or the reverse with many to one where there is little substance of “one another” oriented life. Actual “one another” is what Jesus is after in members of his body.
    syc·o·phant
    ˈsikəˌfant,ˈsikəfənt/
    noun
    a person who acts obsequiously toward someone important in order to gain advantage.
    synonyms: yes-man, bootlicker, brown-noser, toady, lickspittle, flatterer, flunky, lackey, spaniel, doormat, stooge, cringer, suck, suck-up
    “I thought you wanted a competent assistant, not a nodding sycophant”

    This is a link to the Geico ad with Pinochio flattering his listeners and his nose grows as he says “you have untapped potential” when he doesn’t know them at all.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IzCAbRlj_gc

  2. great post Karl, and what a perfect follow up with the commercial. we could turn him into a pastor preaching, to his unknown congregation. God is Awesome, we are his sheep, lost sheep sometimes, but loved by the Shepherd

  3. People tell me I’m more than awe-some. They say my preaching is awe-full. 😉 (Sorry, I couldn’t help myself)

    More seriously, a corollary to this is to be careful how we speak of people at funerals. The media makes a hero and/or a saint out of every person that dies. Those dying under the worst circumstances are that much more hallowed. Unfortunately, I have heard pastors do basically the same thing at funerals. They talk about what a great person the deceased was and say little to nothing about the great God who transcends and defeats death. The worst have been some that imply (I hope they don’t actually believe this) that the person is in heaven now because he or she was an “awesome” person.

    1. Very true, Jim. I’ve done some funerals for some folks where it was hard to say something nice about the deceased, but I refuse to say things that aren’t true about them.

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