Puzzles have always fascinated me. Jigsaw puzzles, word search puzzles, 3D
puzzles, any kind of puzzle. Relating to othersat home, at church, at work and
at playpresents a puzzle of a different type: the personality puzzle.
In this issue of On Mission we look at four major personality
stylesthe Doer, the Influencer, the Relator and the Thinker. We consider how we
can be authentic in sharing the gospel, while adjusting our approach to others
in light of how God has wired them.
In my family, we have learned how to utilize one anothers strengths to work
together in relating to our neighbors. Above all else, my dad is an influencer.
Ive never met anyone who finds it so easy to engage others in conversation. As
a thinker, Im the member of the family who is most likely to attend to details
like the names of neighbors and write them down. My mom, a merciful relator, is
usually the family member who calls our neighbors to ask how we can pray for
them. Her sincerity often paves the way for them to share prayer needs.
Of course, we then pray for our neighborsindividually and togetherfor their
expressed needs as well as for their salvation. Weve discovered that because
weve prayed for them by name, were more comfortable in adjusting our personal
styles to deepen those friendships and, we hope, to create future opportunities
to give a verbal witness.
Its now easier for me to be outgoing and ask questions of our neighbors when
I see them. My mom is more comfortable introducing a verbal testimony into
conversations. My dad is able to call people by name and invite them to special
evangelistic events, because they know he really cares. And while were each
doing what we do best, were each learning how to expand our skills in relating
and sharing Christ with others.
As comfortable as we may be functioning within our unique personality
patterns, God often calls us to stretch a bit outside our own comfort zones,
especially when sharing the gospel. Were learning to share Christ in ways that,
though initially uncomfortable to us, are needed to stir their interest and
make a difference.
Mary Lee Griffith, managing editor, On
A Southern Baptist Convention entity supported by the Cooperative Program and theAnnie Armstrong Easter Offering® ©Copyright 2013 North American Mission Board, SBC