Social Styles – comfortable roles in church

It is more than a month since my last post in the long-running Social Styles series. I am not sure if anyone is interested in the rest of this other than me, but hey whats stopping me wittering on about this a bit before I go on haitus. Incidently, you will notice a couple of visiting bloggers around these parts in the next little while- I hope you enjoy them!

In my last post I showed how the social styles could in some ways reflect the 4 gospels. It is interesting to consider what types of role within churhc life each of the styles might fit into most comfortably. Of course, that is not to say that they have to fit only in these roles. One of the mysteries of church life is that God often uses the least outwardly “suitable” people to fulfill his purposes.

But, none theless you will often find the Driver types in lead positions in church life- functioning almost as a King, a directive person is most comfortable when they are calling the shots. By and large, even those around them are comfortable also as there is nothing like a strong leader to encourage confidence and inspire action in a group. The leader must recognise that people are more important than the task- indeed as I explained in my sermon on sunday, for the christian the task IS the people in any case! But without a directive leader the church will drift or be lead by committee.

You will find the expressive people up front, again inspiring and vision casting but sometimes with less of an idea for how to implement. These guys (and I am one!) can frustrate people unless they are careful to show practically what can be done next. But, they can give energy to the weak and faint hearted and will also brighten up most social encounters. They can naturally tend towards a prophetic streak, being bold enough to challenge but secretly caring a lot more than they let on about what people think.

The amiable is the born pastoral care worker, and will often be behind the scenes smoothing out the carnage that certain other types we have mentioned can leave in their wake sometimes. They are the glue, the salt of the earth. They just have to remember sometimes that it is important to speak up and challenge.

The analytical type seem to be either under-represented or under-utilised in most churches I come accross. We are blessed with some folks who can make things happen right in detail where we are and boy do we need them. These guys are often the administrators and are a real blessing. Praise God for them.

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