I have almost finished The Introverted Charismatic and am now plowing through Introverts In The Church.
Both books have been incredibly eye opening, not only by providing me with questions (Am I a charismatic? Am I evangelical?), but also by illustrating a deeper chasm between introvert and extrovert in the church than I thought existed.
It saddens and wearies me. Mostly because it is a bunch of bunk foolishness. Let me explain…
In both books, the point was made that some churches will be actively deliberate not to hire introverted pastors. That makes me wince a little, because it is ridiculous, but I can understand that society misunderstands the difference between “shy” and “recharges one’s energy via quiet times”. I can give them the bye on not being well read on what the difference is.
However, both books ALSO give quotes about introverts’ “self-centeredness” and lack of faith. The quotes from a few “experts” show a complete ignorance of introversion. I was ASTOUNDED to see these quotes, to think that anyone would dare even consider such hurtful and ignorant ideas. I have not heard these ideas presented to me, as an introvert, though folk might have thought them. But now that I have seen them, I want to address them.
We’ve “quit preachin’ and gone to meddlin'”. I am willing to be patient with the misunderstanding of extroversion and introversion in the church–it is like a fish trying to understand a mouse. They each crave different environments, each “selfishly” gain their energy from different sources.
None of that–NONE OF THAT– has anything at all to do with faith or works in faith or the desire to see others saved.
None of it.
But it also might be, again, out of a misunderstanding. I would like to, carefully, walk through a few points. Please feel free to jump in with thoughts. If you are an extrovert, ask questions. Let us know where there might be confusion. I am not irritated at people who simply didn’t understand. It is the perfect chance to clear up misconceptions. You are safe to ask questions here.
If you are an introvert, feel free to comment and state your thoughts and ideas too.