Have you ever watched someone in the position you wanted to be in and thought “I feel like I could do that better” or “Why them and not me?” “I would be the perfect fit instead of so and so. I have been working so hard.” Many of us have been there, yes, even in ministry. It has happened and it’s still happening within the walls of the church. Truth is, a title or a position will never fulfill you and it certainly will not bring you the satisfaction you are looking for when it is done out of God’s timing. We get caught up in ourselves when it really wasn’t about you or I to begin with. Ouch. So enjoy the ride as we humbly swallow our pride for the next moment and do a little self reflection as I come to you with transparency and a whole lot of encouragement to help some frustrations. No worries we all need a wellness check from time to time and by the end of this I hope you feel empowered to get through this difficult season or time in your life with grace, love and wisdom.
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11
There have been many times in my life when I felt like no matter how hard I worked or how much time I put in there was nothing I could do to be good enough to be seen or noticed the way I wanted to be. I have been singing since I was a little girl and my whole life I strived to be the best. I rehearsed for hours everyday. I studied music theory and different vocal techniques. I entered many competitions to push myself, auditioned for the most elite choirs and sought for education to grow the best I could in the gift God gave me. I joined the worship team my freshman year of high school and I felt pressure to do better than the service before. I had a fear that if I did not top the prior week that the Holy Spirit wouldn’t move or that I would be replaced. I share this with you because, no matter how many years of hard work I put in I still felt as if I was not appreciated, recognized or worth it. Most of my life I carried this weight of always being second best. I believed this lie that there would always be someone chosen over me. Sure I won many things, got accepted into prestige music programs and became a worship leader. All of it was nice and gave me this temporary sense of accomplishments. It still was not enough. Some how things were stripped away here and there and I stepped in the back of the line again and again. I constantly felt as if I was waiting to just enter my promise land that God had waiting for me and I couldn’t seem to break the barriers that were always in the way. I knew God had a calling over my life and I believed that wholeheartedly until I entered a waiting period that seemed like an eternity. For years I didn’t understand why I kept being placed back in the waiting until I realized that the root of my problem stemmed from a deeper root. I needed to find a way out. God kept hiding me because he wanted me to take the proper steps to heal and build my character before releasing me. Maybe you can relate with me with these feelings of worthlessness or constant fighting your way to the top and if you do, I want to share with you a few things that have helped me to overcome these moments in my life and how God revealed to me the blessing of being in the hidden place.
How you react in these moments will reveal the condition of your heart and expose the things that the Lord wants to work on with you before He takes you to the next step in your life.
Let’s do this together.
“Give thanks in ALL circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”1 Thessalonians 5:18
In difficult times a grateful heart is a sacrifice pleasing to God. Whether you get that new job or not. Give thanks. Whether you got asked to be the next youth leader or not. Give thanks. When you volunteered your time, talent and treasure but you were still overlooked, praise the lord for what you could contribute and keep walking forward. Often times we rob ourselves from living in the joy of the Lord, because we are so focused on who we are not and what we don’t have. Today we stop the nonsense. Do not continue to hurt yourself. Hurt will eventually overflow into other areas of your life in the form of bitterness, jealousy or comparison. The grateful heart empowers you to lift your head when you are weary. When I made the decision to start being more grateful I challenged myself to wake up each morning and write down 5 things I am grateful for. Then the next day I wrote down another five things I was grateful for that were completely different than the day prior. I did this Monday through Friday, week after week. Each day with a new list of things I was grateful for. Seeing these lists with my physical eyes and saying them out loud made me realize all the things that God was doing in my life. Fix your eyes on the goodness of God and not the uncertainties of your situation. Having an attitude of gratitude during waiting periods is an act of faith.
Perspective is Everything
People may not always see you, but God sees you. Sometimes we confuse man not seeing us for God not seeing us. Your perspective can be hazed by lies of the enemy. His plan is to kill, steal and destroy. God loves unity amongst His people, therefore the enemy will fight to twist your view of your pastors, leaders the church and Gods plans for you. The enemy will use offense, fears and insecurities till you feel like an elementary school kid who always gets bullied or picked last by their classmates to play kickball during recess.
Unlike your childhood bullies, the Lord does not set you apart to punish you. Right now you are in the perfect place to be. God has you hidden under His wing so you can evolve in peace and away from the spotlight. In your eyes you may think the current role in your life, your job or in ministry is irrelevant or too small. The part assigned to you at the moment is not what is important. What is important is what you do in that position. Although David was destined to be a King he had to first go through a season of trials, isolation and concealment so that when the time came to take the throne he would be able to sustain his reign. Like David, God wants to transform you from the inside out. He wants to help you build a character that can carry the weight of the blessing that lies ahead of you. Maybe God has called you to the nations, but first He wants to see if you will be obedient to His voice at a local level. If you are having a tough time getting your mind out of the gutter and you can’t seem to see past your situation speak to a mentor, meditate on the word and spend time in prayer and the Lord will give you fresh eyes.
“But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.” -Mathew 6:33
3. With great blessings comes great responsibility.
Although David was destined to be a King he had to first go through a season of trials, isolation and concealment so that when the time came to take the throne he would be able to sustain his reign. Like David, God wants to transform you from the inside out. He wants to help you build a character that can carry the weight of the blessing that lies ahead of you. We serve a God of excellence and like him we are to do everything in excellence. Put your best foot forward. Do not look to your right. Do not look to your left. Keep your eyes forward on the Lord and he will see you through. He has big plans for you and He wants to surpass all your expectations. He will equip you and teach you so you are ready to conquer where He has called you. Your neighbor cannot make you obedient. Your spouse cannot force you to be kind. Your pastor is trying the best he can to appoint people where he believes the Spirit is leading. God has not forgotten about you. He says you are worthy and he wants to build and polish what he has placed inside of you so you don’t crumble under pressure. Here are a few attributes/characteristics you can continue to offer or work on while you wait.
Slow to anger
Open to resolutions
and you can add to the list if you wish to.
Last but not least:
“Be still and know that I am God.” Psalm 46:10
No more fighting for what is already yours my friends. He’s not asking you to hold on to the end of the rope. He wants you to let go and let God.
Look, sometimes when you try to step into something prematurely, what was suppose to be a dream come true will feel like a complete nightmare. If God promised it then trust it will happen. When we allow our fears to cause us to become controlling, competitive or manipulative its like saying “Lord, I know you said you would do this, but you’re just not doing it the way I pictured so I’m going to take it from here. Thanks Jesus, but I need the wheel back!” I’ve done this way too many times and if you have too you probably know how much of a mess that made. You think you can do it on your own and the next thing you know, everything is falling apart and you are begging God to give you a quick fix. Not anymore though!
We are renewing our minds now and walking in faith no matter how unfair life treats us. It is not too late to start fresh. His mercies are new everyday. It just takes one decision to apply it to our life. Choose joy. Choose perseverance. Refuse to give up. Refuse to be average. Don’t take no for an answer. Proclaim who you are in Christ and don’t leave your home without the armor of God. Rejection is not your portion. You are not a victim to your situation. You are not a slave to your past. You may be hidden at the moment, but you are surely not forgotten.
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