Relying on God’s Strength

Relying on God’s Strength

I had the great privilege of spending this past summer in India.  While there, I often complained about the lack of things to do.  We often filled our time  reading, spending time with each other, or trying to strike up conversations with Indians.
I am a doer; a fixer; and a person who likes to get after it.  You need a task done?  I’ll do it.  I have to be reminded to rest sometimes.  Being in India proved hard but, I believe I should have cherished those days more.
In Assimilation Ministry, the work doesn’t stop.  Correction:  On GLINK the work doesn’t stop.  To add to Assimilation Ministry, I also work in Women’s Ministry, am the senior pastor’s assistant, take graduate level courses, work the front desk answering phones and monitoring visitors, and strive to maintain a normal social life. (Every GLINKer experiences their own set of duties and responsibilities.  These are mine.)  Some days I wake up and think that surviving the day seems impossible.  Other days I wake up believing the day will be easy and will not require that much energy, only to come home exhausted from a workload never imagined.
The job is constantly emailing, connecting one person to the next, setting up events, tearing down events, and a myriad of other things.  It makes me long for days in India when we spent copious amounts of time in the Word or when we played spades for the millionth time.  When the calm comes—and it does come—I know I will not trade my job for anything.  It’s busy.  It’s stressful and while, I don’t always handle the stress well, I have the strange, wonderful privilege of seeing my humanity.  This job makes me see just how inept I am at my job and my relationships.  
Because of my ineptness, I also get to see the provision, love, and grace of God.  Just this past week I experienced all three. Our membership class provided enough food for me for a week, saving money and the time necessary to cook the food.  My second job this week had me sitting at a table by myself reading textbooks so I could stay afloat in class.  When I wasn’t very kind to a friend because of the stress, I not only received her forgiveness, I also had the chance to work off the stress by putting in some good, old manual labor.  When I thought to myself, “I cannot live in community anymore, I need space,” God showed me just how wonderful people are.  He pointed out to me my limited ability to love and showed me how patience and kindness work wonders in other’s hearts.  
I love my job.  I love the days when one moment I am answering phone calls about Mercy Ministry in the middle of trying to determine the Women’s Ministry core values having just finished writing an email coordinating volunteers to do various tasks for our membership class but before completing the few tasks Pastor Ken requests of me.  And while there are days that I definitely rely on my own sufficiency, my notecard of Isaiah 40: 28-32 brings me to reality.  Isaiah writes:
“Have you not known? Have you not heard?
The Lord is the everlasting God,
    the Creator of the ends of the earth.
He does not faint or grow weary;
    his understanding is unsearchable.
29 He gives power to the faint,
    and to him who has no might he increases strength.
30 Even youths shall faint and be weary,
    and young men shall fall exhausted;
31 but they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength;
    they shall mount up with wings like eagles;
they shall run and not be weary;
    they shall walk and not faint.”
 

If there is anything I learned from being in India and experiencing a slow down of sorts, it is that being in the Word on a consistent basis is necessary.  Here, on GLINK, it is what determines whether or not I get through a day glorifying God’s name or wishing I could start all over. 

Post by Mary Emily