Feb 262013 4 Responses

Never Share Truth from the Perspective of a Pharmacist

A pharmacist works from a raised platform because of tradition. Being two feet higher than everyone else gives the pharmacist a better vantage point of the store and keeps potential drug thieves from seeing her inventory.

Two-feet above others might be the perfect perspective from which one dispenses drugs, but it’s not the proper perspective from which one should dispense truth.

Truth should never be proclaimed downward. It should not be presented from a “I have this figured out and you don’t” perspective. Truth is not something possessed by one and forced upon another. While it is fun to rain truth down on others, it is never enjoyable to have it rained down on us. Truth proclaimed downward is rarely received well. It feels too preachy, too judgmental, too void of relationship for it to be life changing.

Truth can be proclaimed upward. Telling truth to power is a necessary aspect of life. We can plead with those above us to see the truth. We can hope they will have the humility to accept truth from someone below them, yet truth proclaimed upward is most often ignored.

Truth is best proclaimed eye to eye. It’s best shared among equals. Truth is something which is sought, discovered, and given. It’s transferred between equals. It changes lives as we stand on common ground.

The problem with truth is we believe it gives us power. We think it raises us above others so even when we desire to share it, we dispense it downward from a position of strength.

  • How many parents speak of truth as something they have and their teenagers don’t?
  • How many preachers speak of truth as something they possess and their congregations lack?
  • How many husbands/wives speak of truth as something their spouse should be embarrassed he/she doesn’t know.

It is fun to proclaim truth downward, but it is never useful. And it is never truthful.

Truth is something to which we should all be in submission. It’s the shared human perspective—feeble humanity bowing to the great realities of this world; feeble humanity bowing to God.

When we proclaim truth downward, we are presenting ourselves as something we are not—the creators of truth. Truth is not something we create. It is something we discover. It is something revealed to us.

Having been given truth, we give truth to others, our peers. No matter the person with whom I am sharing truth, they are my peer. My child, my parent, my friend–we are all peers in submission to truth.

When truth is shared downward it is often rejected.

When truth is shared upward, it is often ignored.

When truth is shared eye to eye, it is often accepted.

From what perspective do you share truth:

  • As a parent?
  • As a boss?
  • As a pastor?
  • As a spouse?

If the truth you share is repeatedly rejected, it could be your perspective is wrong. Look to the pharmacist for drugs, but do not look to her as a model for sharing truth.

4 Responses to Never Share Truth from the Perspective of a Pharmacist
  1. Denny Neff Reply

    Well Pastor, you nailed me again in the third paragraph and continued to dance all over my toes throughout the remainder of this blog and I want to say thank you for that. Between what Shelton shared on Sunday and your writing this morning, I think God is really wanting me to take note of my behavior.

    You are so right on when you write of speaking the truth downward and upward as I have done so both ways and in almost every occasion it has met with the same reaction.

    I know when someone cares enough about me to sit down with me one on one and talk to me about the truth, I have received it with gratitude and love. I also think for the most part that which God has for us to share He has designed for us to do so through a relationship be that one on one or in the context of community.

    Again I want to say thank you for sharing that which is so obviously God’s word for me and people like me. I pray you will continue to love people enough to give of yourself in such a manner as this. I know every time you teach, preach or write, I leave encouraged, wiser and most blessed.

  2. Ada Floyd Reply

    This was very timely as I will be in a position of having to share “truth” as it was given to me by a client to another employee – who is in a position over me. And yet, as the advocate for the client, it is necessary. And I was preparing mentally for battle, rather than for a conversation. Which is obviously not the right approach. So now I will humbly, and gratefully, go to God with this and try to better prepare to gently share the truth to hopefully be heard and remedy the situation.

    KT – thank you for taking the time to do this. I try to stay caught up, but I trust I will see the exact posts I need. 🙂 always thought provoking.

    • Kevin Reply

      I think you hear me enough. No pressure to keep up.

  3. […] In some cases, this is the relationship that has to exist. When mental illness is present, a spouse ... kevinathompson.com/think-spouse-cant-handle

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