Wednesday, July 23, 2008

9 down, 1 to go

Perhaps it's that all this writing over the past 9 months has made me a better and faster writer, or perhaps it's that my August 31st deadline is producing panic, but I have finished chapter 9! Introverts and Evangelism. Here's the first paragraph:

An introverted evangelist? Isn’t that an oxymoron?” That was the response I received when I explained this chapter to a 70 year old retired hospice chaplain who was formerly known for her sensitivity and gentleness. If the juxtaposition of “introverted” and “evangelist” does indeed result in an oxymoron, then it owes not to an inherent contradiction but to a caricature, a culturally distorted understanding of evangelism. In all circles, Christian and non-Christian alike, the word evangelism has an incredible power to conjure negative images, cringes, even guttural reactions. At its worst, the word is a window to images of hellfire street corner preachers spouting to passersby. Even at its best, evangelism summons pictures of animated extroverts armed with quick wit, apologetic skill, and the gift of gab.