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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: The Inner Person (09/09/10)

TITLE: My Label List
By Robyn Burke
09/13/10


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Hello, my name is Ruby. I am an INFP Sanguine golden retriever/otter mix with gifts of compassion, service and discernment.

Wait! Don’t be scared--- let me explain.

You know about all those personality tests out there, right? They all have different labels. It used to be so simple; you were either a Type A or a Type B. Then they came out with Sanguine/Choleric/ Melancholy/Phlegmatic temperament profiles. Now we have the Taylor-Johnson Temperament Test, Gary Smalley’s personality types (beaver, lion, golden retriever, otter) and of course the tried and true, Briggs Meyer Typology. Oh! But there’s more! Rick Warren’s Purpose Driven Life has the SHAPE test (Spiritual gifts, Hearts passions, Abilities, Personality and life Experiences.) The spiritual gifts part of that test is as old as…. well, the Bible! Wow, it’s no wonder I've came away with such a crazy label!

The very first time I took a personality test, I was pretty nervous. Tests are not something I typically do very well on. I was certain I would fail this one and the rest of the world would then know that I had no personality. OK, I’m just kidding. I didn’t really think I would fail, I just wasn’t sure I wanted a (nother) label to put on myself. (let’s see… there were already things like daughter, mother, wife, victim, divorcee, survivor…)

But did I really need a test to tell me who I was? I mean, at this stage of life (middle- aged is what some people call it-- I prefer ‘in my prime’) shouldn’t I already know? I remember those agonizing teenage years where my journal was full of angst as I pondered the age old question “who am I?” (shaking my head.)

Still, personality tests are helpful. Understanding my personal wiring helped me extend some extra grace to myself and it helped my husband understand me even more. It wasn’t so much that the tests defined me per say; it just gave me a better barometer with which to navigate life.

Discovering my spiritual gifts was another powerful tool. What can be better than finding out what you are gifted in and then putting those gifts to use for Kingdom Building? Now, I no longer feel bad when I turn down a request that is not inline with my gifting, just to fill a slot, but instead, feel empowered when I take on a role that I was designed and gifted for!

But perhaps the best tool I have found is to see who I am in Jesus’ eyes. In Ephesians 2. 10 I am told I am a ‘masterpiece’, created to do good works. I am a ‘dwelling place’ for the Holy Spirit. (Ephesians 2.22) I am ‘forgiven’, ‘redeemed’ and ‘loved'.

Until I came to know Jesus, my inner self was pretty starved. In an infant they would call this “failure to thrive.” But as I grew in relationship with Christ, my identity-- my inner self, began to be transformed.

That’s not to say it has always been easy. There have been times in my life when I had to face some ugly stuff. Times where God would hold a mirror up to my soul and show me the garbage I was holding on to. Garbage that was weighing me down and keeping me from being the person He wanted me to be.

Still, ultimately, God sees me as covered in the Redeeming Blood of Christ. In Christ Jesus I am a new creation!

So, let’s do this again…

Hello, my name is Ruby. I am an INFP Sanguine golden retriever…

Umm…

Hello, my name is Ruby, and I’m just a faith walking, spirit talking, fool for Jesus.


"The more you reaffirm who you are in Christ, the more your behavior will begin to reflect your true identity!" (From Victory Over the Darkness, by Dr. Neil Anderson)


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Member Comments
Member Date
Charla Diehl 09/16/10
So much of this story sounded like pages from my life. The personality tests, the spiritual gifts test, the labeling which supposedly explains who we are and why we do what we do. I love your summary sentence because it's just so simple. Yeah, no labels required. Thanks.
Barbara Lynn Culler09/17/10
This is great! The only label that is important is Child of God!

I know how you can go crazy trying to connect yourself to these "tests".

This is written with humor and such truth. Great job. I think this should be a winner!
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 09/18/10
This was an absolute delight to read. I loved it!
Rachel Phelps09/21/10
Such fun! I am a personality quiz addict, so I was going with you there... then had to chuckle at myself. Love the ending.
Christina Banks 09/22/10
Labels can be helpful in some ways, but what really matters is our relationship with Christ. It's who we are in Him that counts. I loved your list at the beginning.