“I want you to take this test.” My middle son handed me his laptop.
“I’ve never taken a personality test, Johnathan.”
“Just take it.”
Ten minutes later, John announced my assessment and it was the nicest way I’ve heard so far that I am a little bit crazy, which sadly, I have heard a lot in my lifetime.
“It says you have ‘a complicated inner life’.” Johnathan says, the smile threatening to split into an outright laugh.
“Josh, listen to this: ‘this personality’s attributes probably contribute to their remarkable ability to experience a whole array of psychic phenomena.'”
Where in the world does that kind of comment come from a standard kind of personality assessment? I shouldn’t have taken the dad blasted thing. But there you go, how many times have you heard me say I believe in the supernatural, at least the God kind. I am the first to admit I have yet to move a table telepathically. Although…
“They have mysterious, intricately woven personalities which sometimes puzzle even them,” John keeps going.
“John, stop reading. Or at least read something positive.”
“That explains it,” says my Josh. “I figured she had a lot of voices in her head. No telling how seldom they all agree.”
“Let me have that,” I told Johnathan, as I took the laptop from him and began to read.
It pays to see yourself through someone else’s eyes. Or in this case, the insight from a personality test.
I’m not saying that it was 100 percent accurate but the truth was, I saw myself in ways that I might have suspected but had not fleshed out and maybe even a few things I had never considered in the way the test did. I will be honest, it gave me pause.
In the meantime we guessed at what Jake’s would have been and I bet that his results would not have been different had he been in the living room with us taking the test. He was a very knowable man, even the short time he was with us. We tested Grandmother and Silent Bob and it was no surprise when they came back in the exact same quadrant of the helpful diagram that came with the assessment. John’s and John’s were debatable on several points, we tried answering for them with varying results, but something I have always know about them was detailed vividly. They are men of courage and service with a protective instinct that in my own case, frequently quiets my apparently ‘complex inner life’.
I’ve been thinking about those tests. They were interesting to me for the following reason. They are not based on appearance or education. They are not articulated to measure any physical attributes. They look solely at your personality. Now certainly, something about the outside of you influences the inside of you, but a peek into the inside of you, your heart, your mind is a much different metric than the way we increasingly view people.
My mind going as far as the test accurately dictated, I managed to extrapolate that tests like these are perhaps feeble but reasonable tries at a description of an individual’s soul. Basically, what makes you you. Now that’s a thought, isn’t it? Rather than the changeable measures of how old one is or how thin one strives to be, or how curly ones hair is or dark another’s skin, or how much money one might have or whether one has great prowess on an athletic field, it looks at the very thing that makes us decide whether to cheat for money or be prone to spiritual things, to be willing to join the army or be the class clown.
Sort of stripping us down who we are without the outside trappings.
Maybe its because I am getting old and everything about society tells me I should do everything to try not to look like I am. Or maybe it’s the wonderment in my own heart that tells me, something special happens to each of our consciousnesses when the physical part of us ends. Maybe its the sheer uniqueness of who we are. Once born, there is not nor has ever been and never will be another just like each of us. There is some serious opportunity to think some interesting thoughts here.
This morning what I am thinking is that soul part of us is a little bit like seeing us through God’s eyes. Surely he made each one of us for a unique and specific purpose with talents and gifts and drive. He is not nearly as interested in the outside of us as He is the inside of us. And I have to be honest, today, my goal is to use the way He made me to His glory. My personality tends to want to worry, be anxious, but today I am going to do what Jesus said two thousand years ago.
Then Jesus said to his disciples: ‘Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat; or about your body, what you will wear. Life is more than food, and the body more than clothes. Consider the ravens: They do not sow or reap, they have no storeroom or barn; yet God feeds them. And how much more valuable you are than birds! Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life? Since you cannot do this very little thing, why do you worry about the rest?’” (Luke 12:22-26, NIV).
I hope you have a blessed Monday.
Author’s note: the test was the Keirsey one. I understand there are a number of them. In case you are interested go here.