Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Following that path... you know, that one.

As I have mentioned in the past, I was very involved in the United Church of Canada for a couple of years.  I mean, I grew up in a UC congregation... I did my time in the Children's and Adult Choirs as well as being Sunday school teacher/coordinator over the years since I was 15.  I even began to work as the visual/sound tech person, but starting in January of  2005 I began to learn and grow more in my faith through UCC courses and places.  I took part in a year-long Certificate Program that was supported by the UCC and Naramata Centre to help give Youth Leaders a base in faith and leadership to help them with their Youth Groups.  Soon After that was done, (the same weekend actually..) I took part in a community living program in January 2006 held by the Naramata Centre, which was more a self-learning... but there was a faith-base due to where we were living.  Then that summer of 2006 I was on staff at Naramata Centre as a youth and children staff member.  When I returned to my little UCC congregation I began to help plan the theme and music of the church services, as well as being a member of the "governing" body and continuing tech support as well as trying to start a Youth Group (no go there....)  This continued until the beginning of 2008 when my impending marriage and schooling and to be honest, a feeling of hurt and confusion made me rethink my involvement in the UCC.

So now that you have a bit of my church-life resume... 

After returning home from Summer Staff at Naramata, my minister who I worked closely with believed that I had the gift to work in the church.  And while I enjoyed the job I had at the church and enjoyed the learning and growing I was doing there was a part of me that thought she was a little bit nutty. (But in a totally lovable way ;P )  And so with life continuing to simply move forward with no regard to my feelings of insecurity and fear, I went to school.

I have finished my course in Dental Office Reception, I was on the Dean's Honor roll both terms, and actually really enjoyed learning new things.  The reason for beginning school was to give me the tools to have a "stable" and "grown up" career so that my husband and I could start a family within the next few years.  But even before I finished the course, I admit to feeling a bit like this was not actually the job for me.  Don't get me wrong, I could do the job, and be quite good at it I think... but there was something missing...

I have been feeling bad lately for not having a job 3 months after graduating and returning from our anniversary trip to Disneyland....  Part of me is angry that I won't even be given a chance to show my ability to do the job, while part of me takes this as a sign that I am not meant to continue in that field... but what?

My mother and I have monthly lunches with our minister, who happens to have become a very good friend over the years, and she has talked to me (just planting seeds) about my "gift" of speaking the word... of my "gift" of leadership in worship...  And while it brings to mind conversations we had in those months after Naramata, something has changed in my heart to make it also different.  The saying "absence makes the heart grow fonder" may be in effect or perhaps the changes over the last year and the growing up I might have done in that time have changed my outlook.  You see, I always thought that only other people get to work at a job that is also what they are passionate about.  I figured that whatever involvement in the church, or in any faith community I would have would be in spare time while I worked a "regular" job.

But this friend and I have been talking about the possibility that I am good at/passionate about worship leadership and faith because that is what God is calling me to do.  So I am starting to think a little differently... I don't know what this looks like as a big picture, or have any idea what I am doing... and while that scares the crap out of me... I am also totally excited.  There is a rightness in this that is frightening.  Over the last months I have been feeling like an unproductive, and useless individual, with no idea what it is that I should/would/could or want to be doing.  But in the last week, I have been feeling less like that, and more like there is a bigger purpose.  That I just need to surrender the fear and plans and wonderings to God and He will reveal to me what His work for me is.  I have never been this purposeful in my faith... it has been something that was important, but also a side bet.  I prayed and listened for God... but only when it suited my plan, my time, my stuff.  So I feel a little out of my league... while at the same time, trust that God will give me the strength and the answers I am meant to have.  This may not be what I had in mind even one year ago... but there is a rightness to it all that tells me it has been what God had in mind the whole time.  He was just waiting for me to listen up.

So here I am, listening.  Speak to me Lord.  Let me know what it is you plan for me.  Or, at least show me the next step, so I might fulfill this plan you have for me.  And give me the strength and the courage to make it through.

So while I don't really know what I am doing, and there is residual guilt for not contributing financially to my little household, I still feel like I am headed in the right direction.  The work I have to do now, is to spend purposeful time with God.  Open my heart and mind to every possibility, and keep my ears and eyes open.  While thanking God everyday for the support of my Husband, my Family, and my good friend who helps me to learn what possibilities there are.  And to Jesus, who walks every day with me as I learn more about my place in this faith journey.

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