I came across this book review of a book entitled Introverts in the Church. Being an introvert myself, I was curious to read the review. Below is an excerpt from the review. It looks like this could be a helpful read for those of you in ministry leadership.
Few books really change me deeply. Directly. Powerfully. Never to look back. I didn’t expect it, but this one had me spinning for days and still eager to consider the implications more and more. I’ll be honest. I was in a rut. I still am trying to turn my way out. I need refreshment. I need recharging. I need renewal. And God has used Introverts in the Church by Adam McHugh to show me how I put myself in the rut and how to get out. And that was just after the first 2 chapters.
What is realized is that I’ve been working hard for years at being more extroverted. After all, the more extroverted I could be the better I could function in ministry. I’d be a better evangelist and preacher and counselor and networker and so on. Imagine the hunger to be in constant interaction with the people around you in pastoral ministry. I romanticized that idea, but struggled to follow through. I have been streaky at best. And the more I felt guilty about it, the more drained I became and harder I worked to be something that didn’t *click.* McHugh explained a picture of me in the book that opened my eyes.
McHugh helped explain my introversion in super-helpful recognizable attributes (p 42). I recharge best alone or with close friends or family. I need rest after outside activities and interaction with people. I’m territorial with private & family space and treat my home like a sanctuary. Small talk drives me batty. My brain is bubbling with activity no matter what else is going on around me. And so on. I think while reading this chapter I giggled with delight at the things I learned about myself that I knew but didn’t know, if you know what I mean. Ok, I didn’t “giggle.” I’m a dude, after all. But I grinned big and in a giggle-y way.
Introverts in the Church gave me glasses to see myself more clearly as well as the introverts around me. And, by the way, it ends up being very helpful to understand extroverts since comparisons are so often made. Then McHugh weaves them together to show how we individually a mixture of the two since none of us are pure introvert or extrovert, and the church is also a mixture of the two having people of all variations. In many ways this book is really about the varied gifts in the body of Christ and how we need them all.