Monday, September 08, 2014
The Problem of Personality
This is the troubling reality of the personality-based leadership that encompasses much of American evangelicalism. Often, charisma and dynamic communication skills trump character and integrity as popular appeal wins the day. And for those of us who wish it were otherwise, there is no court of appeal with the authority to hear our case. Replete with positives, this remains one of the great weaknesses of contemporary evangelicalism.It also remains the source of much of the corruption that erupts within the church and so deeply besmirches the name of the Lord.
And don't misunderstand me, institutional system are prone to abuses on the other end of the spectrum, of such much of Christ's ministry was born - certainly the Reformation was born of such, and my church is currently so far from on the straight and narrow as to be laughable. The difference is institution can be fixed. The Catholic Church reformed itself - eventually. I believe the PCUSA will eventually get fixed - though it may not happen in my lifetime. Institutions contain within themselves the mechanisms for reform.
Personality driven ministry does not. Personality driven ministry tends to shoot the messenger of reform - I have seen it happen over and over and over again. Those who see clearly the problems in the church are simply ostracized or outright banished.
The Christian is meant to live in community for these reasons - so too is the church.
church community reform