What I learned from playing the card game of war.

Finding entertainment in a Puerto Rico post-Maria is a challenge. I found a deck of cards at my house and I started playing card games. Solitaire, black jack, and war… by myself. In playing War, I have learned several things:

  1. I don’t know what your resources are until I have gone through all of the cards on my deck.
  2. I have to win the game with what I got.
  3. Rigging the game doesn’t guarantee victory.
  4. Things can change in an instant. Keep being persistent
  5. It’s hard to be unbiased and not choose sides.
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Intj’s ideal church ministry.

When I was younger, I would act on plays and do other public things. Yet I always felt a great level of discomfort when I was acting or singing in the altar. I realize now that even though the experiences were pivotal for my growth and sense of belonging to a group, what I was involved in wasn’t the areas where I was excellent at. 
Now that I’m older, have a graduate degree, and work experience, I have a better understanding of what things I want to be a part of in the church. I realized that I really like writing proposals for church initiatives. I believe that this is an area where I can put to use all I have learned and I can take advantage of the strengths of being an intj.

Ways INTJs reflect trust in someone.

  1. Giving them access to my most priced information. This is the one way that I can measure not only whether I trust the person, but how much do I trust them. Depending on what I share is how much I trust them. If I not only share what is going on but also how I feel about it, that means that there is ultimate trust in being vulnerable with you.
  2. Being okay with their physical contact. I as an INTJ don’t like physical contact… from the people I don’t trust. Even if I have interacted with them for more than a decade, the reality is that if I don’t trust them and/or I see them as a negative and annoying person I wouldn’t want them near me. People like my biological and adoptive father, for example, are people that I see as positive and trustworthy with my getting near them. They can get close and not feel repulsed by it. I can get close and trust that they know how… not to respond. I am still trying to train them to respond in an acceptable way.
  3. Willing to give them my time. Time is my most priced commodity. I like spending a lot of time by myself… away from annoying people. I need time to recharge and to live and be my full self. If I give someone my time or find myself willing to give someone my time, it means to me that I trust them to react the way I see fit and value what I am giving.
  4. Asking for their feedback. I always feel that I am better at figuring out what is the best for myself. My mother and my sister would impose what was best for me with no regard of my preferences and who I am as a person. This made me learn to trust no one. I have learned with time that feedback is important and it is most valuable if it’s in the context of trust. So if I ask for feedback, then it means that I think that the feedback is trustworthy because I think that the person is competent, has a pretty good understanding of who I am, and isn’t judgmental of who I am and what I stand for.
  5. I give them my most honest thoughts. Let’s be real. Most people don’t believe what I believe. I have had a history of having my thoughts being rejected by the people who were supposed to nurture me to become the best version of myself, so I learned to keep my most honest thoughts to myself. I know that I trust someone if I am willing to take the risk of sharing what I think. I don’t expect others to agree with me, even though it is a good feeling. I do expect to be treated with respect. The more I see that the other person does this on a consistent basis, the more I am willing to take the risk.

5 random facts about me.

  1. I feel more connected to YouTubers than people in real life, especially those that appeal to my ideals and preferences.
  2. I take time to rehearse expressing my preferences and opinions about things. Never helps when it comes time to state them to someone else.
  3. I deal with acid reflux.
  4. I have a physical deformity where the left side of my sternum is about 1/4″ more raised and higher than the right side of my sternum.
  5. This is a very difficult type of post to do.

How INTJs deal with temptation.

By ourselves.

Seriously. We INTJs prefer to keep our personal lives… well, private. This includes but is not limited to preferences, dislikes, thoughts, opinions, emotions, personal history, trials, and temptations, just to name a few. Don’t be offended by our secrecy. You won’t truly understand it anyway.

Temptation is a thing that happens to everyone. My experience dealing with temptation is filled with variety. Things that vary are:

  1. What I am being tempted with.
  2. Intensity of the temptation.
  3. What is at stake.
  4. How I end up responding to it.

The reality of temptation is that it is plentiful, but not necessarily creative. Let’s be real: Satan ain’t really creative.

To me, temptation is something that starts in the mind and ends in the mind. Whether I succumb to it or not, I seem to interpret temptation as more of a mental battle than a physical or social one. To me it makes more sense because I live the bulk of my life inside my head.

Usually I follow these steps when dealing with temptation:

  1. I get the temptation (duh!).
  2. Recognize that a temptation is happening.
  3. 2 routes of action:
    1. Stay still until it goes away.
    2. Screw it and give in.
  4. End of temptation.

There is this implicit cultural thing in my church where I have been led to think that I should take authority to cast out the source of the temptation. I never do it because I don’t think that I have the authority to do it. It is also socially draining to do that every time temptation happens.

So I wait it out. Alone. By myself. Only God is around. Not always successful though.

No one knows how many battles I have had with temptation. No one knows the price that I have paid to remain a Christian. I don’t know if my way of dealing with temptation is generalizable to anyone else. All I know is that this is my experience.

Speaking up in my church as an INTJ.

In this year I have had several opportunities to participate in a church service. It has been singing songs. I use the minutes before I sing to share my perspective on the topic I am going to sing about.

Usually, I share it as the story of how I came to a specific conclusion that is related to the song I am about to sing. I always start by saying that I am introspective and analytical in nature. Then I share what happened in my life that led me to understand something important about God. It tends to take about 5 minutes. Then I sing the song.

I haven’t always been talkative when I sing a song. Talking before a song has been something that has developed with time. I still make mistakes, but I am still learning.

There is another reason for me not talking much: I hadn’t had the perspective and experiences to really have something to say.

I am a 20 something musician that has lived more than half of my life as a Christian and have been more than half of that time in active ministry. This time has been filled with experiences and teachings that I have finally got the skill and confidence to share.

I have come to understand that my church needs my perspective because it is one that is not common. Because of the lack of examples of my more contemplative type of Christianity in my church’s public discourse, I think that it is a good idea to share how the God-approved use these traits can lead to increase your understanding of God, who He is, and how He operates. Because I am not given more opportunities to speak up, I have learned to take advantage of the limited time that I have.

Sharing my experience in my Christian walk is not natural. It means being open to criticism and rejection. But God didn’t give me my experience and perspective to keep quiet. My willingness to share something personal is a sign of my growth and my embracing of what God wants my new role to be.

My INTJ perspective of what I want to be as a Christian.

I want to play into my strengths. I want for my introverted and analytical nature to be seen as good and valuable. I want to be a calm, cool, and collected Christian that has a peaceful vibe. I want to be logical and intuitive. I want to live out a more contemplative brand of Christianity.  I want to be able to be a welcoming force for God to reveal His secrets.

I want to be a representation of the value of being open to learning experiences with God. I want to normalize using the brain that God gave me to serve in the church I am a part of without having to sensor aspects of myself because they can’t be used by God for good. I want to be a leader that works to help the long term vision of the church be transmitted and come to fruition.

I want to be a person whose humor doesn’t have to exclude being respected as a leader. I want to be the type of Christian that can preach the Word of God providing fresh perspectives to the people I am meant to serve. I want to be this attractive force for people that believe in the type of vision that God give me.

I want to become the type of person and Christian that will make God proud of me.

 

 

INTJs and their Christian growth.

In the church that I go to I am rare. Really rare. The brand of Christianity that is marketed tends to be for more ESFX people. That is not me. This means that I am alone with God in how I have to work out my Christian walk.

I started my Christian walk at 13 years and 2 months of age. I am 27 years and close to 1 month old. It’s been a while. I always took time to think things through. This process happened internally and was always kept quiet from everyone.

I tended to have a pretty good idea of what I want my brand of Christianity to be, meaning what type of Christian do I want to be viewed as. The question that I asked myself was whether it was possible and whether it could be approved from society. Coming from a house environment where everything that was naturally me was not approved and church that made me feel that who I am is wrong, this was really important. I needed approval from a better source of what I wanted for myself and what I was becoming. My challenge has been finding people who modeled the traits that I want for myself as a person and see that that person was respected and successful.

The reality is that I could never see all of the traits in one person. I had to see that the trait I want for myself worked and figure out how it fits with everything else. I needed to figure out how to walk it out. I can sort of safely say that after more than a decade I think that I finally have that aspect figured out.

 

Things that have brought a sense of normalcy after Maria.

  1. Cellphone connection.
  2. Internet data.
  3. Lower lines for everything.
  4. Tap water.
  5. Finally setting up the music room after the hurricanes.
  6. Places with WiFi.
  7. Lower traffic.
  8. Cleared up roads.

I do have to put a disclaimer here: this is only representative of my experience. My experience is as a young person living in the metro area of Puerto Rico. I am aware that people living in the counties in the mountainous area of Puerto Rico are still dealing with great difficulty.