Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Patient or Passive?

Something I have been wrestling with recently has been the difference between being patient and being passive. I am not by an extremely patient person (insert your own sarcastic comment here). Don't misunderstand I am not a finger-tapping, loud sighing, pacing back and forth type of person (do not insert any comment here). But I am also not a "whenever you get around to it" type of person either. If I have made a decision, or a request, I really don't want to wait too long for the action to begin. This trait sometimes makes for frustration given my position as a pastor. By nature it seems churches are not quick reacting or moving organizations. I'm just sayin'.

As much as I desire to be a little more patient at times (notice I said a little more patient maybe that reveals more than I realized) I abhor (wow, I impressed myself with that word) passivity. I have no desire to be more passive, nor am I seeking any more passive people to come alongside me.

My struggle is in trying to determine the proper balance of being more patient (at least a little) when I should be and making sure I don't just become passive and excuse it as being patient.

So how do I distinguish between patience and passivity?


At 8:25 AM, Blogger Tim Morris said...

This is kind if interesting.
If it is staff you are waiting on to follow up a directive, passive will never get anything done.
If it is church members their slow reaction my indicate other things. Maybe they aren't as interested as you thought in the project or as volunteers they put your list to a second or third place in their list of to do items.
I struggle with mixing my impatience with anger.
I think on some things I have learned to be more passive with issues I can't control, that is SOME things.
I am a very selfish impatient person. I only am bugged when my progress or project is slowed down.
In churches the wheels of change don't move slowly, they stop and back up every few miles to make sure they didn't take a wrong road. And when brought to a fork in the road, the church may sit and look at it for years before moving forward.
So how do you distinguish between patience and passivity? There is less frustration with passive? You relinquish control?
Patience come when we are moving forward but not discouraged by the pace (as long as there is forward motion.)
I don't know, but it is a good question.
If you ask others about me you would find I have no patience at all and I am more tolerant than passive. I accept others but not because I don't care, and I fight for change.


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