In yesterday’s mail I got a copy of Super Lawyers, Louisiana Edition. Since I have been practicing law in Louisiana for 35 years I am familiar with many of the lawyers featured in the magazine. Some are pretty good lawyers. Some not so much. None are “super.”
SuperLawyers.com puts out the advertising packed magazine. As the Journal of the American Bar Association has reported, ads in Super Lawyers can cost super bucks. Super Lawyers puts out a promotion kit for their “Super” lawyers advising how to make the most out of their “Super Lawyer” status. The kit warns the “Super” lawyers to be careful with words:
HOW TO TALK ABOUT SUPER LAWYERS: OKAY TO SAY: She was included in this year’s Florida Super Lawyers list. NOT OKAY TO SAY: She’s a Super Lawyer. OKAY TO SAY: Super Lawyers selected three people from this firm. NOT OKAY TO SAY: This firm has a lot of Super Lawyers. OKAY TO SAY: Sally was selected to the 2017 Wisconsin Super Lawyers list. No more than five percent of the lawyers in the state were selected. NOT OKAY TO SAY: Sally was recognized by Super Lawyers, which means she is in the top five percent of lawyers in the state.
In other words, only five percent of lawyers in a state are “selected to be “Super.” They are just not necessarily the best or top five percent. It’s like the “Best” lawyers in Acadiana. They are the ones who have managed to get the most votes in a “news” paper in which they heavily advertise. Bar associations are starting to take a look at claims of superiority.
The real problem is that we just have too many lawyers. Competition for law “dollars” is fierce. Look at the billboards and the television ads, not that you can avoid looking. Sadly, for many, the legal profession is no longer about using the law to solve problems, but about using the law to make money.
It’s not just lawyers, doctors, and dentists and a lot of other professionals are now advertising. There just too many of those people as well. There will never be enough good lawyers, doctors and dentists. There just may be too many “super” ones.
Perhaps the saddest thing is that there are now too many preachers and pastors. There is a fight for customers in that “business” as well. Jesus told us to “make disciples” and not “build congregations.” There is a difference. These days there are shrinking numbers who are interested in being part of a church. There is a fight for those people. It’s why we have bigger and prettier church buildings offering more amenities with preaching and teaching that “encourages” rather than convicts.
Not unlike the lawyer ads and bill boards, churches are now promising easy fixes for the problems of life. There is less emphasis on the challenging words of Jesus who called his followers to lives of strife, sacrifice and persecution not peace, plenty and world domination.
Like lawyers who beg you to “Call me,” churches are pleading “come here.” There is more salvation within our walls. Lawyers need to start admitting that litigation is not the first and easiest solution but the last and toughest choice. Churches need to get back to calling people to Jesus and not to their facilities.
People don’t need Super lawyers or the Best lawyers or Super or the Best churches. They need Jesus. They always have and they always will. Wish I could afford to put that on a billboard.