Wednesday, July 30, 2008

God Sent Me a Memo This Morning : )

Last night, I got a phone call from the head of Women's Ministry at church wondering if I would be interested in being a part of a new ministry she was developing. It was a great ministry opportunity, but I had to say no. It was the fifth time this summer alone I've been invited to lead or be a part of ministry opportunities and this was my fifth "no." She was gracious and understanding, but I was discouraged.

I have so much on my plate already...enough that I am having to drop out of many commitments just to be ready for our baby to be born. Three years earlier, I asked God to allow me to minister to women, yet here I was saying no to every opportunity I was given. I went to bed feeling guilty and confused.

My first instinct was to call a friend, but I was reminded of something Zoe Elmore wrote in a devotion I read awhile back. She said, "Run to the throne, not the phone." So I prayed. I knew God was the only one who would "get" what I was feeling. He alone understood my dreams and my guilt. It was a rambling prayer, but I fell asleep with peace.

Then this morning I picked up one of the books I'm reading and came across this quote:

"People will always ask you to do more than God asks. She quotes Alan Redpath, who said, 'Say yes to the burden that God puts on your heart and say no to everything else.' A whole lot of things can wait for a different season in your life or even for just a different time of year."

(From "An Interview With Carol Kent" in For the Write Reason: 31 Writers, Editors, and Agents Share Their Experiences With Christian Publishing edited by Marybeth Whalen.)

I couldn't believe how relevant it was for me right then. It was as if God sent me a personal memo. I was instantly released from the guilt of saying no, and excited to answer this question, "What burden has God put on my heart?"

Here's what I came up with:

- Being a good mom and wife. This is my current season of life, and I have to say no to many things in order to keep Pat and the kids first. After Benjamin is born and our adoption is complete, my home life is going to require even more attention and time. This is my top priority.
- I also reaffirmed my burden for encouraging women who have gone through pregnancy loss. That's where my heart is right now. That is what my book is about. God's little memo to me confirmed it is OK to want to focus on that area of ministry, and it is OK to protect my time so I can do what is necessary to get my book published and my message into the hands of the women I know it can help.

As the seasons change, so will be my ability to say "yes."

I was so thankful for God's personal touch in my life this morning and I just wanted to share it and thank Him for it.


Anonymous said...

You are so much like your dad! Too much talent for the time you have available. There will be plenty of time to do it all. We have eternity! I love you, Mom

Anonymous said...

Your mom is so right! I'm sure you were asked to be a part of all those ministries because you so easily help people become closer to God. I'm sure I scrambled up the hill that day because God knew what was to happen.
You are lovely! and I am blessed to have you as my friend.

Theresa said...

Thank you for this post. It is exactly what I needed to read this morning.

Love T

Sonya Lee Thompson said...

This is very interesting. I have been pondering some verses this morning:

1Cor. 7:20-24 Let each one remain in the calling in which he was called.Were you called as a slave? It does not matter to you, but if you are able to become free, use it rather. For he who is called a slave in the Lord is a freed man of the Lord. And likewise, he who is called a free man is a slave of Christ. You are bought with a price, do not be the slaves of men. Each in whatever way he was called, brothers, in this remain with God.

I think this is exactly what Paul was talking about. If you are having babies when God calls you, continue doing that until another season presents itself. He didn't want everyone abandoning their current life status to "go" so this was important to clarify.

I'm glad you've found peace in this, enjoy your Benjamin! This is a short season of life.

Katy said...

Such great advice! I have the same problem, saying no. I always feel like I need to do anything and everything people ask, the people pleaser in me I guess. Anyway, good to hear that it's okay to say no and focus on what you need to at the time!

Hilty Sprouts said...

Good for you! I praise God that he gave you such peace and lifted your burdens.

Love, Jen

Delete said...

This was spot on! Good for you for seeing what he wants you to do.

Heidi said...

HI Becky, as one who has received encouragment and knowledge from you about pregnancy loss, I think you do a great job! Thanks for your informative email a while back, I really appreciate someone with common insight:) I can't wait to hear about baby benjamin! He'll be here soon!!