My heart is to always be learning something–sometimes the lessons I learn are ones I prefer not to learn. Some lessons we bring on ourselves thru our own choosing. Sometimes we learn a great treasure of truth when not even searching–and don’t you just love those surprises of learning.
The past two years I have been serving in a country whose church heritage is about 200yrs older than our own country. So…talk about reaching the learned. The church in our nation has a sense of strength and I admire their survival—however the state of the church is stagnant. It is not reaching and teaching because it is deaf, believing it is learned.
As an American, we have sayings, “can’t teach an old dog a new trick”, or “the wheels of progress move a little slower”. I remember while serving in one church in the USA that I had an elder say to me, Sharon, “the wheels of progress run a little slower around here”. My immediate response was, “I would just like to see them move an inch” or “better yet, do you even know if the progress has wheels attached?” We can all laugh but there is a serious necessity in the church being active and moving.
How do we do this without taking to the sword, causing another casualty? Relationship. Sometime we have to lay aside our goals to build a foundation that is more than solid. A foundation that breaths and grows independantly. Just in the past two years I have watched God grow people and even change perspectives without forcing it. How? It is important to focus more on the people who are helping you. They need to know their value, they need to hear your approval and encouragement beyond the pat on the back or the casual high five in the air. They need to walk with you! (Not just in training seminars) I found the most impactive moments in my own life were the unorganized moments of education in just walking with someone else in thier life. The time spent over a cup of tea (sorry coffee drinkers). The moments spent traveling in the car, or hanging out sharing your heart equally with each other. In this, I have watched God call several to the ministry–often after I leave. It is a treat to see a spiritually “deaf” learned person open their ears for the first time in a long time. It is even more amazing to hear them share their ideas, their heart—what’s more rewarding is that somewhere in their voice you hear your own small familiar whisper.
Always remember it isn’t our work. It is Gods’ work in people that is the true reaching tool. God doesn’t absolutely need us to get His great work done, He chooses to involve us because he wants to walk with us. While working on the next event or project don’t slaughter the army to defend the artillery.
by Sharon McCammon, www.sharonmccammon.com