This church is crazy with control.

Two weeks ago, I received an email from a man at church that he and his family were leaving.

TD is a man who likes to putter around the church fixing stuff.  He was a carpenter and general handyman by trade and does it well.  He has an eye that sees whatever is amiss and he generally pulls the parts to fix them out of some box he has at home.  When his magic box doesn’t have what he needs, he picks it up and turns in the receipt to the church, as he has been told to do.

An elder saw him changing the ballast in a light down stairs in a dark hallway.  The elder told him that without elder approval, he was not able to spend more than $20.  TD said, “Then I will pay for this out of my pocket because there needs to be light in this hallway.”  The elder told him not to do that.

I guess we prefer darkness.

T on our staff talked TD out of leaving and talked to the elders about it.  They passed the buck to the guy in charge of house and grounds (even though they had been the ones to impose the arbitrary $20 rule.)

The man in charge of house and grounds, MM, is a 50% attender and is pretty disengaged with building maintenance (hence all the need for TD to putter around.)   Today I received an email that MM had spoken to TD to chastise him for changing out lightbulbs and to say, “We are not reimbursing you for the gas you used in your pressure washer to wash the crud off the sidewalks and building.”

I don’t get it.  Why do we have to squabble over who controls things all the way down to lightbulbs?

TD is leaving.  How can I blame him?

About shepherd

I am a pastor at a local church.
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6 Responses to Control

  1. Eklunds says:

    I think you need to form a committee to make sure nobody is changing empty toilet paper rolls without permission. And, then you need an elder in charge to make sure no renegades change the rolls without permission. The elder should also dictate what type of TP to purchase, where to purchase it and how often it needs to be purchased.

    Seriously, this is why people don’t like Christians and have no interest in hearing about Christ. They see this type of insanity and want no part of it. I don’t blame them.

  2. sjb says:

    A high need for control is often a symptom of an anxious or scared personality. By controlling everything possible, the individual feels less anxious.

    Sounds like your board is full of anxious people.

  3. vernon says:

    don’t forget the age old arguement of over or under. Td needs to tell the elders exactly why he is leaving. Reminds me of the old joke(?) punchline where jesus tells the little boy “it’s ok, they won’t let me in either”

  4. vernon says:

    don’t hate me because I did not Capitalize Jesus or the Me pronoun referring to Him it was an accident! I’m sorry!

  5. Blossoms says:

    No! Say it isn’t happening?! That is wrong, so very, very wrong. What happened to encouraging acts of service?? The elders need a serious wake up call. TD NEEDS to talk to them.

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