Emotional Maturity Test


The following diagnostic helps to establish a paradigm of discipleship that includes emotional maturity, but in a practical and personal way.

Emotional health is not merely an idea to think about. It is an experience for you when you are alone and in your close relationships with others. Take a few minutes to reflect on this simple inventory to get a sense of where you are as a disciple of Jesus Christ, both as an individual and at church. It will help you get a sense of whether your discipleship has touched the emotional components of your life and, if so, how much.

It's natural to feel uneasy or uncomfortable about some of the questions. Try to be as vulnerable and open as possible. Remember that the inventory will reveal nothing about you that is news to God. Take a moment to pray that God will guide your responses and to remember that you can afford to be honest because he loves you dearly without condition.

Please answer these questions as honestly as possibly.

PART A: General Formation and Discipleship


PART B: Emotional Components of Discipleship


Principle 1: Look Beneath the Surface


Principle 2: Break the Power of the Past


Principle 3: Live in Brokenness and Vulnerability


Principle 4: Receive the Gift of Limits


Principle 5: Embrace Grieving and Loss


Principle 6: Make Incarnation Your Model for Loving Well


Interpretation Guide: Levels of Emotional Maturity

Emotional infant. Like a physical infant, I look for other people to take care of me more than I look to care for them. I often have difficulty in describing and experiencing my feelings in healthy ways and rarely enter the emotional world of others. I am consistently driven by a need for instant gratification, often using others as objects to meet my needs, and am unaware of how my behavior is effecting/hurting them. People sometimes perceive me as inconsiderate, insensitive, and self-centered.

Emotional children. Like a physical child, when life is going my way and I am receiving all the things I want and need, I am content and seem emotionally well-adjusted. However, as soon as disappointment, stress, tragedy, or anger enter the picture, I quickly unravel inside. I interpret disagreements as a personal offense and am easily hurt by others.When I don't get my way, I often complain, throw an emotional tantrum, withdraw, manipulate, drag my feet, become sarcastic, or take revenge. I have difficulty calmly discussing with others what I want and expect from them in a mature loving way.

Emotional adolescents. Like a physical adolescent, I know the right ways I should behave in order to "fit in"mature, adult society. I can feel threatened and alarmed inside when I am offered constructive criticism, quickly becoming defensive. I subconsciously keep records on the love I give out, so I can ask for something in return at a later time.When I am in conflict, I might admit some fault in the matter, but I will insist on demonstrating the guilt of the other party, proving why they are more to blame. Because of my commitment to self-survival, I have trouble really listening to another person's pain, disappointments, or needs without becoming preoccupied with myself.

Emotional adults. I can respect and love others without having to change them or becoming critical and judgmental. I don't expect anyone to be perfect in meeting my relational needs, whether it be my spouse, parents, friends, boss, or pastor. I love and appreciate people for who they are as whole individuals, the good and the bad, and not for what they can give me or how they behave. I take responsibility for my own thoughts, feelings, goals, and actions.When under stress, I don't fall into a victim mentality or a blame game. I can state my own beliefs and values to those who disagree with me—without becoming adversarial. I am able to accurately self-assess my limits, strengths, and weaknesses and freely discuss them with others. Deeply in tune with my own emotions and feelings, I can move into the emotional worlds of others, meeting them at the place of their feelings, needs, and concerns. I am deeply convinced that I am absolutely loved by Christ, that I have nothing to prove.

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