Ordinary People

“God absolutely loves to take ordinary people and do extraordinary things in them, through them, and with them” (Lysa Terkheurst).

In the fall of 2010, I was required to give a sermon at my home church in order to fulfill an assignment for a Biblical preaching class.  Naturally, I was nervous about standing in front of the congregation and sharing the Word of God with an audience for the first time.  But even more, I was nervous about choosing a Scripture that I could use for the message.  I wanted something that could speak to my heart and could easily identify with the congregation as well.

I spent one morning in Pastor Tim’s office, vacillating between topic and Scripture ideas, and I felt like I was getting nowhere.  Pastor asked me questions like: “What passage has been speaking to you lately?  What has God been teaching you in your personal walk with Him?  Is there any topic that strikes you and makes you want to dig deeper?”  Numerous thoughts and concepts swirled through my mind, but I couldn’t pick just one focus. 

Finally, Pastor said something that sparked interest.  “Is there a person in the Bible— someone that you can identify with or view highly?”  I thought about that for a moment, and that’s when I started to contemplate that idea.  For so long, I have been drawn to the art of storytelling.  After writing four novels and working on some personal memoirs, it has become clear to me that I love a good story, and even more, I love writing or telling it.

As I walked home from my meeting with Pastor that morning, I was no closer to finding a sermon topic, but my mind was spinning nonetheless.  I thought about the many characters in the Bible— most of them ordinary people that God chose to use in extraordinary ways. 

It was then that I compared myself to many of these Biblical people.  Although I did not consider myself to be worthy of God’s calling, He had called me out nonetheless to serve Him through my music and writing.  I was about midway through my time in the Masters’ program, and it was clear to me that God was using me in capacities that I could only dream of if I were to pursue such activities on my own.  I had waited for Him to direct me in His time, and He had been faithful. 

I couldn’t help but think of the story from Esther 4 and Mordecai’s realization that God may have brought her into position in the kingdom for such a time as this.  It was like a light bulb went off in my head and I knew this was the text I must share with the congregation.  But this idea was only the beginning for me.  I thought of the many others in the Bible that stepped up and took action when it mattered the most— when they knew the call of God on their lives.  What if I could create a series based on ordinary Biblical people and the moments that defined their service to Him?

So today begins a blog series in “Cassie Contemplates…”  I call it: “Ordinary People: Defining Moments.”  Stay tuned to read the stories of well-loved Biblical characters and catch a glimpse into their personal struggles and victories.  I will share these moments from their lives through first person narrative so you can see what each person must have felt like as he or she witnessed this defining moment.  I can’t wait to share with you!  Be looking for the first installment next week! 

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