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Evangelism and personality

23 Jan

We all have different gifts and callings, and we shouldn’t be in the business of forcing everyone into the same mold or declaring that some gifts put their bearers in a higher tier of godliness.

And here, I need to give special attention to my fellow introverts. The people who go through the conference circuit, have a billion personal evangelism stories, or visit 1700 churches to give talks about missionary work are usually raging extroverts. They genuinely fail to understand that introverts aren’t constantly talking with our neighbors and coworkers, that we don’t have a huge social circle, and that we don’t strike up conversations with strangers. They ask the congregation when they last invited their neighbors to church, and we’re all sitting there trying to remember the last time we even spoke with our neighbors and what their names are. The natural consequence of this is that the shape of personal evangelism is very very different for us. Super-spiritual extroverts tend to dismiss that difference as shyness, cowardice, laziness, ungodliness, and so forth, but they do so in great ignorance.

Remember the Widow’s Mite. Though she offered only a small coin, Jesus said that out of her poverty she gave more than anyone else. The same holds true when it comes to the introverted, the autistic, and all those who live in some manner of social poverty. Popular speakers who are socially wealthy may not know what personal evangelism costs you, but God does.

Matthew Cochran

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7 Comments

Posted by on January 23, 2018 in religion, spirituality, Theology

 

7 responses to “Evangelism and personality

  1. An observer

    January 23, 2018 at 4:02 am

    Thank you. Very encouraging.

     
    • Will S.

      January 23, 2018 at 6:52 am

      You’re welcome. Agreed. I’m mostly extraverted, but I have occasional introverted tendencies; e.g. at work, I prefer to eat lunch alone, which likely makes others consider me antisocial, as if that were bad. It’s not. It’s just how some people roll.

      I guess it’s human nature, fallen human nature that is, to see whatever personality traits we have as normative, and to disparage others with different ones as wrong, even sinful, to behave differently than us. Sad. Hopefully others will be encouraged by Cochran’s recognition and highlighting of this, too.

       
  2. feeriker

    January 23, 2018 at 8:12 am

    Thanks for this, Will. Good points that Cochran makes.

     
    • Will S.

      January 23, 2018 at 12:33 pm

      You’re welcome, feeriker. Agreed.

       

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