I grew up within the context of the Church; I was surrounded by pastors, teachers, and mentors who continually spoke of going out into the world to tell others about Christ. I heard from missionaries and fellow classmates who went overseas to share the Gospel or participate in work-related projects. Although I knew it was important to share the message of the Gospel, I never felt led to explore missions opportunities, particularly overseas.
The idea of going on a mission trip outside of the country was beyond my comfort level. I knew with certainly that people were called to overseas missions, but I was not that person. The closest thing to a mission trip for me was a work trip to Missouri when I was in high school youth group.
Like I said above, I believed other people were called to missions, but I didn’t feel that was my calling in life. I wasn’t opposed to missionary work; I just didn’t feel I was gifted in that area. It didn’t help that I also felt largely uncomfortable when I thought about leaving the common, everyday routine of my small, Midwest town.
Just this week, Pastor Tim spoke of being sent or called to do something in this life. I immediately thought of Paul, the writer of Galatians, and how he was called to travel the world and spread the Gospel. He preached and wrote letters to area churches with such passion and vibrancy that there was no doubt he was gifted and called to participate in missions.
Pastor Tim asked each one of us to consider where we might be called to minister. Now, once more, I realized that I probably wasn’t going to jump into overseas missionary work, but I immediately recognized that I definitely feel God’s call to minister within the local church. God has given me a gift for music, and I have done my best to use my voice and skill to lead others in worship. It took me awhile to realize this passion and gifting in my life, but now there is no denying why God has placed me here on this earth, especially during this season.
I suppose I could just close this post with the obvious statement: I am called to do music; in all actuality, I could just leave it at that. But the truth is, I am conflicted. I don’t believe God has called me, or even you for that matter, to just one task or purpose in this life. I believe my other calling is to minister to the disability community. Although YLF is not a Christian organization, I felt a distinct clarity as I directed the forum this summer. It just felt “right,” and I could discern God’s presence in everything as I went about the week’s activities.
In the coming weeks, I will be exploring a new venture as I participate in Joni & Friends Family Retreat. I am looking forward to ministering to and working with people and families who have been affected by disability with a Christian context. Don’t get me wrong; I love working with YLF, but I am extremely excited to weave my passion for the disability community into my work at Retreat. I am eager to share my love for God and music with the attendees there, and I truly believe God has called me to seek out this venture.
So as I sign off, I ask you to consider where God might be calling you during this season of your life. Explore ways in which you can utilize your gifts, talents, and passions to serve Him and better the lives of others. I am praying you can find fulfillment and peace as you go about doing His work.