When I look at the church – both the local churches in which I am located, and the wider institutional Church to which they belong – I see the problems. My sentences in conversation, my posts on my blog, often – very often – begin, “The problem is...”
This is not because I am a negative person.
This is because I am wired as a change-agent; and with the following StrengthsFinder strengths:
Strategic – spotting relevant patterns and issues, and creating alternative ways to proceed.
Intellection – intellectual activity, introspection and intellectual discussion.
Relator – enjoying close relationships and finding deep satisfaction in working hard with friends to achieve a goal.
Belief – unchanging core values, out of which emerges a defined purpose for my life.
Ideation – fascination with ideas, and the ability to find connections between seemingly disparate phenomena.
I see things that need to be addressed, and look to nurture close relationships with others to forge a team to play the game together. And where I am free to be me, and to serve the church primarily by playing to my strengths, and relating to the complementary strengths of others, it is a joyful thing, albeit a fight: like a sports team who belong to one another, win, draw or lose.
The problem is, at the moment I am not free to play to my strengths...
The problem is, the longer such conditions continue, the harder it is to not slip into negative mindsets, where the problems cease to be exciting challenges...