I am excited about what God is doing in my life right now. It’s a time of real challenge and transition for me…I’m expecting a baby, gearing up to watch my first-born start kindergarten and planning for a potential move (but not far…so you aren’t getting rid of me!!!) As I sit amidst swirling transition, it’s funny that I’m not feeling like the anchor is loose. I am leaning hard on the confidence I have in Christ and rather than feeling like it’s all coming undone, I feel just the opposite…like it’s all coming together. The other day a woman I’ve been working with professionally stopped me and said “If you ever wonder whether you have it together, I want you to call me, so that I can tell you that I’ve never seen anything like what you are doing right now!” I laughed (out loud!) but in all seriousness, I shared with the woman that I have no doubt where this peace comes from…it’s incomprehensible for a reason (God designed it that way). I love God so much for knowing that our ability to process would be limited, and for creating a mechanism (His perfect peace) that provides us calm in the midst of the storm.
At Sanctuary we heard good news this week. The Search Committee, after months of faithful service, has chosen a candidate to propose to our congregation to lead our church. I spent some time this week reading David Beck’s blog (he is the candidate…and if you didn’t catch it in the letter the Vision Team sent us this week, he blogs regularly…and it’s really very good: http://tdavidbeck.blogspot.com). As I read through some of his posts I got so excited. I know it’s sort of crazy…but it all fits in my “coming together” feelings right now. I was reading a post that David wrote on leadership, where he reflected on a children’s musical performance and found analogy to Christian leadership…I really liked it:
Although we as Christian leaders are not out to get people to “perform well” in the Christian life, there are analogies here for ministry.
1. The Scriptures set a lofty vision for us – nothing less than “it is not I who live but Christ who lives in me.” It is proper for us to call people to that mountaintop and not settle for the foothills of simply becoming nice or morally upright people.
2. The Christian life is fulfilling. There is nothing better than being a vessel through whom other people are blessed. As John Piper might say, it’s good for us to revel in the enjoyment of living as God intends.
3. We as Christian leaders must walk with people on the journey to allow Christ to live through them. If we are walking with them (and allowing them to walk with us), we will be prevented from walking away from them to go on to “the next thing.” What is needed is relational perseverance – or what is also known as patience and longsuffering, which is the fruit of the Spirit.
Regardless of whether you feel like you are a ‘leader’ right now…I love the idea that God is ready and willing to use you, and that He has called you to great [lofty] things. He wants YOU to be the one to walk with others, to persevere in their journey of faith, step-for-step, walking right alongside them. He’ll provide someone to do the walking WITH YOU as well. [SHAMELESS PLUG FOR OUR WOMEN’S MENTORING PROGRAM: we want to connect you with someone to walk with you, and if you want to mentor others…we want you to join our team!]. Something that I have loved since I first came to Sanctuary was the richness of gifts reflected in our congregation. We are a community of honest people – who for the most part, are willing to live broken before each other and the Lord. We are a community of people who desires to see its broad and deep range of gifts taken and used to impact the world for Christ. Today, as I imagine a little bit what it might be like to welcome David as our pastor if it becomes clear through the final stages of our search process that he is the one God has called to us, I am experiencing in earnest that rush of hope that God’s Word promises will not disappoint us (Romans 5:3-5).
Much love, Laurie