Monday, March 26, 2012

Called, Equipped, and Ready to Serve

Yeah, right. When does that ever happen? It isn’t often that we feel called, equipped, and ready to serve all at the same time. The “stars” rarely align our desire, abilities, and free time. Even if you feel called, you may wonder when you’ll ever be able to fit one more thing into your already busy life. Perhaps you might have some spare time but be scared stiff  because you lack the knowledge of how to actually accomplish what you hear God asking.

It is important that we don’t rely solely on ourselves or our calendars to make the decisions as to how, who, what, where, and when we will serve. Of course personal discernment is a helpful tool in figuring out how best to love others. God gives each one of us specific passions and insight for particular types of ministry. It’s valuable to take a good hard look at our schedules and make healthy choices.

But I often wonder how many times we wait, dismiss, or don’t even investigate the possibility of service because we don’t feel called, equipped, and ready to serve all at once? At the risk of pushing ourselves beyond what is comfortable, we say “no.”  Sometimes “no” is absolutely right. At other times I think it hinders the work that God wants us to do in the world, our city, our church, our home, and in us. I’ve seen that what matters most in a great volunteer, parent, or spouse is a willing heart and an attitude of obedience to Christ.

Much of what I am called, equipped, and ready to do at NFC is encouraging people to try something outside of their comfort zone. I admit it...this ministry gets lonely and frustrating sometimes. Just because I am called, equipped, and ready to do the work doesn’t mean I always get it right.

I also have the sheer pleasure of watching what happens when people say “yes.” It’s in the “yes” that VBS, Girls and Boys Camp, Women’s Bible Fellowship, Tilikum day camp, Sunday school, Godly Play, K-2 and 3:4-5 Fun Night, 3M, and parenting small groups happen. It’s in the “yes” that you will have the honor and privilege of seeing God at work in the lives of those you serve. It’s in the “yes” that you will find God calling and equipping you. Choosing to be outside of the comfort zone is a sacrificial gift we give to others, ourselves, and most importantly to Christ. The benefits are eternal.

This service that you perform is not only supplying the needs of the Lord’s people but it is also overflowing in many expressions of thanks to God. 2 Corinthians 9:12

March 2012 - From the Children and Families Newsletter that I put together each month. Not a typical blog post, but since my work/ministry is a big part of my life, I think it makes sense to include it here. I worked a long time on it...making sure this article said what I wanted in a way that spoke hope not condemnation, the truth without whining, conviction not guilt. 

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