ABC News featured an interesting story about women bullies in the workplace. Men, we are told, target both sexes equally when bullying. Women tend to go after other women.
Why? "It is the perfection combined with the urgency that creates a lethal combination," said one participant in a counseling round-table for workplace aggression. This observation mirrors research that Sue and I uncovered for our latest book. The "urgency" refers to the limited positions of authority available to women in corporate America. With so few openings (right or wrong, that's the way it is), competition among women can get fierce. In many cases, one woman is "competing" against another woman who has no aspirations for higher office--but that doesn't seem to matter.
The church is not immune to such infighting. Women usually find indirect means to undermine, hurt, and attack other women. This style protects us, we think, from the more unpleasant aspects of direct confrontation. And yet the Bible exhorts everyone to address personal conflict one-on-one, face-to-face, directly and with humility (see Matthew 18). If that doesn't work, we can take a witness, and so forth. Even this article about workplace conflict follows the biblical pattern: be direct, establish a paper trail, bring a witness...
The difference is that in most cases such workplace conflict--secular and ministry--occurs out of sinful motives. "I'm going to win." "She was wrong!" Christians are called to a higher standard.
In about two weeks, I'll be participating in a ministry leadership conference in Orlando, FL. The theme of this Synergy conference is "Recovering the Blessed Alliance" -- discussing the biblical truth that men and women need each other in every facet of life. Any guesses as to what this conference has to do with the current financial crisis? Synergy founder Carolyn Custis James noted the connection between the two seemingly unrelated events in this message to current registrants. Take a look.
The Dallas Seminary family lost a beloved professor, a father figure to many, last week. Harold Hoehner chaired the New Testament department and Ph.D. program for many his 42 years of service at DTS. His love for God's Word and dedication to careful study and scholarship influenced hundreds of future pastors and professors. His Aggie jokes and love for Mac computers made us all laugh. His care for individual students is as much a part of his legacy as is his masterful commentary on Ephesians.
For a biography/obituary and details on his memorial service later this week, click here. To read tributes from former students, click here.
My middle child, born with a gleam in his eye, a joie de vivre, can I even call it 'mischief'? Naming him after his father, both of them second sons, proved amazingly appropriate according to his grandmother. A chip off the old block in more than appearance. He's a vision of extremes. The most adventurous, fearless, energetic and daring of his siblings, voted most likely to break a bone first. Yet he alone still finds me each morning to cuddle in my lap, with lots of sugar and nuzzles. I treasure those moments more each day as I see Kindergarten looming. Where there is Jack, there is Lovey. Jack still carries his beloved lamb around like a best friend. Lovey has been victimized several times by Jack's exuberance. He's lost one ear, his head sewn up with red stitches as a reminder of what slinging Lovey around like cowboy roping a calf can do to a poor stuffed lamb. His neck sports blue stitches, an emergency surgery to put him back together. Lovey is well loved. Jack recently announced that he would be bringing Lovey to Kindergarten with him, and that he would put him in the cubby so his classmates wouldn't hurt him. But he could bring him out at naptime....Hmmm, that's up for discussion.
So happy fifth birthday to our dear Jack, who keeps us laughing, smiling, and shaking our heads. With you, son, our days are full and the future bright.
Mark your calendars, moms whose kids are anywhere from infant to tween. Sweet Repeats, the consignment sale sponsored by two MOPS groups in McKinney, is coming March 28. Held at Trinity Presbyterian in McKinney (Virginia Pkwy), this clothing, toy, and baby equipment sale will serve your pocketbook well. Plan to show up early!
If you would like to sell your own items at the sale, sign up at the website. Volunteers are welcome (of course!). See the website for that information as well. One major perk for volunteers is the pre-sale...Friday night the sale opens ONLY to volunteers, so this is a fantastic opportunity to find the best items for your kids.
Either way, be sure to mark your calendars: March 28!