You are not called to do it all!

Watch for the very profound, simple little verse in the middle of 1 Corinthians 12:14-31.
I’ve repeated it in several translations so you’ll get the bigger picture.

14 For in fact the body is not one member but many.15 If the foot should say, “Because I am not a hand, I am not of the body,” is it therefore not of the body? 16 And if the ear should say, “Because I am not an eye, I am not of the body,” is it therefore not of the body? 17 If the whole body were an eye, where would be the hearing? If the whole were hearing, where would be the smelling? 18 But now God has set the members, each one of them, in the body just as He pleased.

19 And if they were all one member, where would the body be?

19 But I also want you to think about how this keeps your significance from getting blown up into self-importance. For no matter how significant you are, it is only because of what you are a part of. An enormous eye or a gigantic hand wouldn’t be a body, but a monster. (Message)

19 How strange a body would be if it had only one part! (NLT)

20 But now indeed there are many members, yet one body.21 And the eye cannot say to the hand, “I have no need of you”; nor again the head to the feet, “I have no need of you.” 22 No, much rather, those members of the body which seem to be weaker are necessary. 23 And those members of the body which we think to be less honorable, on these we bestow greater honor; and our unpresentable parts have greater modesty,24 but our presentable parts have no need. But God composed the body, having given greater honor to that part which lacks it,25 that there should be no schism in the body, but that the members should have the same care for one another. 26 And if one member suffers, all the members suffer with it; or if one member is honored, all the members rejoice with it.27 Now you are the body of Christ, and members individually.28 And God has appointed these in the church: first apostles, second prophets, third teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, administrations, varieties of tongues. 29 Are all apostles? Are all prophets? Are all teachers? Are all workers of miracles? 30 Do all have gifts of healings? Do all speak with tongues? Do all interpret? 31 But earnestly desire the best gifts. And yet I show you a more excellent way.

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When you take on more than what God has designed you to accomplish, you create a lopsided ugly monster that is apart from the body of Christ. You need to prayerfully consider, what part of the body, what gifts he has given to you, and become grounded in that knowledge. It is impossible for an ear to see, and a nose to walk, so take comfort in knowing that if others in the body of Christ are not contributing their part, God does not expect you to morph into the entire body, he didn’t design it that way, he doesn’t want you to do it all.

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Living in the Land of Good Intentions

Broken piles of bricksGood intentions are just that, good intentions. While the intent behind them may be good, they have the ability to do an amazing amount of damage to your character if you’re not careful with them.

Take a look at Luke 14:28-30

“But don’t begin until you count the cost. For who would begin construction of a building without first calculating the cost to see if there is enough money to finish it? Otherwise, you might complete only the foundation before running out of money, and then everyone would laugh at you. They would say, `There’s the person who started that building and couldn’t afford to finish it!’

When we verbalize our good intentions to others but don’t follow through, we make a mockery of ourselves. We lose face, we lose favor, we lose trust.

It doesn’t matter if your good intention is taking someone to coffee, or launching a bold new campaign, before you verbalize it, you need to commit to it. Plan it out, calendar it in, gather support, protect it at all costs and stick with it til the end.

If you can’t commit to it, can’t follow through with it, then don’t communicate it.

“Salt is good for seasoning. But if it loses its flavor, how do you make it salty again? Flavorless salt is good neither for the soil nor for the manure pile. It is thrown away.” – Luke 34-35

A Nervous Choreographer

I feel like one of the choreographers on “So You Think You Can Dance.”

As the Designer of Children’s Outreach and Special Events I just finished the week spearheading our largest outreach event of year. This past week we hosted 1300 kids on campus and 450 volunteers for our annual Summer Blast (VBS) week of fun.

It was an amazing week, but like any event had it’s ups and downs, some brilliant moments and yes, many glitches.

I just finished sending an e-mail to all the parents and all the volunteers asking for their feedback. What they liked, disliked, their ideas and suggestions. It’s almost like getting voted on. Do you love it, or do you not.

Crazy thing is, I really want to know what they think. I want the specifics. I can only improve our event when I have an opportunity to see it through other’s peoples eyes and experiences.

I’m sure some of the feedback will bring much joy, and some much frustration, but each piece is important and I’m ready for honesty.

Bring it all on, I’m ready to hit the ground running for next year.

My husband ticked me off today!

It’s my day off and I had plans to go walking in Wright’s field today. Robert, my husband, asked if he could come along, so I jokingly said “If you can keep up.”

I like Wrights field because it has rolling hills that provide just enough resistance to get my heart rate just high enough to burn some calories and fat. I can go as fast or as slow as I like and do some thinking at the same time. It’s great.

At 8:30 we hopped in the truck to take our youngest to school and go on our walk. As we pulled into parking lot to drop Brendan off, my husband pointed at an old access road leading up the side of the canyon and asked, “You wanna walk there?”. 

“Sure.” I’m always game for something new. Or so I thought.

Our truck is at the bottom of this trail
Our truck is at the bottom of this trail

 

So we drove across the street and parked in a little field at the bottom of the access road. I grabbed a water bottle and started my nifty heart monitor watch. It tracks my heart rate, calories burned, time exercising, time in the zone and time of day.

We started up the hill, and after about 50 feet, my heart rate was already at 140. I looked up the access road which just led up, and up and up, and said to him quite crossly, “Are you kidding me?”

I thought to myself, “This is really, really lame. Why did I let Robert hijack my morning plans?  This is going to be hard. Really hard!” I was so angry.

There went my plans for a nice, comfortable, effective morning walk. But I’m stubborn and not a quitter, so up the hill I kept trekking.

At some points this hill must climb at a 40% angle. It was steep, really, really steep. There were no areas to catch your breath, no flat spots to make it a little easier. It was ALL up hill.

My heart rate was topping 175 and my husbands a mere 100. 

His encouragement would just make me more angry. I didn’t want to be pushed to work harder or get more fit. I wanted to do it at my pace.

But about 3/4 of the way up the trail,  God started speaking to me.

Overlooking El Capitan lake.
Overlooking El Capitan lake.

“Katie,” he said, “Isn’t this what life should be like. If you stay comfortable and move at your pace, you won’t grow very fast. If at all.”

“Ugghhh!” Why is God always right?.

His little nudge changed my whole take on the hike. If I look at this as a challenge, and opportunity to grow, then maybe it’s not so bad after all.

So I continued, only now my heart was in it and I was actually enjoying it. We made it to the top in about 35 minutes. Wow, what a view!

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Isn’t that what life is like?
Like what ministry work is like?

We don’t always like being challenged, or stretched, but it’s good for us. And once we get to the end, our perspective it totally different. It makes all the hard work worth the effort. It’s so rewarding.

I’m thankful I have a spouse who doesn’t let me sit idle, who challenges me to grow, and pushes me when I need it.

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I can do everything through him who gives me strength.

Philippians 4:13