Wednesday, July 24, 2013

God's timing and why I'm so glad I'm not in choir (if that title doesn't make you want to read this, I don't know what will!)

In the past few weeks, God has been showing me how perfect His timing is.  I thought I would share with you just a small sample of His goodness.  I don't know where you are right now in your life, but I pray this will encourage you in your journey.  (Even though the story begins two years ago, I promise to keep it short.)

It's no secret how much I loved our former church.  Had the decision been up to me alone, we would have stayed there.  But the decision wasn't about me, or about Todd; it was about our kids.  When we left First Assembly of God in Memphis, I was super involved with so many things.  I had been in multiple Bible studies, sang in choir, was a section leader in choir at one point, helped lead worship on the worship team, I was a volunteer to help out at kids' events like get the drift.

I just kind of assumed that when we started attending Collierville First Baptist Church that I would follow along in those similar footsteps.

So when I didn't, it surprised me.

I didn't love the music at first, but I gave it a chance and tried being in choir.  I never found a spot to fit in there, though, and that stint fizzled out.  I immediately fell in love with our kids' pastor and wife, Austin and Amy, and instead, jumped in with helping in that area.  I went to camp and started helping out at least once a month in kids church, sometimes even two or three times in one month.  I would help at our kids' events, and VBS, you name it, wherever Jonah and Noah were, you could find me nearby.

We got a new worship pastor, and though I now love the music and wanted to get back into choir, I didn't.  I enjoy it each Sunday, I just never tried it again with this new leader, even though I had no excuse not to give it a try.  (Friends even encouraged me to join again, I just didn't.)

We found a Sunday school class that we loved.  We were so sad when our beloved teachers told us they were moving to Arkansas, but we quickly fell in love with the new teachers that came in.  And still, even though a part of me wanted to go back to choir (the familiar), I still did not.

Fast forward to this present moment.  Over the weeks of our Summer, God has made me fall in love with teenagers.  I've gotten to know many in the past few weeks, some because of Todd and his knowing so many from youth camps, and some from just being around them at VBS and kids' camp.  I started sensing God leading me to be more involved with the youth.  This will be Jonah's and Noah's last year in our kids' department, so maybe that's why.

Whatever the reason is, I credit God for all of the events that lead me to right now.

Just last week, during kids' camp, I came to know more and love even more, two sweet teenaged girls.  Both were in my cabin, one on the other side, the other on my side.  One night while we were at camp, on Tuesday night, several people from our church came out to attend our worship service.  After the service Todd started talking to our youth pastor and his wife, Bobby and Erin.  He told them that not only did I want to be more involved, but that he wanted me to be involved as well, because he knew just how much I would love it, and love the teenagers in our youth.

Erin immediately asked him if I would be interested in co-teaching Sunday school starting in a couple weeks.  He didn't answer for me, but do you know what?!  After my kids went to Brinkley Heights, I told my friend Lori that I was thinking about asking if there were any open spots available for me to join in that area starting when school started.  (School starts August 5th here, and our first Sunday will be August 4th.)  Lori said that she was interested in this as well, and we kinda thought we might do this together.

I apparently never told my husband this.  As much as I love our Sunday school teacher and his wife and hate to leave our class (only in attendance each week, not in name), this is really something I was feeling led to pursue.

But I never asked about it.  I don't think Lori ever even asked about it.

Erin just asked if I was willing and I immediately said yes.  She gave me a choice of being with the ninth grade or the tenth grade girls.  She prefers the ninth grade girls because they're just coming up to the high school area from middle school, and she knew that she would get to know them better this way.  (Our youth is separated by middle and high school.)  And then she told me the lady I would be with was my sweet friend Scottie.

The same Scottie I went to Brinkley Heights with the night I started falling in love with all these teenagers.

I couldn't make this up if I tried, y'all.  But do you see how God worked everything out?  He did just that, and He gave me the desires of my heart.  Being a Sunday school teacher is a huge commitment; it means going to functions and retreats, camps, and being available for events that are held during non-church hours.  It a huge commitment to being there and being involved in the lives of these precious girls, one that really knows no time restraints.

Once again, God has brought me out of my comfort zone into an area that I know nothing about.  ("For when I am weak, then I am strong..."~2 Corinthians 12:10.)  I will have to lean on Him to equip me with whatever it is I will need during this next year.  And even though I'm a little nervous about not knowing very many of the teens, I know that I will come to know and love them quickly.  I've already started praying for them, and for this next year we'll spend together.

I don't know what God has in store, but He went to great lengths to make this happen.  I'm thinking that it's going to be an amazing year.  I can't wait to share with you more of His goodness...and I could even take this story further, but for now, I'll stop.

But y'all.  God is so good.  Infinitely more good that I can ever imagine.  In fact, just me writing that reminds me of one of my favorite Bible verses of all time.  I'll leave you with that.  (And if you have something you've been praying about, don't give up!  Psalm 37:4 says that if we take delight in the Lord, that He will give us the desires of our heart.)

DO.  NOT.  GIVE.  UP.  

Keep praying, keep seeking Him!  I know I made this lighthearted, but trust me when I say that it wasn't at all.  This was something I had been praying fervently about.

"Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think."  Ephesians 3:20

Love to all.  


Phyllis said...

CRYING AGAIN!!! Do you know how hard it is to type when you are crying? All I have to say is OUR GOD IS GOOD!!!! I love you!!!!

Jennifer Goodwin said...

:) Sorry for making you cry. But why are you crying this time?!?! This is in no way or shape or fashion, sad! ;) I'm just kidding...I know why you're crying. I love you, too!

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