during some much-needed time spent with Jesus i realized what i’ve been holding onto that needed to be let go of. i’ll be honest and say it’s been awhile since i’ve set aside some solid time to actually tell God everything on my heart and meditate on His Word. last friday, i sat on my bedroom floor and started telling Him all of the things that have been on my mind that i’m concerned about, that i need to make decisions about, come to a conclusion about, or stop worrying about. school and classes. work and my concern about not being able to accomplish everything expected of me. friendships. missions trip opportunities. everything. well, i thought i had said it all, but i still felt uneasy and like there was something left that i had kept hidden deeper in my heart; something i didn’t want to discuss with God. i sat for a second in silence, listening. i felt Him graciously take from me the things i had surrendered to Him, but i also felt Him tell me that there was still one very important thing left to give up, and what came to mind was “leadership”.
i’ve been a part of the leadership team with my college group for a little over 2 months now, and it has been nothing but a blessing. i have trouble committing to things like that sometimes, afraid of the times where i won’t want to participate, when it would just be easier to not be part of it at all. but this was an opportunity i couldn’t pass up because i knew God was calling me to step into it. shortly after i joined, i also became a member of the worship team. i’ve loved to sing for as long as i can remember, but i’ve always been pretty much just a closet singer. not even my parents ever really hear me sing my best, haha. i’m convinced, however, that the only reason i’m comfortable enough to sing in front of the college group now is because of all the practice i had over the summer with the amazing and musically gifted team i traveled with to Israel and Greece! i don’t remember a day NOT singing my heart out at some point with some of my favorite people. 🙂 that’s one way i definitely see how God prepared me for this position of leadership He now has me in. i’ve learned a lot through it so far, and i know this is just the beginning. i’m starting to understand what it means to genuinely worship and to comfortably lead a congregation of people to the feet of Christ through music. it’s no easy position, and last week especially, i was reminded that not only as a worship leader, but as a leader in generally, i still have much to learn. God so beautifully broke me down this last week and reacquainted me with my own inadequacy, my undying need for His strength, and the reminder that His mercies are new every morning. what a gift.
i totally did not have the right mindset for leading worship last week, and part of that was caused by my distraction with this new song i wanted to introduce to the college group. i thought i knew it well enough, but ended up not feeling so comfortable with it after all. i should’ve practiced more. anyways, it threw me off. i wasn’t focused on the words as much as i was focused on how horrible of a job i was doing… i missed a few cues and go totally lost. i knew my focus had been elsewhere, and that made me disappointed in myself for many reasons. i was upset, but i brushed it off and told myself that most likely everyone forgot, or they didn’t even think it was as bad as i thought it was to begin with. my friend and fellow worship leading companion, Marta, (who also happens to have years of more experience doing this than me) texted me the next day and wanted to meet up for coffee to talk about worship in general and what it means that we are part of this team. she knew i was nervous on thursday and out of the kindness of her heart wanted to come alongside me as a sort of mentor. we went to starbucks and the first thing i did was cry. i had just come from that quiet time with God when i heard Him tell me to surrender leadership. suddenly it all made sense. i knew that what seemed to me to be an awful experience leading worship the night before was exactly what i needed. God used it to break me down and show me that i had been taking matters into my own hands, and that needed to stop.
it’s time to stop being comfortable. i am a follower, and i always have been. i’ve always been so much more comfortable hiding behind other people, doing what they tell me to do, letting them take authority and get the job done instead of being the initiator, myself. God does not want me to be stuck in my comfort zone because there comes a point when it hinders me from reaching my full potential through Him. that’s how i know that leadership is something i am called to. and i know that it’s a characteristic that is essential to every aspect of my life right now. at church, in relationships, at work, at school. there’s more to leadership than i realized, before it was a heavy calling on my heart… i believe it’s about taking action and getting something done when it’s easier to be lazy or let someone else take care of whatever the task is; initiating conversations with people and truly taking an interest in getting to know them; reaching out to others instead of expecting people to reach out to me all the time; being responsible and diligent; but most importantly, letting God be the one to grow these qualities in me in whatever ways He sees fit instead of trying to develop them myself. that is where i failed miserably. and when God let me fail is when i realized how easily i got off course, how desperately i need His help, and how hard it is for me to accept His grace. i don’t deserve it. i’ve been such a letdown… i haven’t cared about school as much as i should; i let my coworkers take care of the duties i don’t necessarily want to do at work; i screwed up at worship the other night; i totally haven’t been reaching out to some people in my life who i know really need it. i literally have failed at being a leader in every way that God has asked me to lead. at first i thought that i should just give up now; clearly, i can’t do this whole “leadership” thing that He’s called me to. i suck, obviously. but that’s when i was reminded that this is not something i’m supposed to be able to do on my own. the whole point is so that God can be glorified through me. i will fail, and that’s okay. all the more reason to rely on my Savior to sustain me and complete me. God hasn’t called me to do this on my own, He walks alongside me; He strengthens, forgives, corrects, and loves me. and He wants me to always accept His grace and mercy with humility and thanksgiving.
i’m motivated now. now that i stand corrected, i desire to keep trying. i want to continue to become the person God is shaping me to be. i want to work harder in every area, especially in trusting Him to be my ultimate source of strength, and the One who helps me excel as a leader.
// Nehemiah 9:17 “…But You are God, ready to pardon, gracious and merciful, slow to anger, abundant in kindness, and did not forsake them.” //