Monday, June 29, 2009

gardening gloves...

I was so tired this past week from VBS I could hardly think about anything. It also was so hot here, I was hibernating inside as much as I could, in the air conditioning. When I did go outside, I was in the sun, and managed to give myself a really good sunburn. I finally started feeling less pain from it 4 days later!

I have barely been able to keep up with a few blogs, and with some writing I need to do on my speeches for She Speaks.

But this past Friday I was able to get together with my friend Cindy. We talked through the chapter of the book we are on, and then talked. A lot.

It was a wonderful time of sharing for both of us. We didn't have any time constraints or anything, so we were able to just relax and not feel rushed. I was able to share a song I was doing for special music at church... talk about our family's of origin... go out to lunch together and do a bit of shopping... and I was also able to share what I already have done with my talks. It helped to talk to her, because it gave me some good constructive feedback, and gave me an idea of what I have to work on.

Just being with her got my brain working and processing again. I mean, I could hardly string two thoughts together prior to Friday!

I was all worked up about church on Sunday, because our Wednesday night worship rehearsal didn't seem to go very well to me, and I felt like I really hadn't been together with the band very well, and I was the team leader. I also hadn't been practicing my music for special music very long, and didn't have that worked out well either.

Cindy reminded me that God is the one who fills me and will enable me to do all things.

Our VBS director came in on the third day of VBS and said that she had nothing left to give for the week. She was tired and done. She had been poking around in her garage before leaving the house, and found an old gardening glove and brought it in with her.

She said that she was that glove. The glove could do nothing on its own. It couldn't garden, it couldn't pull weeds, nothing. It wasn't until she put her hand inside, that it could do anything. She reminded us that we are all gloves. We can't do anything on our own. It's the Holy Spirit filling us that enables us to move or do anything.

When Cindy reminded me that Sunday was in God's hands, I told her about that glove analogy. It just fit right in with what we were talking about.

So, here is a question for you.

What makes you feel like an empty glove today?

Is there something that you are facing, that is coming up (like She Speaks, or any "one time" event) that you are feeling less than capable of? Is there something in your life, or the life of your family that is more than overwhelming?

God has given us His most precious gift in His Son, and in His Spirit, indwelling us. Whether you feel it or not, He is there. He is an untapped power source. The very power that raised Jesus from the dead is given to us.

Tap into that power. Tell God that you can't do this. That is all He is waiting for. For you, and me, to admit that we can't do it. Then He asks us to step aside and watch Him work.

When I was in VBS and said to Him that I couldn't do it. I couldn't possibly teach these children any music, God stepped in. His Spirit filled me to overflowing, and taught those kids the music, intervening with discipline as needed. I remember almost watching myself from a 3rd person perspective on Thursday and Friday, realizing that there was no way that was me doing that.

I realized this past week, as my brain finally started to function again, that God had totally blown apart a box I had put myself, and Him, in.

I said to myself that there was no way I could teach kids music, especially in a classroom setting. Even though I feel more freed up than ever about using my abilities in the area of music, I didn't even realize just how much of a strangle hold this lie had on me. I didn't even think it was a lie. It almost kept me from doing VBS at all... because up to this year, I didn't have to teach music in a classroom setting, I just had to teach the music in the openings and closings of VBS. This time I had a music rotation I was in charge of.

Now that VBS is done, and I saw what God did for me, and through me, something is radically different. That box, that LIE "I can't teach music to kids, and discipline and do the classroom thing," has been show false.... Well, and true in a way. By myself, no I can't teach music, etc. But through the empowering of the Holy Spirit, trusting in His strength, not just trying to make it on my own, I can.

I did.

When I realized that truth... that I am free to teach music, or do anything with music, I could hardly believe it.

I tried to share it with my small group this past week, and had a hard time putting it into words.

The best I have come up with yet is this.

The box is gone, and I am suddenly standing in this bright, open, sunny field. The sun is on my face, the wind in my hair, and I am waiting for God to show me which direction to start to walk. I know He has a specific ministry for me, beyond what I do now. I don't know what it is, or what it will look like. But I know that waiting in this place is good. I know He will continue to equip me for whatever it is. I know that He will continue to uproot the lies that are still buried deep.

Best of all, I know He is in me, with me, filling me with His Holy Spirit. It won't be me doing it, it will be Him.

So again, I ask you.

What makes you feel like an empty glove today?
Can you imagine yourself in that open field with me?
A world of possibilities before you?

Tell Him you can't do it. Verbalize it. Out loud. Then ask Him specifically to help you. He will. He will answer that prayer. He is answering it even now, though you may not know it or feel it.


Deb said...

I love the old, work glove analogy and your picture of the open field representing unlimited possibilites.

Hope that you have a wonderful time at She Speaks...wish that I could go this year. Maybe next summer.

Thanks for this encouraging devo.

Tina said...

love the picture of the field.

I am there with you, waiting on God to point the way. I'm not sure when. I'm at peace but still feeling battle weary. I am most certainly enjoying the sun on my face for now.

wonderful encouragements, Thanks

In Him,

Yolanda said...

Beautiful visual and I'm rejoicing that your box has been blown wide open and you have beautiful new spaces to explore.


Lyla Lindquist said...

Love the old glove. Exactly how we feel sometimes, but boy, when He puts His hand in it, it's really something else again.

Hope you're getting rested up after your exhausting -- and exciting! -- week of VBS.

Thanks for stopping over and your kind comment.