Have you ever had an overwhelming feeling that God was preparing you for something big; you just didn't know what it was? Maybe a part of you was excited at the possibility of something new, but, at the same time, a part of you was terrified of the sacrifice that might be required of you? This fear of the inevitable unknown. This call to abandon mundane, lukewarm living for something greater and more powerful. We all know that God doesn't save us so we can just sit around and bask in blessings. We are called to serve, to teach, to make disciples.
In Matthew 4, when Jesus called His disciples, they left everything and followed Him. This was not a following in name only; this was a complete lifestyle change, one for which they would be persecuted.
And we read and think of the felt board Sunday school stories that keep us comfortably in this idea of Christianity that we've created for ourselves, all the while missing the real point that our salvation is for God's glory. Only.
This path is the one on which I have found my feet lately. This path of change and growth and faith. God has been cleaning house for months, and I knew something was coming. I remembering praying months ago that He would reveal the plan for me, that I would know what step was next. And I admit that if I'd had my way, I would have been given the news much sooner, but, of course, God's timing is never my timing.
So I've waited while He's worked.
"And the vessel he was making of clay was spoiled in the potter's hand, and he reworked it into another vessel, as it seemed good to the potter to do." (Jeremiah 18:4 ESV)
He's stripped me of friendships that I clung to so desperately.
He's stripped me of selfish pride and the need to always win.
He's stripped me of my incessant need to please others.
He's stripped me of time-wasters and tv addictions.
And I've fought Him the whole way!
But isn't it in the struggle that we are made new?
"Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it spring forth, do you not perceive it? (Isaiah 43:19 ESV)
Though I have far to go, I now know what He has been preparing me for. My Redeemer knew my next step, but He knew that I was, in no way, ready for it six months ago. He knew what needed to be taken away and what needed to be added so that I could be ready and willing to follow Him fully.
God has called me to do something for which I am perfectly bent, yet it's something I never thought I could actually do! But here I am, about to embark on the journey into youth ministry at our new campus, and I can see now that He's been molding and shaping me for awhile. At this point, I have no idea where it will lead. Maybe it's just another stepping stone to something even bigger. Maybe this IS the big thing! But in the midst of all the maybes, there is complete peace in falling off the felt board and embracing real life!