There are these times throughout our life where we have to go outside of our comfort zone, outside of what we would “normally” do and stretch to new heights, beyond what we ever thought we would or even could do. This is where we hopefully mature. “Maturity begins to grow when you can sense your concern for others outweighing your concern for yourself.” John MacNaughton
These are stretching moments, and I’m in one.
This moment is really becoming years in the making, but my stretching is coming in the form of learning to be an “out-front” person, which is something this “behind the scenes” girl doesn’t naturally look for. When we were called to small-town, small-church ministry, I never figured I’d be singing a duet on stage, or leading up the entire children’s ministry dept, creating a mom’s group, or even living in a parsonage, but that is exactly what I’m doing. Not only that, but every week it seems I’m put in a position where I have to decide, “Am I going to let my insecurity take the wheel, or be stretched and love others instead?” I see it from experience now that people WILL be ministered to if I let Jesus work through me, in all of my inadequacies and shortcomings, so that his power is what is seen rather than my own. So, if I don’t hit the notes perfectly, or if the children don’t think it was the best Sunday school lesson ever, or if the loaf of bread I baked for my elderly neighbor didn’t rise perfectly, it’s ok. The people appreciated that I shared a song that was on my heart, the kids learned from God’s Word and saw a teacher who is passionate about Him, and my neighbor is simply thankful that I care about her. This is my stretching. And through it I’m learning that all those who follow Jesus should be “out front” people, even the quiet ones like me. “For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline.” 2 Tim 1:7
My naturally “out front” pastor hubby is stretching too.
Today, he sang a song in church, accompanied by himself on the piano. What’s cool is that he didn’t know how to play just a couple months ago, and now – thanks to an app on his iPhone – he is able to take a song and play it with chords. It was great!
Here’s to becoming stretchier 🙂