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Performance (3 of 4)

Mike Connell

Page 6 of 10
We had a standard policy: never talk to the mum, always talk to the dad first of all. He'll come up more honest and up front you know? [Laughs] If you want to know how it really is ask the mum. Okay, a person who's got performance orientation's afraid to try new things because they might fail. So you understand if your identity is tied to your performance, what's going to happen if you try something new? Yeah God, what if I fail? This is too much to think of. I can't possibly stand that - so there's a fear of failure. Another thing is constant fear of failure and what people think, so a person who's got performance orientation is always worried about what someone else is thinking. Well you know what, let me just tell you a little truth. People are going to think what they think no matter what happens. Who cares what they think? You see, the reason you're afraid of what people think is because you really want their approval because your identity's not secure in what God says about you, His thoughts about you. Are you getting the idea?

Okay then, so here's another thing about people who are performance oriented like this. They need to know the rules beforehand because they have to be in control, so whenever they come into something they've got to know exactly what's expected, [exactly what to think. 00.24.31] But actually the real thing underneath it is I'm terrified I'll make a mistake. I can't make a mistake. I CAN'T MAKE A MISTAKE! Tell me what the rules are! So they live their life by rules instead of spontaneous flow. Horrible way to live your life, by rules. Oh, you live in fear all the time you're going to break the rules, and of course - okay, so they need to know the rules; can't be spontaneous because they have to be correct. If you're living all your life and you have to be correct, you can't be spontaneous because you're always trying to do the right thing. What's the right thing? I don't know. Well look around, find out what seems to be the right thing around here. [Laughter]

You understand? And you get everyone doing that, you have a whole church culture where everyone's looking to do the right thing - whatever the right thing is. God doesn't call us that way, He calls us to do things that bring life and it doesn't matter whether you think it's right or not. Its irrelevant see, so you can't be spontaneous if you're controlled and correct. Of course you know, a person who's like that, they'll give out their affection and praise in a very measured amount: I'll give it if you deserve it. You don't deserve it, so I'll withhold it. You understand that, because that's been their experience; I'm loved if I perform. If I don't perform I'm not loved, so that's how I dish things out to the world. But you know that's not the biblical perspective. God is a God of love, I'm made in His image, I'm a loving person. I love because I love, not because you deserve it.

You get this in the church [unclear 00.25.52] huge issues. A lot of people have this kind of thing going on in their life, and of course if you don't perform right they give you the cold shoulder; you don't meet what I want. So you get the silent treatment, the cold shoulder. In a marriage they withhold sex until you do what I want you to do. That makes a person a prostitute because I'll give you sex if you do what I want you to do. That's humiliating and demeaning to the person who operates that way, and they feel defiled by it. This is a strong culture, it's a strong thing in the culture and of course when it gets into church you have a huge issue when it gets into church. Of course you've got to understand this when you're working with children. You know when you work with children, I've been into schools and it was so - religious schools - so tight I thought I could never send my kids there.

I'd rather they went to a secular school than be exposed to this thing, because it'll destroy them. It'll destroy their soul, but you see because a religious spirit is the worst kind. So a religious spirit is something which is trying to please God, but see true Christianity, God has already done the thing that pleased and we've just got to trust it so now we're free to be ourselves. So we're FREE! Ha ha! Ooh, [unclear 00.27.09]. Thank God I don't have to perform, you know? Like I've been living out of something someone else did for me, not my own performance, and so when you've got that kind of environment - of course you've got to understand in a home, in a home one of the things that builds a great home is when you have a lot of laughter together because it's hard to be controlled and laugh at the same time. [Laughter, applause]