Monday 25 April 2011

Global MC—Pearl Five

Unmasking Dysfunction

Read it. Discuss it. Apply it.

We are exploring member care by using brief quotes from the book, Global Member Care: The Pearls and Perils of Good Practice (published February 2011). Drawing on the metaphor from Rev. 21:21, each quote is like a huge pearl--a pearl gateway--that allows us to enter more fully into the global field of member care. The next four entries are from Part Two in the book, “Promoting Health in Mission/Aid.”

 Pearl Five
“Most of us have been part of both healthy and dysfunctional work settings. The healthy ones are personally rewarding and we feel we are contributing and growing, and challenged and respected. The dysfunctional ones on the other hand drain us, stealing our time, focus, effectiveness, and even our emotional and physical health...Dysfunction disables our people and purposes, but most importantly from a Christian viewpoint, it dishonors God (Rom. 2:21-24).” (page 88)

“The problem is further complicated when there is not proper accountability in place, or when there is not enough relational history with a person or an institution to really confront it and require verifiable changes. Again I want to be clear that I am not talking about how to handle situations where folks simply differ or where both the normalcy of conflict and the need to work it through in helpful ways are understood. Rather I am referring to instances where there is significant personal and organizational dysfunction. So in other words organizations and people, whether they are aware of it or not, and whether they are willing to admit it or not, are having an ongoing “toxic” influence on people. And as a result, unless we have the necessary life skills, training, and profes¬sional support (which would include being well-versed in the behavioral science areas of systems, recovery, and clinical disorders; and well-grounded in mediation practices and in the breadth of Christian scripture for dealing with conflict and dysfunction) we can end up being “wise as doves” as we interact with others who may be “innocent as serpents.” Truth without grace may be brutal, but grace without truth can be lethal.” (page 92,93)

Reflection and Discussion
**Recall one aspect of your life/work that relates to the quote above.

**Have a go at connecting the above quote with a current international area that interests/concerns you.

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