Brand New Niches

968946_10151729592603109_266035393_n

Last Sunday School class after 2.5 years of teaching precious 3rd &4th graders.

As the move draws ever nearer, I’m starting to transition a little bit from thinking only of all that we have to do before we go to considering what life is going to be like once we start settling into our new home. That might sound pathetic, but I’ve let myself get so busy with everything we have going on now that I haven’t paused a whole lot to think of what lies ahead.

Today I learned that the church we’ll be plugging into in SoCal has a robust special needs ministry!

I cannot begin to communicate how thrilled I am about this. I have long felt a tug on my heart toward working with mentally and physically disabled people, specifically adults. A summer or two ago I did a fair bit of online research to find a local ministry I might be able to jump into, but came up short. Grace Community’s program sounds absolutely ideal. They provide general support at church functions as well as specific, tailored activities for special needs adults, with a strong emphasis on the gospel and quality Christian fellowship. It’s yet to be seen how their volunteer needs will fit into my schedule, but at this point I am dancing for joy at the thought of any small ways I can get involved in this beautiful work!

For several years now I’ve looked forward to the weekly seminary wives meetings.

It will be such a blessing to gather with other ladies who love Jesus and are excited about supporting their husbands through each semester. I anticipate Wednesday nights as one of the most effective ways I can get to know like-minded gals on a deeper level, and I hope to pick up some volunteer babysitting opportunities for sem wives who have children! I’m excited for this as an opportunity to learn from the experiences sisters in Christ, a swell as share how God is growing and stretching me through the experience of seminary.

These are just two things I’m eager to begin with our fresh start. I’ll trade in Sunday School teacher and IT helper hats for new ones. It will be stretching and fun to watch God direct me to the niches He’s specifically fashioned me for. When I think about it that way, I can hardly wait!

Fervent Love: Serving One Another

DSC_0344

“Do nothing from rivalry or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others.” (Phil. 2:3-4)

Put someone else’s interests above your own.

There are so many ways to love our brothers and sisters in Christ, and just one of them is through acts of service. We all know what a blessing that can be when we are the recipient. Choosing to sacrifice time and energy you’d really like to put toward something else and going out of your way to show true kindness is fervent love in action. Make a conscious decision to put someone else’s interests above your own. Fervent love often costs us something. If it never does, maybe it’s not as fervent as we think.

How can you serve?

Do you know someone who has had a tough week? Double that soup recipe and take them a pot. Don’t have your own kids yet? Offer a night of free babysitting to a family who does. Spot a note in the bulletin requesting help with an upcoming event? Volunteer to pitch in. Have expertise in painting? Computer repair? Photography? Landscaping? Use your gifts to bless others. (1 Peter 4:10)

It’s God’s time.

It’s a simple concept, but it’s surprising how selfish we get with our schedules, priorities, and energy. Hold all of that in an open hand, prepared and eager to give it to others as a way of being fervent in love.  There’s something rewarding about viewing your calendar as the Lord’s. After all, it’s His whether you see it that way or not.

“It shall not be so among you. But whoever would be great among you must be your servant, and whoever would be first among you must be your slave, even as the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” (Matthew 20:25-27)