Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Personality Types Impact Ministry

1 Corinthians 12:4 There are different kinds of spiritual gifts, but the same Spirit is the source of them all.

Imagine my surprise when I took a personality test and learned that only 4% of the population in the United States share my personality. My wife on the other hand, discovered she has the most common personality type in the nation. All these years I thought I was the "normal" one and she was the "weird" one. What a shock to learn I had it backwards. Of course, my wife was not at all surprised. She always knew I was the nut in the family! Though we often joke about our personality differences, the reality is that we are indeed two different people. The way God designed our personalities impacts how we view the world around us and how we relate to other people, situations and stimuli in our daily life experiences.

Our personalities impact us far more than we may realize. This is not only true in marriage, but it is also true in ministry. Some people are uniquely designed to be leaders of mega-churches. Others are uniquely designed to be Christian counselors. Some are uniquely designed to lead worship. There is no question in my mind that God has uniquely designed me to lead a denominational agency that is making a difference across New England. When we can discover how God has wired us, and then can function in that knowledge, it can make a real difference in our lives. When we try to be something that we are not, in only leads to frustration and confusion. And often it also leads to failure.

It is very tempting to look at others and try to imitate them. But that normally leads us to an emotional dead end. Even if we can fake it for a while, we know deep inside that it is just not who we are. At some point we burn out because we are not functioning in a way that God designed us. But when we can stop trying to be someone else, and rejoice in how God made us, and use that unique design to serve God faithfully, then we are energized and excited in whatever path that takes us. We must realize that no particular personality is "better" than another. Likewise, no specific ministry is more important than another. It takes all personality types, and all types of ministry, to make everything work out in a healthy and balanced way. So stop pretending to be someone else and rejoice in how God made you and serve in a way that is fulfilling and meaningful without comparing yourself to someone with a different personality. Be the best YOU that you can be knowing that the Spirit of God likes how He designed you.

Lord, help us to know ourselves and serve in ways that You designed us for. Amen.


Dr. Terry W. Dorsett serves at the Executive Director of the Baptist Convention of New England. He has been a pastor, church planter, denominational leader and author in New England for more than 20 years. He is a happy husband, a proud father and adoring grandfather. He is a cancer survivor and believes that God works powerfully through times of suffering. He writes extensively and you can find all of his books at:

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