IN THE NEXT COUPLE OF WEEKS or so, Magnet subscribers will hear the sound of issue 101 dropping thought their letter boxes. I was assistant editor for this issue – entitled More than words. We wanted to look at conversation – between ourselves, in our relationship with God and ways we can talk to each other without using words.
One article in this issue is written by Julia McGuinness, who talks about personality types – looking into introversion and extraversion. This is a topic of interest for me at the moment; I touch on it in my book as I explore how we have different ways of relating to faith; I’ve also come across it in other areas – for example, I’m currently reading Quiet, by Susan Cain, which pleads the cause of the introvert in a culture which encourages the opposite.
I wonder, too, if in our churches we play up the extrovert style – increasingly interactive, with a lot of emphasis on sharing (often with people we don’t know very well). We live in a culture that is keen on self-promotion, proving ourselves, exhibiting confidence, openness, the power of team.
But here’s the thing. We’re not all made in the same mould. We are, as McGuinness puts it, delightfully different. We lose energy trying to be something we’re not; forcing ourselves to live in a way that requires continual pretence. Job descriptions even include the word ‘extrovert’, as if introverts shouldn’t bother to apply.
Hello world, I’m me. If God had wanted another you, why did he make me? Just asking.