stepping out

This afternoon I was chatting with my 11-year-old and she asked what I was doing for so long on my computer. I said I was scheduling for Kids (our children’s program at church) and she said, “Well, mom, I am free!” I smiled as she offers to serve, and usually does, every single weekend. After letting her know that the challenge is in finding adults, she looked at me quite perplexed, and stated she didn’t understand why that would be an issue.

Jesus said, “I assure you and most solemnly say to you, unless you repent [that is, change your inner self – your old way of thinking, live changed lives] and become like children [trusting, humble, and forgiving], you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.” Matthew 18:3
Now hear my heart – there is now NO condemnation found in Christ Jesus, and yet, I would submit to you that those things that you long for might just be directly tied to the capacity at which you give – of your time, your resources, your motivations.
Your WHY.
You see, I also work, until recently full time outside of the house, and 7 days a week managing a household of people. My people also work hard in school and with chores after. And, we joyfully (mostly!) choose to attend 2 services a week, every week, all year long, even when tired, or sick, and even burned out sometimes, because at the end of the day, we love and appreciate the value of being a vital part of a community of people who put all things aside for the sake of…
…creating a safe and loving environment for people to worship, and rest…
…setting the stage for those who are seeking to find Jesus…hope…restoration…peace…healing…
…putting the goal of serving others and bringing joy into people’s understanding of a life in Christ…
…allowing our fellow team members to also flourish, feel supported and know we are all in this together…
…remembering that in the end, nothing else matters, outside of the love we share with those who don’t yet know…
our Savior.
You see, when we know our WHY, it changes how we do everything. I am grateful that Jesus allows us to choose whether or not we bring sacrifice. (That wasn’t always so.) I am blessed beyond measure by those who pour into our house (church) week in and week out. I am humbled and honored to set aside time to lighten the load for those, whose love shown to me, has radically changed my life, and highly motivated to bring to others the same freedom I have been graced with.
Church, parenting, marriage, relationship with Christ…all these things are not meant merely for our pleasure and “filling up,” but rather they are training grounds and environments in which to grow and learn, seek Him more deeply, and then to spill out into the world with His love. When we seek only to receive from these relationships, we will always be disappointed as they are not designed for such usage. It is only in the commitment to pour out into others out of sincere love and servitude that we find we ourselves are then filled. It is only from such a posture, that we find the answers to our questions, our concerns, our hopes and our identity. Until we find our WHY, and align our values with it, we will never find our fulfillment.
“The generous man shall be prosperous and enriched, And he who waters will himself also be watered [reaping the generosity he has sown].” – Proverbs 11:25
If you aren’t serving, do it! Not feeling uncomfortable anymore? Serve somewhere that makes you nervous (and rely on God!). Feeling burned out? Find your why. Only God can fill your empty spaces, and only in the stepping out can He step in…
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