I used to work 8-5, sometimes beyond 5, and called myself an employee. That’s because I got paid for my hours, although, what I was doing was something I love: Be with children everyday. After leaving that job, to go full-time in ministry (please allow me to use the word full-time on these terms), I find myself busier than when I was employed. No, my job is no longer 8-5. Its FULL-TIME.
If by employee, you mean, you work with a boss, you work for an institution, and you get paid, then I can call myself one. I work with THE Boss. I work for THE Kingdom. And I get paid MORE than what I deserve. (not necessarily on a flat-rate, twice-a-month basis)
While waiting for my deployment, to Only-God-Knows-Where (and I seriously mean that), I see to it that I keep myself busy. And busy is what I am. I pride myself that I am busy with ministry, doing this and that ‘for the Lord’. Volunteering in church, taking every opportunity to equip other Christians, tell stories to kids, all in the name of Ministry. I get a certain kind of adrenalin when I am ‘booked’.
I felt good about myself.
Not until God dealt with me. The conference I attended was a Divine Appointment. As I mentioned, going to Singapore never crossed my mind. I never heard of the IDMC conference until the day my friend told me about it. But when we were there, I knew, God wanted us to be there. (I was even more convinced when, a few minutes after the promotion for the next year’s conference, the slots were ALL booked. That’s how ‘hot’ it was…and how impossible to get a ticket. How we got the tickets this year is a long story that can be summarized in one word: Miracle)
God spoke to me about my intimacy with Him. How, in my efforts to get busy, I am no longer aligned to Him. No wonder, sometimes, the work gets tiring, the labor is fruitless. I forgot what David’s sole desire was:
Psalm 27:4 One thing I ask from the LORD, this only do I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to gaze on the beauty of the LORD and to seek him in his temple.
David just wanted to seek God’s presence, to be in His presence, to enjoy looking at Him and to inquire what He has in mind. It’s all about HIM. No wonder, David is called, a man after God’s own heart.
Activity replaced my Affection. Routine overshadowed the Reason. Guilty.
God also convicted me of my mindset. You see, when people ask me what I do, I tell them “Oh, I volunteer at church, I do this and that…” I give them an array of all these seemingly ‘good’ things I do. Little did I know that deep within my heart is a motive : To let them know I am ACTUALLY Doing something. See, I made what I do now a replacement of what I used to do.
No, that shouldn’t be. What I do now is supposed to be a response to God’s call. God’s specific call for me to fulfill His specific purpose for me. We are all called to a purpose. That purpose is to Glorify Him . And our purpose does not necessarily require a ‘doing’. Our purpose requires a ‘being’. Take for example Lazarus. He didn’t have to do anything, He just had to be dead!!!
I realized it is not what we do that constitutes God’s purpose for us. It is what we are that reveals whether we are being obedient to Him or not.
Intimacy precedes Ministry. ‘Being’ precedes ‘Doing’.
So, are you going to ask me what I am doing now?
No, I am not employed.
Here are two of my favorite songs from Avalon. They sing a whole lot about what is in my heart.