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The Thursday (of a pastoring, preaching week) chapter in Frank Honeycutt’s Sunday Comes Every Week is about Naming.
Every pastor would like to do this, or at least many pastors would like to:
Pastors - Scene - Darkly - Sunday - Names
I suspect most pastors love this scene and daydream darkly of the Sunday where names of the uncommitted are revealed during the announcement period and slack stewardship is publicly exposed from the pulpit for all to discover. I have a friend who recalls a worship service from his childhood where the priest intoned, “Now take the William Murphy family, for instance. They take in eighty grand annually and give a measly forty dollars a year to the church!” That, of course, was the last the congregation ever saw of the Murphy family.
But any pastor who does not know of spiritual abuse has more to learn:
Manipulation - People - Pastors - Suspicion - Minds
There’s much more childhood religious manipulation in people we encounter than pastors often realize. We sometimes miss the unspoken suspicion in the minds of many people who may assume that all clergy are out to instill guilt and kidnap minds. Our recognition of and response to such early coercion in a person’s life may be the most important things we do to help him or her revisit any possibility of God or church.
There is indeed truthful honesty about the theological depth expected by Jesus; there’s no getting around that. But the man twists the arm of no one who opts out entirely from his kingdom enterprise. When a preacher truly believes thisthat the aim of preaching is not to raise money, cheerlead for a pet project, increase Sunday-morning attendance, or manipulate...
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