I will now conclude with five through ten of the character flaws that Dr. Tartaglia has recorded in his book, Flawless! The Ten Most Common Character Flaws and What You Can Do About Them.
“A Character with Flaws” (conclusion)
(5) “Intolerance” stinks. An attitude of superiority and disdain pervades the air when this flaw is present. You can smell it. This attitude of rejection and intolerance is the basis of bias and prejudice according to Dr. Tartaglia. Sometimes it is blatant, like racial prejudice or nationalism. Sometimes it is very subtle and presents itself as pity for the poor unfortunates who aren’t as liberated, or enlightened, as we are. Nevertheless, it is still intolerance. This flaw of character could be eliminated if we’d stress personal responsibility, and the value and sacredness of human life in our homes and schools. Seems we go to great lengths to teach kids the skills that they will need to excel in a career, but we don’t take the time to teach them respect for one another. No matter what your color, creed, or culture is your life is worthy of my respect.
(6) The “poor me” (martyr syndrome) character is found in people who need to be victimized. Don’t get me wrong. There are a number of victims out there who have truly suffered and don’t want to be victimized any more; however, I know some people, as you probably do also, who use their victimization in a way that disrupts relationships and creates chaos. These people embellish their victimization and set themselves up as victims by pity parties to make others feel sorry for them. Actually their status as the perpetual victim becomes their strength. The louder they cry, the more attention they get. You know the type. These self-inflicted martyrs suffer pain so that someone will look at them and think they’re a saint for enduring such pain and affliction.
(7) “Self-regard run riot” is listed as number seven. It was Charles H. Parkhurst who said, “The man who lives by himself and for himself is likely to be corrupted by the company he keeps.” The “self-regard run riot” flaw is easily identified. It’s hard to hide it when someone is self-absorbed. They give themselves away easily when every sentence out of their mouth begins with, “I.” You don’t have to regard them. They regard themselves, constantly.
(8) The “excuse for everything” rounds off at number eight. Try to fail the test that I’m going to give you now. If you fail it, that’s good. It shows that you’re pretty objective and can move forward without excuses. Here are the questions to your test: Do you hide your inadequacy with pomposity and like it? Do you love your own excuses because you invented them? Do you quit before you have given it your all? Do you believe that you were born to the wrong race, parents, or society? Do you believe that you can’t because you weren’t raised properly? Do you refuse to look and develop your potential? If you answered “No” to these questions, you don’t need to know anything about the “excuse for everything” character flaw. Congratulations! However if you answered “Yes” to these questions, you need to buy Dr. Tartaglia’s book. You’ve got a lot of work to do.
(9) Number nine is “hypercritical fault finders.” Being cynical, pessimistic, or rejecting is a sign of this character flaw. Often the surest sign that a person has this flaw is being oversensitive to criticism. This flaw causes people to be so nasty that their criticism is biting or so oversensitive that they feel that the flaw has bitten them. It was Henry David Thoreau who said, “The fault finder will find faults even in paradise.” There is pride in pointing out what is wrong. The hypercritics have an unwritten code that solutions are not necessary, only identification of problems is. Do you know one of these people? I hope not because they can make your life miserable.
Faith Fellowship Church…POBox 1586…Broken Arrow, OK 74013…918-451-0270…Pastor Terry Dashner
(10) Number ten is “chronic dishonesty.” Do you lie when it would be simpler to tell the truth? Do you like to see how much you can get away with? Do you believe in the letter of the law rather than the intent? Do you justify your dishonesty? Do you tell people you don’t care when you really do? Do you preach morality to others and behave immorally yourself? Do you pretend humility because you think you are better than everyone else is? Do you need to set up contracts to get you to do what you promised? Do you lie so much that you have trouble believing other people? Do you enjoy conning people? You did so well on the other test that I thought I would give you another. Hopefully, you can answer “No” to these questions. Don’t think for one moment that this character flaw is rampant in unbelievers only. It’s not. In twenty plus years of church ministry I’ve had to dismiss staff members from time to time because of this flaw that motivated their actions. It’s a shame that some Christians have “chronic dishonesty” as part of their character. But, unfortunately some do. Honesty is still the best policy for all especially Christians.
In closing this devotion let me encourage you. It’s easy to read these ten flaws and relate them to somebody we know, but we must not refuse to judge our own hearts in light of these. After all, strength of character is being able to rightfully assess one’s own self and make the appropriate changes. God gives us grace to be holy as He is Holy. God requires much from His people in regards to ethics. He wants us to treat others like we want ourselves to be treated by others. It’s as simple as that. A solid character is worth more than gold.
Keep the faith. Jesus is the soon coming King of Kings and Lord of Lords. How will He find you when He comes?