It was only one of hundreds of moments that I had experienced that week. Moments that I had rushed through…
And never took the time to pause.
I find that I don’t take that time and all too often miss the most valuable moments as they fall victim to my busyness. I know that in that moment I was not thinking about it for what it really was. I didn’t even know at the time it was being captured by a friend for all eternity in this image.
But, I am so thankful that she took the time to see what I couldn’t at that moment. Thank you Emily for being the one that so often shows me how to linger in the moment and enjoy every second. I need to stop and linger more often. To truly experience the moment…
But as life so often does, I get busy and don’t see things as clearly as I should.
I had begun to think that maybe my time working with teenagers was coming to a close. It had become about the things that needed to get done that were on the “to do” list, planning the next fundraiser, making sure all of the announcement slides were done for youth group that week. Over time, I had lost the true purpose of why I believe God drew me to be a youth sponsor all those many years ago…
I started to wonder if I had outlived my usefulness.
“I don’t understand what they say anymore…”
“I don’t listen to the same music they do anymore…”
“Am I getting too old for this?”
I had no answers to any of these thoughts and feelings – and I didn’t tell anyone I was thinking them. I certainly didn’t ask God His opinion on the matter. I think I was afraid of the answer – as I too often am.
As I sat on the stage with her, I was in awe of the difference that I could see in just one week. She had been on my heart so much that week. It had been a long time since someone had made that kind of impact on my heart in ministry. I had only really met her just a few weeks before…
The thing about youth ministry is that is revolves around relationship – and relationships take WORK.
A LOT OF WORK
A LOT OF TIME
But, more than anything else, I find that they require me to be REAL.
I don’t allow many people to see the real me. Vulnerability is something that I struggle with because I don’t want to disappoint people…EVER (the unfortunate part of having a relationship with a people pleaser). If I have gotten real with you, know that you are on a short list of people that I trust deeply and believe that nothing I say would ever scare you off.
I don’t know how or why – after all, God works in mysterious ways – but, she opened up to me almost immediately and shared her story with me. So, I shared parts of my story with her. I didn’t realize the significance of that moment until later that night when I saw that my amazing friend had posted this picture to her Instagram. I don’t even remember what she said about the picture.
But whatever it was
it caused me to LINGER.
To take the time to see that God wasn’t finished with my ministry to kids. To thank Him for using her to show me that there was more work to do, but my “to do” list needed to change a bit.
I was missing what I really needed to focus on.
Thankfully, God used her to wake me up that night – so that I wouldn’t miss my ministry.
“Most people don’t know there are angels whose only job is to make sure you don’t get too comfortable & fall asleep & miss your life. ”
― Brian Andreas