Last weekend I experienced one of the greatest events in my ministry history. Not that I really had a whole lot of ministry events to compare it to, or that my ministry history has been all that exciting or extensive. But still…it. was. AMAZING!
I attended an international children’s leaders training conference that quite frankly I was not completely prepared for. What I was prepared for was light-hearted teaching sessions, possible networking opportunities, and hopefully some good ideas to come back home with. What I actually got was empowering training sessions, new and re-kindled friendships, and a new vision! I was wrapped in the sweet presence of the Holy Spirit and for the first time since I (reluctantly) stepped into the role of our church Children’s Leader I felt like I was being equipped to actually be a Children’s Minister! And anyone who knows me knows I do NOT claim to be nor do I have any desire to be a “preacher” and the word “minister” kind of makes me cringe.
So many words spoke so loud and clear to my soul through these 3 days and 2 nights of intense God time. I FINALLY heard God’s voice speaking to me about my current role in ministry. I heard that I am where I am supposed to be. I am doing what I am supposed to be doing. And I was NOT doing all I COULD be doing! So many times I felt inferior. I didn’t feel prepared or equipped for the “job.” But when I finally gave in and told God I wanted Him to take over I realized I really wasn’t prepared or equipped because it wasn’t a job, it was a call. A call to step out, step forward, and step up. I have been cowering (or trying to cower at least) into the background and God was calling me out on it! So, I took an initiative to attend this conference so that I could finally begin to prepare and equip myself through resources and people who were already available, willing, and able to provide it! God was dangling it right in front of my face…all I had to do was grab ahold of it.
One thing that spoke so clearly to me was something Bro Tony said about the calling of a Children’s Ministers. Children’s Ministry is NOT a stepping stone ministry! It’s not the first step to become a Youth Pastor, and it’s not a bridge to become a Pastor of your own church. Children’s Ministry is a calling all to it’s own. It is a unique, specific calling and ministry, and those called into it are unique and purposed for it.
I have been feeling for quite some time that I am being called out of my comfort zone. I have been feeling the nudges toward the edge. I have been given opportunities to step out and have been faced with situations that have challenged my comfort level. You can’t grow if you don’t give yourself room. You won’t build strength without pushing through that uncomfortable burn. And you can’t go beyond the limits without breaking through the barriers. Well, I want to grow. I want to become stronger. And I am ready to set my sights beyond because with God there are NO LIMITS!