Good Links (The Enneagram Edition)

Do you like personality test? The good gent who counseled me through the early days of sobriety detests them. "Scientifically speaking," he says, marshaling his  best clinical tone, "they're a load of crap." (Crass? Maybe. Just one more reason I love him.) In any event, I rather enjoy a good personality test (avert your eyes, Dr. Ryan), in no small part because I find test-taking enjoyable. (I'm a nerd by nature.) In fact, I never missed an opportunity to take practice tests in school, and on occasion was known to create exams for my friends as a study exercise. I digress...

To the point, this week I decided to take a personality test because (a) I stumbled across a twittersation between Tsh Oxenreider and Leigh Kramer about the Enneagram personality test, (b) I was bored at the time, and (c) I adore tests and had not taken one in some time. I promptly downloaded an iPhone app, and was sucked into the questions of the Enneagram.

I was not surprised by the results. As it turns out, I'm a 5, which means that I'm an "investigator." Investigators, so it is said, tend to retreat into their own thoughts, sometimes hold the good folks around them at arms-length, and can be a touch aloof. DING, DING, DING, DING! Investigators sometimes find their own imaginations more interesting that the real world, which allows them to view things from different, sometimes awkward angles. DING, DING, DING, DING! Investigators hope that others see them as intellectual. DING, DING, DING, DING! Well-known investigators might include Stephen Hawking, Vincent van Gogh, Bill Gates, Kurt Cobain, and Dr. Gregory "House." (I'm not saying... I'm just saying...)

Were the test results terribly surprising? No. It was a heck-of-a-lot of fun, though, and perhaps it explains why I've been reexamining the the world these days, and have been writing on issues like the Christian marketplace, and addiction. Yup, things have been heavy around here; haven't they?

Let's lighten it up.


Leigh Kramer has been a fan of the Enneagram test for some time. She is one of those rare personalities who is passionate about... well... personalities. If you're a fan of a good test, or if you're addicted to all things personality-related, follow this link to her place to learn more about the Enneagram.

Want more? Tsh Oxenreider recently interviewed Kramer on the Enneagram. Take a listen.

Don't miss these hilarious Enneagram cartoons. I don't believe in paint by the numbers, but these cartoons will peg you by the number. I promise.

"Lean into the pain." I reckon 5s are good at this sort of thing, but this isn't about personality. I've been writing in a quieter space about walking into the pain, about the ways in which I'm finding resolution. Want to know what I mean? Check out this video at Sarah Bessey's place, where she chats with Travis Reed of The Work of the People.

In the June edition of Christianity Today, D.L. Mayfield writes this beautiful piece on the case for Christian temperance. As one in the recovery process, I appreciate her fresh take on alcohol and liberty. She seats the conversation in love, justice, and homogeneity. She writes:

If you wear an 'I heart bacon' T-shirt, I will have to assume you don't have many Muslim or Jewish friends. Likewise, if you are posting about how 'Mommy needs her wine,' I will assume you don't know anyone struggling with alcoholism.

You'll have to subscribe to Christianity Today to read this article, but it's worth the price of admission.


I've been digging into Marva J. Dawn's book, Powers, Weakness, and the Tabernacling of God. She's dropping dimes, like:

"If we are to be faithful to our position in weakness, we will know that we offer truth best not by pontificating pronouncements or political maneuverings, but by simply speaking and living truly."

For those of you considering modern American structures and their effect on the Christianity, you'll want to snag a copy of this book.


I'm finding my ways back to the old wells. Depth over distance every time.


These are my favorite links of the week. What are yours?

Good Links (The Ring Leader Edition)

I live with some good folks. I wanted to share a photo of two of them. We've come to the end of another week. Do you feel it? Did you make the most of it?

Amber's leaving town this weekend to work on a writing project that's brewing. As much as I miss her when she's gone, I'm excited for her. She has good words percolating. I hope they'll make their way to your hands one day.

Yes, Amber is leaving, which means that I'll go from being a working father, to being the circus ring-leader of my four boys. I have big plans. Legos, man-night, pizza, root beer, movies with Japanese monsters that eat entire buildings in one gulp--we'll do it all.

I'll be occupied, no doubt. But for those of you with less weekend occupation, here are a few links to keep you busy.


This week, Amber describes sisterhood with her yoga instructor. Sure, there was the obligatory comment push-back regarding the eastern origins of yoga, but I reckon we all knew that was coming.

Shawn Smucker penned a beautiful piece for my blog this week. I could not be more humbled that he shared it here. Not only does he personify the corn fields in an incredible way, he deals with the issues of guilt and shame, and does it all with such a light touch. Shawn is the real deal.

Winn Collier dropped a twenty dollar thought in this week's piece entitled "The Good, Small Faith." He writes, "Many insist that Christian maturity means our faith grows larger and larger, but I believe that as we deepen into good life, our faith actually grows smaller and smaller." This is a short piece, but you won't want to miss it.

Sarah Bessey is a brave soul. This week, she asked the question "should an egalitarian attend a complementarian church?" Sweet Bertha. She's asking for it. And her people? They delivered. (See the comments.)


Yesterday, I ran across the wonderful Ann Voskamp's "Occupy Facebook," challenge, wherein she (and others) challenged us to take back Facebook by posting photos of art instead of... say... cats. I opted in, and she assigned me Wifredo Lam--attorney and artist extraordinaire. I posted his photo of Lam's work, "The Jungle."


I co-opted Sarah Markley's Facebook feed, asked her to participate by sharing a piece by Emma Marie Cadwalader Guild. She did. It's called, "Free."



It's been a good month for literary feasting here in the Ozarks. We've had our fair share of sub-freezing temperatures and gale-force winds, so we've hunkered down with good books here in the Haines house. This month, I took down Jeanne Murray Walker's incredible book The Geography of Memory: A Pilgrimage Through Alzheimer's and Richard Rohr's The Naked Now: Learning to See as the Mystics Saw.

"Although most of the accounts I’ve read about Alzheimer’s are characterized by horror, the truth is, even my mother’s final months were not relentlessly grim. … Watching her was like watching a rowboat come loose and drift away from a dock. I was the one standing on the dock watching the boat glide away." ~Jeanne Murray Walker

"Jesus, as the icon of Christ Consciousness, is the very template of total paradox: human yet divine, heavenly but earthly... [a]nd we have made this momentous and cosmic Christ into the private savior of our personal agendas." ~Richard Rohr

Neither book is what I'd call an easy read, but by-gum, they are solid additions to your library.


For those of you who know me, you know of my fondness for Carl Sandburg. This is a video of his digitized self reading "The People, Yes." I can't stop watching it.



We're all recovering from something. I believe it. Come ye cynics, ye drunkards, ye abused and abusers. Take a listen.