The Temperament – A Gateway to Understanding
One of the great truths of man’s creation is that God equips people with a temperament. This temperament is the part of the flesh that affects behavior. Inherently, a temperament is neither good nor bad; it exists much like the color of one’s eyes or hair. It adds the tone, the color, the dimension to our personality. If everyone had the same temperament, things would be pretty boring. But just as God has provided you with a unique appearance; He has also blessed you with a unique temperament.
Now this temperament provides inclinations that affect your behavior. You may find large numbers of people attractive, or you may prefer to know just a few, carefully chosen individuals. You may be fun-loving and active, or find that quiet meditation produces more satisfaction. There is an endless list of likes and dislikes that are initiated by the temperament you were built with.
Your temperament has both strong points and liabilities. With an accurate knowledge of the characteristics of your temperament, the answer to “Why do I do this?” often appears. When you start to understand that some of the things you want to do are inspired by the way your physical nature was constructed, you start to gain freedom. You can now decide whether or not going with what your physical nature suggests, or something else, such as what God’s Spirit suggests through His Word. This internal dialogue is very real, and the decisions you make create your life. So, how will you decide?
Man has spent thousands of years trying to understand the temperament. Just as the DNA of man has finally been mapped (but still holds millions of mysteries) the study of the temperament has revealed much. The more understanding you have of this important information, the freer you will become. With that freedom comes the ability to share it with others.
In the early 1980’s, two Christian Ph D. researchers sought to further understand the temperament and how it fits into God’s plan for creation. By researching over 5000 people they produced an assessment tool that accurately reflects the God-given nature of the temperament that was given by God to the subject. This work identified five clearly definable area of the temperament. They developed a reliable method of assessing man’s temperament. They identified three major aspects of relationships: social, control, and close, personal relationships. In short, they defined 5 major types of temperament plus twelve areas of blended temperament and three different aspects of behavior, resulting in 4913 possible temperament types.
By using a simple 54 question inventory, a subject can have their temperament accurately analyzed and reported. Far from pigeon-holing an individual into one of 4 or 5 possible categories, this insightful report zeros in to an amazingly precise level. A treatment plan, which clearly identifies problem areas and suggests to the counselor appropriate treatment options, the clinical version of this tool is widely used by thousands of practicing Christian Counselors, is also provided.