I’ve been thinking, I mean really thinking… thinking about myself, my life, what I have to offer and what I have to give. On my last post I was told that I had no clear vision, I both agree and disagree. Actually God gave me my vision this year, something very simple yet so deeply profound to me that it almost takes my breath away. It’s not just a vision for me but a vision for all of God’s children which is about entering into His Peaceful rest (Shabbat Shalom).
God has created a place of rest and peace for us all
I am taken back to the recent article that I wrote on being On-Purpose, and I ask myself am I being ‘On-purpose’ with my moments of being? I have come to a few realisations:
Just because I can, it doesn’t mean I should – I feel best when I’m busy, so I try to make myself busy with ‘good things’ such as trying to help others. But in my busyness I take myself out of my God-given purpose, I use my time the way that I think it should be used and not the way in which God wants me to use it – bad move.
I’ve been spreading myself too thinly – it’s hard to be everything to everyone and if I’m honest with myself and God that’s what I’ve been trying to do. I do thank Paula Millar for making me think as she has put it, it has been affective in doing that – so if you want someone who will challange you and make you think try Paula. I am not a fountain of knowledge, the only knowledge I have is the knowledge that God has given me to fulfill my calling and destiny. My energy is best served focusing on the tasks that are most relevant to this.
It’s OK to have times of stillness and quietness – notice how I say stillness and quietness. For those of you who know me from my other blog, you know that God has been taking me through a lot of healing body, soul and spirit. Everyday I learn new areas that God wants to make whole. He is making me more self-aware and although a very painful process absolutely necessary for the work He has called me to do which is to help those who are broken enter into His Shabbat Shalom. Ironically, I like to be busy because it keeps my mind from uncovering old wounds, like a defense mechanism I guess but it is counter-productive. My challange is to allow myself to rest (be still and be quiet) so that not only can the ground that I will work be prepared but so that I will be too. Stillness is about not moving, not pushing, not working and not striving and quietness is about gentleness, softness and a decreased pace in our work. I have a recent testimony on this that I would like to share, go to the end for the link.
It’s OK to change and adapt– I think most people have a fear of change, it makes us uncomfortable because we feel lost at sea and it makes others feel uncomfrtable because it makes us more unpredictable in their eyes. But actually change and adapting to change is necessary, because we may need to alter our footsteps to find and come once more on the path that God has set out for us and as we grow and walk more in God’s wisdom this will inevitably cause more change in and around us. Staying the same due to fear and complacency is not safer it is dangerous, so godly change is good – read my previous post on godly change.
Have you ever been really excited to go to a talk or a conference about a particular topic, only to get there and find out that the speakers talk about everything else other than what was expected? How did that make you feel? Frustrated, angry, annoyed, like you wasted your time in attending in the first place? Probably all of the above right? But how do you feel when you go to a meeting, conference, event and the speakers you hear are everything that you expected plus a cherry on top? Elated, surprised, invigorated, motivated, encouraged, charged up? Wow, what a contrasting set of emotions with the only difference being that the first set of speakers were ‘off-point’ whilst the second ‘on-point’.
Now think about yourself, your life, your work and ask yourself this question: “am I on or off-point?” How can we even tell whether we are or not? Difficult questions I know but if we imagine ourselves as a speaker or even better still the whole event, what type of lasting impression do we leave on ourselves, on others, on God? Are we wasting valuable time, do we feel frustrated and let down by ourselves our lives or do we feel invigorated and motivated to do and give more?
One of the hardest things when starting off in ministry (this includes business that God has called you to do) is to find people who need what you are offering, I believe that this is why many believers end up frustrated, uncertain, giving up or even compromising. I’ve read quite a few articles which give you ‘strategies’ to get customers etc. but all of these are based on worldly business strategies. Should God’s set-apart ones follow worldly strategies to build a business, charity or social enterprise?
One issue that I have had to face in ministry/business is working out exactly what it is I’m providing, if you read my last post entitled ‘On when to start your ministry’ you will notice that I tried many things which failed because I had no idea what it was that I was actually supposed to be doing. I was looking for that ‘niche’ that would set me apart from others, and so I turned to the Dummies Guide for Business and other such like Business reference books to get ideas on how to find my niche. It was a long process before I found out that I was going about things the wrong way, just because I thought that an idea was great or that I believed people really needed what I had, it didn’t make the idea fool-proof. There is only one thing that guarantees success when doing God’s work (yes, of course God) but actually it’s YOU. Continue reading →
So many of us have a desire and a passion to start in ministry or perform some work or business that glorifies God and I think this is great but… (Yes, you heard it coming) we need more than desire or passion to right a wrong or to help/encourage others if we want the ministry to be effective and successful. The success of a ministry is not built on how worthwhile we believe something is or how much work we are willing to put in to make it bear fruit, a truly successful and effective ministry is the result of being in step with and in submission to God’s will 101% of the way.
I once heard it said that any injustice/need which caused a passion to be stirred within you was your life’s calling…. yes and no. I’ve had enough failures in ministry and business to know that this is an over-simplified equation. From my late teenage years into early adulthood I had a strong desire to help and encourage black ethnic minority youths from disadvantaged backgrounds, a lot of my work experience focused on mentoring, encouraging and supporting youth. My passion to right the wrongs and to turn the tide of the negative environmental influences on their life stemmed from what I had seen and experienced in my own life, that of siblings and others around me. The passion was great, the vision was honourable but it wasn’t what God had called me to do. Continue reading →