In Crowd, Out Crowd

In Crowd, Out Crowd -  Steve Wickham

WHAT 'IN CROWD' are you in? Everyone it seems is part of one in-crowd or other, and some assimilate to more than one. It's the phenomenon of fellowship; it's the theory of association; it's the practice of membership. What "club" do you belong to? What defines you? What defines me? I'm Christian... I'm a family person... I'm part of the OSH fraternity... I'm a learner... these things categorize me, among other things.
Participating in a behavioral safety workshop recently I found it fascinating observing the body language of 'converts' trying to convert the unconverted-to see the scepticism of the unconverted with the 'we're doing it anyway' mindset, and to then see the counter view scepticism of the converted when the unconverted talked... it seemed to me that there was little trust between the groups when on that particular subject, but what existed was a mutual respect of the counter position-an openness to dialog. And this lasts so long as there is hope of a conversion, and realistically, there is always hope of that, as the converted never really lose hope of converting the yet-to-be-converted.
It sort of reminds me of the Christian 'church-going' faith. When there is the hint that people are investigating faith we're very encouraging and we never lose hope they might receive the Lord.
But it does make me wonder a little of our very human propensity to massage and manipulate situations so people can be most encouraged to assimilate. It's the type of situation where a person gets carried away with the awe of Christ and the euphoria that takes place, then years later they actually find out what the cost of discipleship is. Is it a trick?
Die hard Christians might say, 'Who are you to question what the Lord is doing in the hearts of the yet-to-be-converted'? That is a reasonable question. But that is not the question I am asking-I'm simply calling people of all persuasions, whether that be behavioral safety gurus or evangelists, to act with integrity and not get in the way of the natural process. People must make their own decisions.
There ought to be no coercion. When we coerce and it isn't based in truth we stand to upset and hurt people through that sort of deception.
How do we stack up with the 'in crowd-out crowd' thing? Are we prejudiced against a type of person or group of people purely because they're at odds with our belief system? We may not behave in ways that reinforce this, but our hearts often transmit more than we would like-we can't hide what we really feel.
Is there a cost that someone or a group bears based on our prejudices? Are we part of an 'in crowd' that only completely accepts people when they've conformed to our systems of thinking. I believe this is not how Jesus lived. I believe people followed him because he oozed compassion. He loved unconditionally-even his enemies-at all times.
Now, he is Integrity. He calls me to the very same integrity.
Steve Wickham is a safety and health professional (BSc) and a qualified Christian minister (GradDipDiv). His passion in vocation is facilitation and coaching; encouraging people to reach their potential. Steve's interest in psychology is matched by years of experience in the psychology of safety in workplaces. Steve's key passion is work / life balance and re-creating value for living. An advocate for a fair and just life, Steve implements wisdom strategies to his life through a passion for Proverbial wisdom. His highest goal is doing God's will, in enhancing his life, and the lives of others. Article Source:  Article Source: