For those of you out there that know me, this will be my last blog as a ministry leader at Ablaze Ministries. God has been revealing to me some new areas where He wants me to serve for the building of His Kingdom. My two years here have been packed with exciting and challenging ministry experiences. I have grown so much and wanted to share a little of how my perspective has changed on how I see myself as a man on mission.
What does it mean to be a man on mission?
Two years ago, I thought I had a pretty good idea of what this meant. After all, I had just finished dedicating a year of my life to living and serving as a missionary. I knew that I didn’t have it all figured out, though I had a pretty good grasp of what it means to be mission minded. I resolved to continue living in that same missionary spirit. I had such a great opportunity as a ministry leader with CCFM to carry out this conviction. Soon after becoming a ministry leader, one of my favorite bible verses became “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations.” Matthew 28:19 The actions in this verse were the parts I was most attracted to, I knew I was called to take up the mission that God had given me for the building of His Kingdom. As I have reflected on my last two years in ministry, I see how important the last part of this commissioning is, where Jesus says “Behold, I am with you always, until the end of the age.” Seeing Jesus present and working in my life, because I trusted and relied on Him, changed the way I see myself on mission.
In my first week of being a youth minister and moving in to town, I got in a wreck on the way to work. This event made me start worrying about my financial situation in a way I had never worried before but instead of giving into anxiety, I recognized this event as an opportunity. This was my first big chance to turn my life over to Jesus in a deeper way. I needed to turn to Him for my needs and once I figured that out I would have peace. Through many hours of prayer, I was able to do this. Even with this stress, I moved into a time of living in the peace that only God can grant us.
Each trial is a chance to turn my life over to Jesus, to the One who continues to come and save me when I fall short, and to pick me up and carry me to victory.
The source of life in my ministry was supposed to come from God and His Spirit, not mine.
The next big moment came halfway through the first semester of ministry. I remember giving a talk and knowing that something was off. My presentation was fine, but I was not meeting the youth where they were. I was really frustrated and even lost some sleep over it. Again, I was forced to turn to God. It was amazing when I did. I found out that by relying on God, the Holy Spirit would work through me and tell me how I was supposed to lead my youth group. It was so great to see the response in the youth. The source of life in my ministry was supposed to come from God and His Spirit, not mine.
There have been so many other times when I have been overwhelmed with putting an event together or just not felt ready for a night. Each time became a beautiful moment, a chance to turn my life over to Jesus even more, to the One who continues to come and save me when I fall short, and to pick me up and carry me to victory. He is the one who brings me and all my youth closer to Him. If I had not been immersed in so much ministry, on the front lines, I would not have had as many opportunities to abandon myself to the embrace of my heavenly Father and grow in His love.
It will be exciting to see how the next chapter in my life will help me to continue to grow in my relationship with God. I look forward to listening to the Holy Spirit and witnessing how He will lead me in new ways. I will continue seek the Lord and how He wants me to be a man on mission. After all, He is with me at all times to help me care for His people.
Will you allow Him to be with you, as you carry out His mission?