Strengthening Character

All the permanent fruits and progress that result from our leadership are based on strong character.
—Maxie Dunnam

For several years our church has debated whether people should applaud after special music, especially in the 11:00 A.M. service. Ata board meeting, someone caught me off guard by raising that issue out of nowhere.

For some reason it struck a nerve, and when I responded, my voice quivered and my blood pressure rose. "For anybody to criticize people who are responding to their feelings in worship," I snapped, "is as insensitive as anything I know."

Everyone in the room was taken back by my obvious anger. I rarely lose control of my emotions.

Eventually I took the edge off the situation by stumbling into a humorous story: "Can Christians dance?" a man asked a preacher. "Some can," the preacher replied, "and some can't."

I finally said, "If people want to applaud, I think we're going to just have to accept that."

Emotional outbursts at a board meeting can be the beginning of the end ...

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