MODELS OF BIBLICAL HOLINESS EVANGELICAL MINISTRY
A DAILY DEVOTIONAL
FRIDAY, 14TH SEPTEMBER, 2018
TOPIC: UNDERSTANDING YOUR TEMPERAMENT: PHLEGMATIC
KEY TEXT: “In a wealthy home some utensils are made of gold and silver, and some are made of wood and clay. The expensive utensils are used for special occasions, and the cheap ones are for everyday use.
If you keep yourself pure, you will be a special utensil for honorable use. Your life will be clean, and you will be ready for the Master to use you for every good work.
(2 Timothy 2 :20-21).
Phlegmatic is derived from the word “phlegm” which is a body fluid that is either stagnant or moves at a very slow speed. To expel the phlegm mucus from the bronchial passages of the body, one will need to apply force and cough it out. This stagnancy or slow movement of the body fluid called phlegm and its need of force to be made to move summarizes the personality of a person that is phlegmatic in nature. The most important advantage of studying the four temperaments dominant in people is that it will give you an answer to why people are behaving differently from one another, and also give you the best tactics you will use in relating with each kind of person to avoid quarrels.
The positive traits of people that are phlegmatic in nature is that they are calm, peaceful, patient, sympathetic, meek, gentle, submissive, good listeners without interrupting the speaker, longsuffering, kind, peacemakers, etc. They are quick to apologize for any mistake they have made, and can sacrifice their own happiness to ensure that others are happy.
The negative traits or weaknesses of people that are phlegmatic in nature cannot be overemphasized. They don’t act unless you push them. Even if you push them, they will relax where your pushing stops. During every activity which involves them, they will prefer to be mere watchers than active participants. They hate anything that will exert much energy from them. If they must be involved in any business, job, or work, they will prefer minor ones and yet be slow in fulfilling them. They are lazy. They love resting, sleeping, eating and watching television. They hate anything that will bring them to public speech or presentations. They are weak leaders. Under their leadership things don’t change. They don’t discipline offenders well. They are easily tired. They are always buried with their talents and ideas because they see implementing them as something that will take them energy. They hate stress. A phlegmatic wife can prepare to cook one pot of soup all day. The phlegmatic in nature procrastinates a lot. Even if things are done wrongly around them to their knowledge, they will keep mum about it. They would rather sigh on things that go wrong than act. They are pessimistic and introverted. They neglect their duties a lot. They are indecisive, very difficult to motivate, and are also unwilling to involve in deep relationships. It may take a phlegmatic lady years to say yes to a man asking for her hand in marriage, yet that must come after being gingered. They are inexpressive and always passive. They always defend themselves verbally to save their energy. Their lives are full of unfinished projects. They may gain admission in school and stop halfway. Nothing bothers them. They are always satisfied with their present condition even if you don’t see why. They are always tormented by fear of the unknown and uncertainties which makes them not to venture into risks or activities that may favour them. As christians, they are self-righteous. They always hide their real feelings and rather get minimally involved in any present activity they are gingered or influenced into. They are not goal oriented in any activity. Due to their hiding nature, they will prefer to walk away from arguments. They are complacent, and are always seeking for an escape routes from conflicts rather than be victorious. Women like me who have a mixture of the extroverted sanguine-choleric temperamental nature will not want a man that is phlegmatic in nature as husband, because, both the sanguine and the choleric find joy, peace, and fulfilment where there is visible expression and activity consciousness. Both sanguine and choleric are praise seekers which cannot come from the phlegmatic. A husband that is phlegmatic in nature does not praise the wife’s food and looks no matter how good they are. They are fun-killers. If you prompt them to tell you their feelings, they may just sigh or say “it’s well”.
Honestly, I don’t know any activity in church I can match the phlegmatic with. I didn’t get the ministrations. I am sorry if you are phlegmatic in nature and you are seeing your picture here. You may have many things you are good at in church because you may also have a touch of other temperaments in you. But I suggest you befriend a sanguine or choleric to help bring you out of your shell of stagnancy, slowness, procrastination, and inactivity.
In the Bible, Timothy was phlegmatic. Paul had to ginger him several times through letters to motivate him in his spiritual race. Barnabas was also phlegmatic. When he had arguments with Paul on the missionary journeys, he (Barnabas) as a peacemaker, picked John Mark as his companion and went another way. Abraham also exhibited some phlegmatic qualities because he denied his wife twice and referred to her as his sister because of fear of the unknown. It was uncertainty, doubt and pessimism which are dominant in the phlegmatic nature that made Abraham to accept to go in to Hagar and bear Ishmael under the prompting of his wife, rather than wait for God. But I must say that one of the positive traits of the phlegmatic is that they leave their fights and struggles to be done for them by unseen powers they have faith in or believe in. If they are Christians, they leave it for God like Abraham did severally.
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I wish you a successful day ahead.
See you again tomorrow by God’s grace if rapture does not occur before then.