Thursday, January 31, 2008

The Search to Belong

I picked up a book at the Fuller Seminary library this week called The Search to Belong, by Joseph Myers. It's one of these Zondervan emergent books, with the requisite imprimaturs of Brian McLaren and Leonard Sweet and other emergent coolguys, but I still decided to check it out anyway. I'm enjoying it so far, especially as he explodes some of the myths of community that are held so dearly in the church. I, of course, am always sensitive to the word "introvert" and I was happy to read some contrasting stories in Myers book about extroverts who struggle in community and introverts who thrive.

Here is a good quote, from the "More personality=more belonging" myth:

"Introversion and extroversion are learned forms of social behavior [?] that help us navigate our day-to-day lives. They are categories for helping us understand and interpret our relational experiences. But introversion and extroversion neither block nor enhance our experience of belonging. Healthy community can be experienced and developed by introvert and extrovert alike." (p. 17)

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Introvert Day

Here is a link to an article I found entertaining, in which the author proposes that January 2nd should be called "Happy Introvert Day" because the holidays are over, and introverts can come out of hiding.

Friday, January 18, 2008

Lean on me?

I have done two interviews this week, one with a friend from college, and one with a fellow chaplain and PCUSA pastor. Both of them (introverts, of course) said that at various points they have gotten into relational patterns in which a number of high maintenance, emotionally needy people have looked to them for support on a regular basis. What's your experience? What's your interpretation of that pattern?

Bachelor degree online is a resource for people who want to study psychology or religion to delve further into topics like this. The more we understand about these kinds of subjects, the more we can apply our knowledge to daily life.

Friday, January 11, 2008

Becoming an extrovert?

Earlier today a chaplain/pastor friend of mine said this:

"I know a pastor who was an introvert, but after so many years in ministry, he said he had become an extrovert."

What are your thoughts about that comment?

Tuesday, January 8, 2008


5 chapters down, 5 chapters to go. I finished my chapter on "Finding Healing" on Sunday, and now I am on to the chapter on "Introverted Community." It's getting to the point where I'm starting to think I'm actually going to publish a book. I have one more interview to do before I sit down to write that chapter. After that it's on to the two chapters on introverted leadership, then introverted evangelism and finally, a chapter on helping churches minister to introverts.

Sunday, January 6, 2008

Discarded book excerpt

I couldn't find a place in my book for the following paragraph, and moreover, it feels like a stretch biblically and theologically. And the writing sucks. But I thought I would still publish it somewhere.

What do introverts reveal about God? Introverts reveal the creativity of God, who designed the world in all its beauty, color, abundance, and fecundity. They demonstrate the subtlety and the gentleness of God, who often speaks in whispers rather than in horn blasts and who is usually more reticent than he is talkative. For those who are attuned to hear God’s voice, he seems to speak in words or brief sentences more than he speaks in paragraphs. Introverts, when they have attained a level of personal and spiritual maturity, reveal the restfulness of God, who rested after his creative work and who dwells in his own Shalom. Introverts, with their multi-layered personalities that are only unraveled over time, reveal the mystery of God.