Every second and fourth Wednesday we host a Life Group from church at our house. We share a meal together, talk for a bit and have a Bible study. This past Wednesday we looked at a passage from Matthew.
Matthew 25:14-30New Living Translation (NLT)
14 “Again, the Kingdom of Heaven can be illustrated by the story of a man going on a long trip. He called together his servants and entrusted his money to them while he was gone. 15 He gave five bags of silver[a] to one, two bags of silver to another, and one bag of silver to the last—dividing it in proportion to their abilities. He then left on his trip.16 “The servant who received the five bags of silver began to invest the money and earned five more. 17 The servant with two bags of silver also went to work and earned two more. 18 But the servant who received the one bag of silver dug a hole in the ground and hid the master’s money.19 “After a long time their master returned from his trip and called them to give an account of how they had used his money. 20 The servant to whom he had entrusted the five bags of silver came forward with five more and said, ‘Master, you gave me five bags of silver to invest, and I have earned five more.’21 “The master was full of praise. ‘Well done, my good and faithful servant. You have been faithful in handling this small amount, so now I will give you many more responsibilities. Let’s celebrate together![b]’22 “The servant who had received the two bags of silver came forward and said, ‘Master, you gave me two bags of silver to invest, and I have earned two more.’23 “The master said, ‘Well done, my good and faithful servant. You have been faithful in handling this small amount, so now I will give you many more responsibilities. Let’s celebrate together!’24 “Then the servant with the one bag of silver came and said, ‘Master, I knew you were a harsh man, harvesting crops you didn’t plant and gathering crops you didn’t cultivate. 25 I was afraid I would lose your money, so I hid it in the earth. Look, here is your money back.’26 “But the master replied, ‘You wicked and lazy servant! If you knew I harvested crops I didn’t plant and gathered crops I didn’t cultivate, 27 why didn’t you deposit my money in the bank? At least I could have gotten some interest on it.’28 “Then he ordered, ‘Take the money from this servant, and give it to the one with the ten bags of silver. 29 To those who use well what they are given, even more will be given, and they will have an abundance. But from those who do nothing, even what little they have will be taken away.
After reading the passage our leader asked some questions about what we’re stewarding currently and what’s the hardest for us to steward well. As thoughts bounced around the group my friend, Katie shared with the group something along the lines of, ‘If God is telling you to do something and you don’t do it he’ll move on to someone who will’. A wave of conviction washed over me and settled as a knot in my belly and a weight on my heart. It’s been a long time since I’ve experienced conviction like that. I wanted to run somewhere, anywhere so I could sob in repentance. Since we were in the middle of a life group meeting that we were hosting I couldn’t very well do that. It’s probably just as well because I had to sit there marinating in conviction while continuing to listen to what God had to say to me through people in the group. Sometimes I’m so ready to repent of something that I don’t hear everything God wants me to hear.
When our group started talking it didn’t take long for the one thing I was supposed to be stewarding but wasn’t to rise to the surface. I remembered a time many years ago seeing John Bevere at a local church. I’d read his book, The Bait of Satan, a few years before that and was impressed by his insight and challenged by its content. During that speaking engagement he told a story of how God had asked him to write a book but he hadn’t done it. I don’t remember exactly how much time had passed but finally God said to him, ‘If you don’t write this book I’ll find someone that will’. His story stuck out to me because I wanted more than anything to do God’s will. I didn’t write back then nor did I ever consider being a writer. I was a singer. I followed Gods leading to study music in college and I wanted to be a worship leader. Being a music pastor was my first job out of college. Then I discovered that I didn’t really like being a music pastor although, since God had called me to study music in college, told me very clearly to be a music pastor & opened an incredible door for me to have a job before I even graduated from college, (keep in mind I was a divorced, single mom) I was very determined to continue along that career path. Truthfully, I’m thankful that I had the opportunity to study music because it was an amazing experience. I love worshiping & leading worship when I have the opportunity but by the time my youngest daughter was born I felt God calling me to stay at home with my three girls.
I never started blogging because I wanted to write. I only wanted to stay in touch with my friends and family and keep them updated on our lives and share pictures of the kiddos. My friends were bloggers too and so we’d read and comment on each other’s blogs and it was just fun. As our kids got older some of my friends quit blogging and moved onto other things and some of us started writing less about kids and diapers and more about things that were important to us. Then one day I found myself writing without an audience that I knew personally (except for my parents and Travis). I didn’t know who was reading what I was writing, my little community of friends was gone and I felt less sure of my thoughts and opinions. By nature I am very much an introvert. I like to keep my thoughts private unless I’m talking to someone I’ve grown to trust. Writing was the thing that rose to the surface that night as my friends were discussing the scriptures. Saying that it rose up seems so calm, it was more like it was shouting with jazz hands and blinky lights.
I don’t have time. I’m not a writer. I didn’t study English. Why would anyone care what I have to say? What if I say the wrong thing? What if I write about the Bible and it’s not accurate? What if I start writing and stop again? These thoughts and many others have kept me from writing consistently. But fear of failure, pride, and excuses all fell away in our living room that night. What about music? Well, I’m on the worship team at church and I feel confident that I’m stewarding that the way God wants me to at the moment. I’ve also been reminded recently that I didn’t only study music. My major was Sacred Music and the amount of hours I spent studying the sacred (Bible, theology, etc.) rivaled how much music I was studying. At the time I was frustrated by having to spend so much time studying something that had nothing to do with music. I had no idea that it was going to be a well for me to draw from in the future.
In the week since we had that meeting I’ve repented of my stubbornness and disobedience and have embraced this new season in my life. If I’ve learned anything in my time on this planet it’s that seasons change. I’ve always used my voice for Jesus and it’s just taking a different form in this season.
I don’t want to be the unfaithful servant. Not ever again. I’m thankful for grace and that God cares enough about me to correct me.
So where do I go from here? I write…and write and write and write. On Sunday during the worship service at church God clearly identified a block of time that I could utilize a different way so that I’d have more time in my day. My writing content is going to change too. I still plan on writing things about life but I want to wrap that into posts that are more devotional and inspirational in nature. I think that by focusing on the Bible and how it applies to not only my life but also to the life of others I can fulfill what I wanted to do when God called me to ministry many years ago. I wanted to help people and I wanted to see Jesus change their lives the way he’d changed mine. If writing is one of the ways God wants me to do that then okay, I’m willing to do it.