A Reminder About My Calling…from 7 Years Ago.

7 04 2011

Sometimes being in ministry gives me a feeling like I’m pounding my head into a brick wall continually.

It reminds me of this weird habit my little brother had, when he was a toddler–he’d bang his head against a hard surface repeatedly, trying to get attention. I mean, it worked. Every person in the room rushed to save this poor deranged child who was bent on smashing his tiny little head into the wall.

He’s fine now. Don’t worry. He even started talking when he was ten.

I’m kidding. I only tease because I talked plenty for both of us, as we were growing up. That kid didn’t have to ask for a single ketchup packet from a McDonald’s employee as long as I was around.

You know, I take it back.

It’s not just ministry that gives me that feeling. It’s life in general that makes me feel that way.

Sometimes it seems like every single day can be a struggle. We battle irritations, frustrations, changes, discontent, resentment, readjustment, and a whole host of other emotions on a regular basis.

However, I experienced a moment this last weekend that reminded me of something important–something I’m quick to forget, in the hectic chaos of my job.

God reminded me why I went into the ministry in the first place.

I helped take a group of adults and middle school and high school students to a large Christian concert on Friday night, an event called Winterjam. This was the second time I’d been to this particular concert, and even though I knew the adults would all be holding down comfortable seats in the stands, I was determined to spend this year’s concert down on the floor.

Why did I feel so strongly about standing for five hours straight? I don’t know. I think I’ve just been hankering for a good concert for a while, and my old bones don’t often get the chance anymore to get rattled from insanely loud subwoofers.

I know. Sometimes I forget that I’m an adult.

Our kids rocking out to KJ52's raps at the concert...

Anyway, after getting chased away from the main stage by security, we settled on standing halfway back in the auditorium, right next to the speakers’ stage. We got to talk to Tony Nolan and KJ52, and were just out of the camera’s reach when they filmed all the speakers who came up on the stage. It was awesome.

But what was even more incredible was watching the kids I was with, and realizing through silent observation what God had been doing in them.

In one particular moment, while Newsboys was singing “Mighty To Save”, I stopped singing and listened to my students singing out behind me. I had tears streaming down my face as I listened to their voices, pure and passionate, mingling together and rising up to God. I thought about each one of them, and how powerfully I’ve personally seen the Holy Spirit working in their lives over the course of the last few years, and I was floored.

The whispers of all the negative emotions that I encounter so often seemed to melt away completely in that moment. And I realized that even the worst days of my job (and life!) can’t change the calling God has given me–that calling to glorify Him in all that I do and to be used by Him in any way He wants.

It’s so easy to lose sight of why I went into this profession when I’m caught up in the busy day-to-day.

And the reasons why I went into it in the first place–this “Director of Christian Education” career that I literally knew nothing about, but knew with certainty that that was what God wanted me to do–didn’t make sense to most of my friends and family.

I certainly had no desire to go into the ministry as I was growing up. I had applied to colleges with the hopes of pursuing totally different career paths. I wasn’t a prim and proper “holy roller” in middle school or high school. I cared about my faith, but our church had a dysfunctional youth ministry and I never really connected with any religious leaders or influences in my life.

But God changed all of my plans and ambitions in one afternoon, and planted this calling in my heart. And over the course of several years, it was affirmed and nurtured. God led me the whole way.

And guess what I happened to be listening to, at the time that God planted this glimpse of my future to me over seven years ago?

Newsboys’ “Mighty To Save”.

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