From Banquet To Feast (Part I)
Recently I attended my first leadership banquet with our church. Once a year, this is a time that those that ‘serve’ in our church are honored for their volunteering and their dedication to the church. This is a great time of fellowship, laughter, food, and gratitude in our hearts.
It was a wonderful time to grow and learn more about one another and where the church is wanting to go for the upcoming year. When I was driving home from our church, however, the Lord began speaking to my heart. I almost feel the name of the banquet had something to do with being servants and here is why. I want you to follow with me on this for a second.
The Lord revealed to me that in order to lead, we must first learn what it means to serve. Many times the Lord can give us a vision and we want to run in that direction with it because it is neat and exciting. This doesn’t always mean the vision is for that season, we must first learn how to serve and serve with maturity, to serve selflessly and for us to prosper where He has called us to be in that season. What we see and what His desire is for our lives that season could really mean two very different things.
You see awhile back, I had written here about the Lord laying on my heart to serve my community more. I thought I would continue in a particular area of ministry, but when I prayed and asked God what He intended, the answer I had received was ‘wait’. Had I not waited, I would have missed an opportunity to grow in an area of ministry I had not been familiar and I would never have learned to master a new set of skills.
Point being, when we pray about something we are asking the Lord to separate what is our will from His will for our lives. He knows us better than we know ourselves sometimes. The scriptures do indicate that He knows the hairs on our heads and He calls us His own. We are His children and we should constantly be in a state of submission seeking His will. Every season is a training camp that He is teaching us new skills to reach that next level and eventually each level adds up and before we know it the desires of our hearts are achieved as revealed previously. Sometimes His plan for us is not revealed right away, but with time, solitude, confirming the words He is sharing with scripture, and listening clearly to His instruction, He will reveal the path we are to be on.
If I had gone on the path I had thought, for example, I would be doing some sort of speaking and writing. Though I know this is the eventual calling and plan and that He is taking me there, there were some opportunities He wanted me to serve in at our church. Right now He has me serving in hospitality. I am one of the first to arrive and one of the last to leave and this is the last place I ever saw myself serving. After praying God revealed some personal reasons as to why this church and its members really needed help in this area. They are constantly speaking life into the situation and letting me know that my help is appreciated. Not only do I always feel welcomed and loved, I feel confirmation that serving is really meeting the needs of the people. You don’t always know what the puzzle pieces are or what they may mean, but a true servants’ heart and the willingness to learn go a long way.
Toward the end of the banquet that night, our head pastor showed us a particularly touching video that shared a very important message. Stay tuned for next time to find out what the key to this message was that inspired an entire room of people to serve at an even deeper level in 2015!