Saturday, November 23, 2013

How Being on EDGE is a Lot Like Being in a Relationship

So in case you didn't know, I am currently in FLORIDA headed into my last day of what has been a week-long conference for my job with The Navigators. How blessed I feel to be spending time in a warm and beautiful place with hundreds of others who are doing the same work on campuses all over the nation! It has been an encouraging and challenging week as I've heard speakers, attended workshops, and caught up with friends from Texas, Alabama, Missouri, Illinois, and all over the US!

As we were given some time to reflect on the things we had learned from our year and a half on EDGE Corps so far, I had one burning thought- being on EDGE is a lot like being in a relationship. Let me break it down for you.

My time spent on staff with The Navigators has been incredibly refining.
Whew! If there's one thing I've learned on EDGE it's that I am a sinner and I NEED Jesus. Every. Stinkin'. Day. Doing full-time ministry has exposed my selfishness, my desire for control, and just how much I need God's grace. I have seen both my pride and my insecurities clearer this past year and a half than ever before. I have been more aware of my weaknesses and shortcomings. But I have also seen clearer how much God loves me and wants to take me further than I am right now. 

I have learned that it's not about me.
Like I said- full-time ministry has exposed my selfishness. It has exposed my desire to serve self. To be comfortable and have it easy. But it's not about me. Life isn't about me. It's not about people loving me and serving me and being as comfortable as I can. It's all about loving Jesus, and loving people. If I'm not doing either, then any of the work I do is just a noisy gong. As a follower of Jesus I am called to lay down my life for others, as Jesus did for me. And I think I have realized that calling even more now that I am vocationally doing ministry.

I have been forced to trust and depend on the Lord more than ever in the past.
Again. Jesus. I need Him. Being on EDGE has presented circumstances that have grown my trust in God immensely. [Two words- support. raising.] I have had to depend on Him in a very real way for my livelihood. I have had to rely on His power to make any of the work I do be productive for His Kingdom. I have had to trust that He would work in students' hearts even when things seemed to be at a standstill. I have seen God come through for me in huge ways and my dependence on Him has deepened.

These lessons I've learned while on EDGE seem eerily similar to lessons learned in relationships. Maybe that's just life. Maybe God chooses to refine us and teach us and humble us through the circumstances we find ourselves in. Maybe He uses whatever means He wants to reveal Himself to us. And those means are happy and hard and joy-filled and uncertain and wonderful and messy all at the same time.

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