Monthly Archives: March 2015

Guilt Motivation

What % of pastors preach down to people or use guilt motivation? This question comes from my coaching and mentoring practice. It is not unusual for people to leave a church service “beaten up” or “beaten down” depending on the verbiage of the client. Why do preachers preach this way? Where does it come from? Is it from their insecurities, a faulty Holy Spirit theology, a moral twist in their character or somewhere else? I do not see Jesus or the Apostles preaching that way but it seems this is a style for some preachers.

Why is this so? I posted this question recently (3/12/15) on social media. Because of the feedback I received, this is an expanded treatment of that question. 

It is well known that negative preaching is some of the easiest preaching. Preachers who are unprepared or unlearned often default to negative, judgmental, and legalistic preaching when they have nothing else to say. However, there could be more in the mix here. Let’s consider some options.

The preacher is insecure: Insecure preachers hide behind a mask. In their fear of being found out, they preach down to others to lift-up themselves.

The preacher is unprepared: The man may be unprepared due to all the plates he is spinning or laziness. Preachers who are unprepared may go negative, preaching louder and louder, to cover up the lack of real substance.

A faulty Holy Spirit theology: Rather than preaching the truth with clarity and passion while giving the Holy Spirit space and time to bring illumination and conviction, some preachers see their role of doing the correcting themselves. When they do not see an immediate response to their messages, guilt motivation is the default card they play. This is sometimes described as “beating the sheep.” I recall Jesus telling us to feed sheep. I do not recall Him tell us to beat the sheep.

A moral twist in their character: One of the indicators of a moral twist in a person is they have an argumentative spirit. A moral twist in a preacher leads quite naturally to negative and judgmental preaching. Many years ago, a well-known preacher preached harder and louder against all the immorality in our land. Later, he was exposed as being deeply involved in the very immorality he preached against.

Performance-based acceptance: We see this in the world but we do not need it in the church. Performance based acceptance says, “You do what I say and I like you. You do not do what I say and I do not like you.” Most church attenders want to like their pastor and want their pastor to like them. Many parishioners will conform to the style and the demands of the preacher because if they do not, he may not speak to them or visit them when they are in the hospital.

Praise God for the godly men who hold the torch high everyday. Praise God for those who study to show themselves approved unto God, as workmen who need not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. May we always strive to preach the truth without any mixture of error. Some topics are difficult to address. We are passionate about many things. However, may we remember, the enemy is not sitting out there in the pew. He is the prince and the power of the air. Let’s feed sheep, not beat sheep.

Have a great day!

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How Rx Dependent Is Our Culture?

How psychologically dependent are we as a people when it comes to prescription drugs? Several years ago, a pharmacist friend expressed his observation after many years of filling prescriptions. It was and is his conviction we are psychologically Rx dependent.

We don’t need to take a survey to test his premise. We only need to ask ourselves and consider our own thoughts on the matter. Imagine this scenario:

  • We are sick or just not feeling 100%
  • We make an appointment with our doctor
  • We get dressed and go to the doctor
  • We arrive and pay a copay
  • We wait 45 minutes to an hour in the waiting room
  • They finally call us back
  • The nurse weighs us and takes our vitals
  • She asks us why we are there
  • She jots down a few notes and leaves the room promising “The doctor will see you in a few minutes.”
  • We wait for another period of time (maybe as much as 30 minutes)
  • The doctor comes in, examines us, and in a few minutes tells us what we need to do to feel better

The premise of my pharmacist friend is – if we leave the doctor’s office without a prescription in hand, we feel like we have wasted our time and our money. If the doctor prescribes weight loss, multivitamins, exercise, and a better eating plan, what is our psychological response. “I did not need to go to the doctor to hear all that. I already knew that. I did not need to pay a copay for a doctor to tell me to eat better, lose weight, and take care of myself.”

The problem: We want a prescription. We want the doctor to give us that little slip of paper we cannot read, so we can take it to a pharmacist we may not know, and take a drug with possible side effects, with the confidence that drug will make us better. Do we ever influence the doctor to give us a medication? Do we ever ask him or her “What can I take for this?” Only you can answer these questions.

If this is not you, great! However, in my conversations with people, it seems most people believe we are over-medicated as a nation. How are all these chemicals interacting with each other inside our bodies? Does over-medication have an impact on our brain or other parts of our body? Could this have anything to do with the steady increase in the  numbers of people developing Alzheimer’s disease? Are we psychologically dependent on prescription drugs? These are important questions.

Disclaimer: Allow me to close by saying, those of you who know me well know how I appreciate, love, and pray for the medical community; these professionals who have dedicated their lives to care for our physical bodies. I am not talking about medications our bodies need because of surgery, physical trauma, or a breakdown in the system somewhere. I am talking about us; our psychological dependence on prescription drugs. Could this be the leading cause of our being over medicated as a nation?

Have great day!

The Prevention Component of The DADS Project

The #1 goal of The DADS Project is prevention of Alzheimer’s disease. This dovetails nicely with the mission and purpose of Foundations for Life. That being – getting the Word into people and people into the Word. Think of The DADS Project as 100 days of consistent discipleship as you saturate your mind each day with the Word of God in a guided approach. The earlier the better is a great way to think about your involvement in The DADS Project.

Click one of the links below for information about bringing The Project to your location. During the two hour workshop, you will learn all about the saturation / prevention element of The DADS Project.

 Pastor, staff, team or organizational leader? Click here

 Interested in participating in a workshop? Click here

Spring Forward

One more time tomorrow, I’ll be preaching at Cedar View Baptist in Olive Branch.

  • In the morning, I’ll be preaching on The Believer’s Rebound drawn from one of the most important passages of Scripture; a passage vital to our walk with our Lord.
  • In the evening, I’ll be preaching on Recapturing the Sound Mind.
    If you are in town and available, I would love to see you.

Whether you worship with us or not, remember to Spring forward with your clocks.

Take care