[By Ryan Hale]
I'll admit it right now; the meanest people I've ever met in my life are Christians. And those people will manipulate everything and everyone to get some power in the church because it gives them an avenue of legitimacy to just run over people. Stories are legion of deacons who are almost the Anti-Christ in charcter and action. I remember one lady in particular . . . never mind.
All of those things wound people. It is real. It hurts. And it is killing churches because they are losing numbers every day.
The answer is that the church needs to seriously evaluate itself. It means taking a long, hard look at what it is, why it is, how it got there, and where it wants to go. It means detoxifying itself -- a very painful process. It means talking to the community, former members, people who dislike the church and even people who simply "heard rumors" and then face up to its image and history. For many churches, it will mean public apologies and private weeping over past sins.
[You can read his entire blog at http://www.thatbaptistaintright.blogspot.com/.]