How Can Your Core Values
Destroy Your Ministry?

If your core values are the deepest and finest things about you...how can they harm you...and others...and even destroy your ministry?

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To answer that question you need to know...

  • ...the nature of such values

  • ...how they are different from other values

  • ...how you can express them in destructive ways

On this site we define important ideas by using Aristotle's quote about the necessity of defining everything so we can communicate about it.

So what is a value?


Any value is...

a strong desire...

either to keep something we cherish...

or to get something we yearn for


So...values are based in emotions...such as desire..cherishing...yearning.


It's that simple.

So let's contrast something like professional values and personal values with core values.

In our set of personal values...we may want to keep our health...so we exercise. Or we may want to get better health...so we cut sugar from our diet.

On the other hand...our professional values...what we want to get or keep...reflect how we want to make our contribution and be remembered.

For example an actress may want to...get...an important part to...keep...her name in lights and also make a contribution to dramatic art...for which she will be remembered. Think of Vivien Leigh in "Gone With The Wind"...an unforgettable classic.

So the interplay between getting and keeping something is clear.

Except there is an important difference when it comes to deeply rooted unconscious values

What's the difference?

The difference is critical and explains how your fundamental values can undermine a ministry...by creating psychological disorders.

Hard to believe...but here's how it's done.

Personal and professional values are conscious.

Core Values are unconscious!!

The actress knows up front she wants that important role. And she devises conscious strategies and takes calculated action to achieve what she wants to keep or get...her value.

And core values...are different because they operate unconsciously.

Most people have to discover them within themselves...which is possible.

You can see that that they are unconscious when people are struggling in their lives. Ask them "What is it that you really want...what's missing that would set your life aglow?"

Most of the time they'll give you a conscious personal or professional value ("I want to lose weight for my wedding day"..."I want a better job").

Also people who do 'strange' or 'dumb' things are often confusing to themselves and to other people. Ask them why they do those things and they'll say "I don't know what makes me do that."

Nine out of ten times...there is an unconscious basic value trying to express itself...with an incongruent strategy. And it is because your deepest values are unconscious they can become connected to conscious behaviors and strategies that are contradictory.


Here's an example of a deep core value being implemented by an unethical strategy...

The desire to heal leads to sexual battery

A religious sister developed a ministry to heal sexually abused women of the effects of the abuse.

Her strategy...to fulfill her deep desire to heal others...

was to hold the women in her arms and caress them intimately.

That's an example of a noble fundamental value violating boundaries...with sexual battery as the means to fulfill it.

Her ministry was destroyed.


With conscious values...we can constantly check and see if our actions are leading us to fulfillment or not.

The unconscious mind doesn't know a lot about what effect you're having on the outside world. So...

With unconscious values...we lose the ability to check to see if our actions are congruent with how we're actually behaving. The only way to do that is to make them conscious.

For examples of two ministers who have the same fundamental value...where one is successful and one is not...you can go from this core values page to the what are values page.

Or you can...



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