Monday, August 24, 2009

God's will....

Being in the ministry, people often come up to me wanting advice about God's will. I have been known to say that if you really desire to know God's will and be obedient to Him, then He will make His will clear to you and won't let you "accidently" miss His will. He doesn't delight in us being frustrated about which direction to go...He wants to lead us and make His will clear and plain to us.

So, with all of that said, this summer I've been seeking God's will. For the past four years, I have been working during the school year at an elementary school. It has been a good job, with good benefits and retirement. However, each year, I have sought God's will if I should go back to work, because my primary calling is to be a wife and strong support to my husband and family, and to be a part of the pastoral team for our church. Now, if you are a follower of my blog, you know that we are now pastoring not one, but two locations. So, this year, with all of the changes, seemed like a critical year to me to be sure that I was doing what God wanted me to. I begged God for a clear word if I should continue to work at the school. All was quiet. I began to get desperate as the time neared that I would need to notify the school. I began to open my Bible and point to random scriptures...not exactly what I would recommend to others to try...and not particularly effective. I even flipped a coin and asked for a sign! Let's just say, about 50% of the time the answers were different than the time before...go figure!

Here's the frustrating husband, instead of telling me what to do said, "Whatever you want to do, I'll support you." So, there went my option for someone to blame if I made the wrong decision! When push came to shove, I decided the only reason I was holding on to the job was fear about finances..."what if this? what if that?" My heart wanted to stay home, take better care of my home and family, and plunge in wholeheartedly to what God has called me to be and to do. Finally, based on Matthew 6:24-25, I made my decision. I emailed the principal and told him I was not returning this year and why.

I never did have a moment of knowing with rock solid assurance that I had heard God about this. But, I have to rest in the advice I give to others...If you really are wanting God's will and if you are really wanting to obey Him, then He's not going to let you miss His will.

Friday, August 14, 2009


It's the 14th of August and I am hibernating. My husband and I traditionally take Fridays as our day off. Being in the ministry, Saturday ends up being a day to make sure you are all ready for Sunday, so Fridays have always been our day instead. (Obviously, during the school year when I am working this doesn't work, so our only "time off" together is Friday evening.) When, yesterday, my husband asked what I wanted to do today I couldn't think of anything else to say but, "absolutely nothing".

In my mind, this summer was going to be laid back and relaxing. In reality, other than our trip to Palm Springs in June, it has been a pretty busy summer. We have been working hard on the merge of our two churches and getting to know the wonderful people in our new congregation. We've had church campouts and youth camps. We've made plans and tried to solve problems. We've helped to care for my mother who lives close by, we've done household chores and repairs, balanced checkbooks and paid bills, and best of all, spent time with the kids and grandkids...the busyness of daily life.

This week it hit me. Fall is almost here, and instead of feeling ready and refreshed, I feel tired. So, today I decided to give myself permission to do nothing and go nowhere...
Instead I've stayed in comfy lounging clothes sans makeup and read a book that made me both laugh and cry, I've taken a nap, I woke up and made some homemade pizza dough that is now rising for tonight's dinner, now I'm going to watch my favorite cooking show or maybe a favorite movie. I am hibernating today...and I'm happy.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Joy unplugged...

Last Sunday, my husband had me teach the Word for our two Sunday services. Notice that I said teach, because I do not consider myself a preacher, but a teacher. I love the Word of God, and I believe that I have been called to teach it and to hopefully encourage others to fall in love with Its riches as well. It was one of those times when the study came together easily, when I knew it's what God wanted said, and when I felt a powerful anointing as I ministered. As I taught, I had a feeling of being "fully alive"-of doing what I was created to do.

I wish that was what ministry was always like! But, unfortunately, that is only a small part in this life calling that we call "the ministry". It seems like every time you are on a ministry high, as I was after sharing the Word, the enemy will do every thing he can do to "unplug" your drain you of the peace, joy, and spiritual strength and energy that is such a threat to him and his dark kingdom. This week I felt incessantly pecked at and provoked by him. Each day came with a new problem... news of someone hurting, someone sick, someone disgruntled, someone stumbling. Like David in the book of Psalm, I began to wish for a way to fly away and be at rest! I called a trusted friend and told her of my plan to resign and run away from the call of God and from the whole human race in general.

Tomorrow is Sunday. I'm still here, and though in my imagination, I may have escaped for a moment or two to an imaginary dream home by the sea, tomorrow I will wake up in my same bed, in my same home and go to church. There I will see the face of that hurting one, that sick one, that lonely one, possibly even that disgruntled one...and I will hug them and love them and encourage them, leaning heavily, not on anything within myself, but on the Spirit of God. I will walk through another Sunday and another week...trusting in the One who alone can restore my joy, Who is my peace, and Who is my strength. Note to self: watch carefully what you teach, for Monday cometh when you may have to live it! My topic last Sunday was: Keep Walking...Your Victory May Be Only A Step Away.