And if you know me at all, then you know I hardly ever find gatherings with large groups of women - well, beautiful. I find large groups of women awkward and uncomfortable (and that may just be me - but nonetheless). I don't easily get emotional (although as I am approaching 30 I have noticed my superhuman emotional control is fading - I ugly cried when this came on the other night), I LOVE sarcasm, and I appreciate a good immature joke (one you may find in Anchorman, Tommy Boy or Talladega Nights). I don't say things like, "precious and bless her heart." And, if I can conjurer up any reason not to blow dry my hair, then I don't. But it was a weekend away with one of my best friends, and the oppurtunity to hear some of the greatest Christian orators of our time - so I was still excited. But I honestly, never expected God to move the way He did this weekend.
I went into this weekend, in a place of frustration and entrapment. For the last year, I prayed everyday, "Ok, Lord, I will do whatever you ask me to do. Anything. Seriously, I'm your girl! Africa? I'm there. Sell everything I own and house homeless families? You got it! (Not really sure how those last 2 would work together, but it doesn't matter because He is God and can work it out.) Just tell me what You want me to do." And day after day, nothing.
So I started doing, because I didn't know what else to do. God wasn't telling me anything, and I knew too much to do nothing. So I took the approach of fake it til you make it! And, y'all God still worked in that. In the last year, Chad and I have thrown ourselves into the world of adoption, human trafficking and child sponsorship. But the whole time, I was just waiting, waiting for a burning bush experience - hoping that surely I am going to try something and then it will just be clear. Just like that, I will know. But. that. has. not. happened.
And then on Friday night Christine Caine (if you don't know Christine Caine, stop your life and click here) stood up and BROUGHT IT! No she didn't speak - which is what we like to say when women teach from the Bible because heaven forbid a woman do what Christine did on Friday night - she preached. And it was motivating and convicting all at the same time. There were 2 things she said that the Holy Spirit used to cut me to the core.
- She told us to stop looking for or trying to be the next Beth Moore or Jen Hatmaker or Joyce Meyers or whoever or whatever you wish you were. See we don't need a next (insert), God needs YOU! And He needs YOU to do you part of the story, live YOUR part of the calling. Then she said this, "Not all of you are suppose to put together a conference or speak on a stage. Some of you are suppose to be come along side and help, support, just be obedient to whatever HE called you to do!" Well, that sounds great, right? Like Amen, Christine! Like we hear what you are saying! But you know what I thought, "Please God, don't ask me to do that. I already told you I will do anything, so please don't ask me to support someone else to do big things. I said, ANYTHING, wouldn't You want to use someone not as willing to do anything as me to do a support role." Listen, I know this isn't pretty. In fact, I was a little sickened by it. But it's honest. And needed to happen, I needed to hear myself think those thoughts. I needed a reality check! Then, Christine said this…
- "Sometimes we aren't getting the vision, we aren't going into the promise land, because we need to just call sin, sin and do some repentance. Do some cutting away. We need to stop being ok with just being delivered and walk in freedom. Even the Israelites were delivered for 40 years, before they walked in the freedom of the promise land, because they were not willing to repent and get right with God." I have never wanted to yell, "STOP TALKING!" to anyone more in my life then I did at Christine Caine on Friday night. Obviously I didn't because well she is Christine Caine and given the chance to talk to her, I am pretty sure I would turn into a blurbing idiot.
Then as if all that was not enough, we were given a list of questions to go through with other women. So, I sat next to one of my best friends and looked her in the eyes and for the first time it became crystal clear why I haven't heard my anything. Because I am too prideful to say to the Lord I will do anything. What I should have been saying is, "I will do anything as long as I don't think it is beneath me. As long as I feel it is big enough to be worthy of me and my time." So, I cried and repented and told the Lord how ashamed I was and how I was sorry I was trying to use Him to be famous or do something "great!" When in reality last time I checked the Bible said, if you cling to your life, you will lose it; but if you give up your life for me, you will find it (Matthew 10:39). Oh yea, and this, But among you it will be different. Whoever wants to be a leader among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first among you must be the slave of everyone else. For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve others and to give his life as a ransom for many (Mark 10:33 - 35).
But the Lord in his graciousness, heard my repentance. And reassured me He heard every time I prayed this last year, but He knew my heart even when I didn't. And He knew I was not ready for my anything. I have some cutting out, repenting, and rewiring to let the Holy Spirit do. That if He would have revealed it all to me a year ago, it would have been damaging - to me, to my family, to my ministry, but ultimately to what God has planned and purposed. So for right now, I am throwing myself in knowing Jesus and the power of his resurrection, because when it does happen I want to be ready. I no longer will let sin be victorious in keeping me from the promised land.