Monday, March 18, 2013

Proverbs 14:4 Continued...

Last time we were looking at Proverbs 14:4.

Where there are no oxen, the manger is clean,

    but abundant crops come by the strength of the ox. 

I am still working on my “take away” from this verse! Productivity or fruitfulness for God comes with some “mess.” I have always said that God did not call me to “easy.” But He has promised to equip me for anything that He asks me to do! In fact, in his benediction to the book of Hebrews, the author (most likely Paul) writes the following:

Now may the God of peace who brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, the great shepherd of the sheep, by the blood of the eternal covenant,  equip you with everything good that you may do his will, working in us that which is pleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen.   (Hebrews 13:20-21)

God will surely equip me for whatever He has called me to do, because He is both able to do so (He raised Jesus from the dead) and He is willing (He wants me to bring glory to Jesus Christ). I do not need to fear the “mess” of stepping away from where I am now to follow His lead. This is on my heart right now as I look to my future and think about retirement from teaching. I have so loved this job (that I came into kicking and screaming at God, even though I knew it was His calling for me)! Twenty-one years ago, I was terrified to step out of my role of at-home mommy to become a full-time teacher! But God has been so faithful to not only equip me, but to give me a passion for this work. He has blessed me with amazing co-workers over the years and allowed me to become involved with such wonderful children and their families! It’s been awesome!

But I’m nearing the end of this road. I want to leave BEFORE I become a grouchy old lady. { Some are saying, “Too late!” :) } So, I can feel God beginning to pull me in another direction, but I’m not sure where - and the options are daunting. I don’t want to retire to have a clean home! I want to keep working in the messiness of life - to move into whatever adventure God has for me - to continue to be productive for Him. But I need clear direction from Him. He truly screamed into my ear when He called me to teach. He had to yell at me to overcome my own objections and fears.

When He called me last time, I had to give up something I truly loved, my work in Bible Study Fellowship. It was so hard to let that go. And He may be asking me to let other things go this time... I don’t know yet. But because He proved so faithful 21 years ago, I am confident that, as painful as it may be to let something go now, He will again show me the blessing of obedience.

Are you at a crossroads now, too? Are you terrified of the unknown ahead, and thinking you may just like to crawl back into the comfy bed of the familiar? I feel your pain! But know that if He is leading you somewhere new, it will be into a barn that is messy and fruitful! There WILL be cow poop! But He will be right there with you, equipping you, guiding you, loving you, and ready to pick you up when there are problems. It WILL be an adventure! Are you ready? Lord, make us so!

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