Grow bitter or Grow better?

Don Miller’s blog post about cynicism has gotten me thinking. . . which is never a good thing.

Can cynics be great leaders?


I often have trouble articulating my thoughts the way that I want to (which is why I almost always avoid “serious” blog posts at all costs), but here’s my attempt at trying. . . in a public space.  Don’t judge me.

Let it be known that I am probably one of the biggest (if not the biggest) cynics I know.

I remember watching an episode of One Punk Under God where Jay Bakker shared about growing up in the midst of scandal (Jim & Tammy Faye Bakker), gossip, betrayal, and false leaders – all of which caused him to become a cynic.

And I thought. . . is that me?


I also grew up in “the church.”  My dad has been a pastor for as long as I can remember.  I was never accustomed to taking family trips (as such things were a luxury), but I do remember one camping trip we took with a group of other pastors and their kids.  We sat around, a group of 2nd-generation Korean PKs (Pastor’s Kids), and took turns complaining about our dads, church, ministry, hypocrisy, etc.  In a way, it was a cathartic experience.  There were others like me. I am always amazed when I meet other PKs who have actually had a good church experience.  Are you out there?

So I started making a list of reasons why I am cynical:

  1. If I don’t (or in the very least, pretend not to) care, I won’t ever feel hurt or disappointed – i.e. fear of disappointment
  2. It’s hard for me to believe that people can change. . . for REAL.
  3. It’s hard for me to give people the benefit of the doubt.  My gut reaction is to look for flaws or impurities.
  4. I project my own insecurities on others.  If I’m critical of myself in a certain area, I’ll tend to criticize others in that SAME AREA.

To sum it up, I would say that my past pains/hurts are what make me cynical, particularly those dealing with people in the church.

Sandy Brownlee, a commenter on the blog post said –

“I’ve always thought cynics are wounded idealists. Rather than letting our hurt show or cutting off an ear like Van Gogh, we hide.”

WOUNDED IDEALISTS

I’ll be thinking about that one for awhile.

Advertisements

2 thoughts on “Grow bitter or Grow better?

  1. some great things you’re thinking about, amy. i love what Conan O’brien said on the topic– among other things saying that cynicism gets us nowhere. I agree with him. i think we become cynical when we are hurt…over and over again. we can be a hurt person that hurts people or… we can be wounded healers.

  2. amy, admitting it is step one. thank you for your bravery. hi, my name is kate and i am a recovering cynic too. 😉 haha i love your serious and funny posts!!!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s