Tales from the Bible Belt

My dear coworker just took up, collectively, about an hour of our all day in-service meeting, preaching the gospel. We were talking about ‘crucial conversations’, how to communicate effectively. One of the things we were talking about was checking our own motives and feelings before opening dialogue. One of the speakers referred to it as changing our heart.

And coworker was off.

“But no one can change their own heart. Only God can change a heart, so it’s impossible to do apart from Him.”

And he continued in that vein for twenty minutes that time. That was the first time. The speakers were very polite and tried to ease him back on topic but he kept pulling out Bible verses to support this claims. Other coworkers were getting angry but were trying not to say anything. Finally, one of the speakers took back over and we went on.

Until one of them talked about presenting the facts in a diplomatic way. Coworker said, “We should preach the truth in love, and if that’s not well received, we need to continue preaching it until the person listens.”

Of course that’s not at all what the speakers were saying, and in fact it was opposite of what they were teaching. He continued, they tried to bring him back to topic. Probably about fifteen minutes lost that time.

Then we broke for lunch. He got into a conversation with another staff member (who, frankly likes to work coworker up just for the fun of it and then sit back and watch). Coworker refused to leave the room where he was eating lunch, even though the meeting started again. We waited on him a full ten minutes.

Then he got into another bible discussion somewhere in that next session but truthfully, I’d stopped listening by to anything he said by then and couldn’t tell you what it was about or how long it was.

Is it bad that I’m done with him and the students haven’t even started the school year yet? Can you be burned out before you even start?






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