Wednesday, June 22, 2011
I am a list maker. At the beginning of every day I check my to do list for the house and feel so satisfied at the end of the day when it's done. I love to tell Tom what I dusted, swept, taught, etc for the day. He's probably so tired of hearing these details but I like to have someone give me a pat on the back for completing my list. When I was working we had weekly meetings to talk about what we were working on and I LOVED them. A captive audience just to hear what I'd checked off my list???!?!?! That's a dream :)
So the past few months I've been looking and praying for a place to serve. Tom and I had planned on a mission trip and the wheels fell off in every way. It just wasn't going to happen. I tried an inner city mission that several friends run. The bulk of my time there was spent making sure Walker didn't damage something or hurt himself. Nothing was seeming to be a good fit. When I went on the retreat a few weeks ago, I came back feeling that I wasn't supposed to serve in an organized ministry. That my place to serve was right in front of me. With my family and the people that the Lord places in my life. My pride has an issue with this because it would make me feel better if I could put in a certain amount of time each week and be satisfied. But our God is not a check-off-the box God. He's a relational God and wants my sacrifice, which means serving on His terms instead of my own. So I came across this article today and it spoke to where I am right now.
Here's an excerpt:
Christians often feel like the right thing to do is to be ashamed about what we have. We hear that quote of Jim Elliot’s (“He is no fool who gives up that which he cannot keep to gain that which he cannot lose.") and think that we ought to sell our homes and move to some place where they need the gospel.
But I’d like to challenge you to look at it differently. Giving up what you cannot keep does not mean giving up your home, or your job so you can go serve somewhere else. It is giving up yourself. Lay yourself down. Sacrifice yourself here, now. Cheerfully wipe the nose for the fiftieth time today. Make dinner again for the people who don’t like the green beans. Laugh when your plans are thwarted by a vomiting child. Lay yourself down for the people here with you, the people who annoy you, the people who get in your way, the people who take up so much of your time that you can’t read anymore. Rejoice in them. Sacrifice for them. Gain that which you cannot lose in them.
Isn't that a different view? I loved it and wanted to share. The whole thing is good and worth the read. And because I do not want to be misinterpreted, I'm in no way saying spending time serving in a different capacity is wrong. It's not. It's beautiful. But this gave me some freedom to see more value in my days. I have desires to do other things. And they're God-given desires, but this is my place for now. What a blessed place.
For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.