Keep calm and carry on

Nothing like God calling you to action to leave you feeling scared and inadequate right?

He’s put Charlie in charge of some incredible kids here and let me play a role as well.  And with that awesome blessing comes the terrifying realization that we have an influence on them – we’re responsible for them to the extent that the Lord allows.  Not only has He called us to these youth, but He’s putting big ideas in our hearts for new outreaches.  He’s giving us a love for people across the tracks that we haven’t even met yet and telling us to do something about it.  The rubber has met the road so to speak.

That realization has led to another – I am so inadequate for this!  Who am I, Lord?  Surely there are people who have more to offer You and can be more effective.

Then, the other morning, I finished reading Colossians and came across a verse I don’t remember reading before:

“And say to Archippus, “Be sure to carry out the ministry the Lord gave you.” Colossians 4:17

Among all his usual “goodbye” narrative, why did Paul include this pointed, personal encouragement?  What was going on with Archippus that he needed to be reminded to do what the Lord gave him to do?

Maybe because what the Lord gave him to do scared him and made him feel inadequate?  Maybe because it’s hard?

If that’s the case, then Archippus may have also needed the reminder that God doesn’t call us to control our ministries – just to carry them out.  We are only in charge of being willing to take the next step.  He is in charge of guiding us, equipping us and producing the results He desires.

The thing is though, Satan hates people who have decided to carry out the ministry the Lord gives them.  John 10:10 says that Satan comes to “steal, kill and destroy.”

As we’ve started working with the youth and looking at how to begin some new outreach projects, I’ve felt Satan trying to steal our peace, kill our hope, and destroy our vision.  Luckily, Charlie is a wonderful leader for our family and can almost instantly identify when the enemy is working on us and redirect our focus to the Lord.

Another thing to consider is that the Lord gives us all a ministry – the Bible is nothing if not God’s will for our lives laid bare.   The fact that Charlie is a paid youth minister is not what puts him in full time ministry – we are all full time ministers simply because we have the Holy Spirit living in us and desiring to minister through us.

I may sometimes feel overwhelmed at the depth of responsibility that the Lord has given us.  Sometimes Satan tempts me to feel too inadequate to carry it out.  But God doesn’t call me to seek His will and then stop.  He calls me to seek His will and carry it out.  Just because Satan lurks around the corner doesn’t mean I can’t fight him off and carry on.

Sure it’s hard sometimes.  That’s why Paul knew Archippus needed a little encouraging nudge to do the thing God called him to do.

Consider this our collective, loving nudge.

IMG_3073(This message brought to you by my family’s beach week in South Carolina, which I’m missing like crazy at this very moment!)

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