Monday, April 14, 2008

Shaping Me Part 3

You can read Part 1 and Part 2 first, if you haven't already!

So, here we were. Just a few years before we had been a two-job, two-income, two-child family. And now? Now we were a two-ministry family. See, my husband was the "part-time" youth minister at our church and I was voluntarily coordinating the children's ministry. The year I quit my teaching job I figured, "I have enough time now to help in ministry." I began using my own talents for the Lord. I was terribly qualified for the job. I chose and purchased the curriculum for Bible classes, helped organize Children's Church and the nursery, wrote lessons, taught classes, decorated classrooms, purchased needed supplies and even coordinated VBS one summer.

It eventually occurred to me that what I was doing was wrong. What? How can serving the Lord be wrong? How can using your talents and strengths for the Lord be wrong?

Oh but it was.

I quit the whole thing. Handed it over to whoever would take the job. All my hard work was going to go down the toilet, I just knew it. BUT, I finally got it. I understood what God had been teaching me over the last several years. I knew what I was supposed to be doing.

I spoke with S and told him I was quitting. I told him from now on I would help him with the youth ministry (even though I was really scared and felt out of my league with teens). I believe he said, "Thank you. I've needed your help." Don't think I didn't shed some tears over how I had chosen to use the gift of being home. Instead of taking better care of our home, I had been working at the church building. Instead of playing with my beautiful baby girl, I had my back to her while I typed away on lessons and schedules and VBS plans at the computer. Instead of helping my husband, I had left him to do things on his own while I worked on my stuff.

I hope someone reading this will think about the lesson I learned. I see so many wives and mothers who are SO busy doing volunteer work and ministry work and pursuing things that make them feel really good and are good things to do and are for the Lord, the neglect of what scripture says we are to be doing.

I am a helper for my husband.
I am busy at home.
I am training my children.

I must weigh every opportunity to do things outside of this house against what I know of scripture. We don't stay secluded within these walls, but my husband and I decide what we will do and how it will affect our family.

What a relief! It was such a wonderful feeling to know I had "permission" to NOT do all the things that there are to do. I learned to say "no." People got mad. People didn't understand. And our family was blessed.

Next time: The End of Satisfaction


  1. What a beautiful testimony, Brenda. I think that more often than not, it's the good things that we could do that keep us away from the essential things that we must do. You are not alone. I've been there, too. Looking forward to the next post.

  2. Speak it, girl! :) I, too, have recently said no to ministry in favor of being at home. Granted, I have a long way to go, but it's a first step. :)

    Can't wait until The End of Satisfaction. This one sounds interesting!

  3. You know what, Brenda?
    I *know* these things, but I need to be reminded that my first ministry is my husband, then my children, then my home. So thank you for your testimony! You have a great one.

  4. I did the same things. PTA president, little league volunteer, room mom, you name it I did it. I felt guilty if all I was doing was staying home and taking care of my house. I quit everything and now just focus on my husband and children. I do help with Little league (I help my husband who is on the board) and we do volunteering as a family (working the snack bar, etc.) which I find much more fullfiling than before.

    I so agree with this post. I spent so much time worrying about others I forgot about the people who mattered most. God, my husband and children.

    Great post!

  5. I believe a certain powerful peace of mind comes when you are doing the right thing. I also believe that for every woman and mother that can - look, feel and be expressed differently.You are absolutely spot on when you say you need to ask the question, How will it effect my family? What is God calling me to do? What is God equipping me to do?

    Thanks for sharing from the heart.

  6. OUCH, BRENDA! OUCH! This is too close to home for me! :p

    Anyway, keep on! I need to hear this because *shhhhhh!* but inside my heart, I know that God is going to let me move into our new house and then work on having me home fulltime. After working fulltime since my 18th birthday, this thought scares me some. But I know I can rely on Him. Hugs!

  7. Again, right on target. I swirled around in a similar circle where doing good became the enemy of doing best according to His Will. How merciful He is to awaken us to His truth.

  8. Just found your blog and I am really enjoying it. Thanks for telling your readers its ok to say "no", even to the "good" things. Why settle for good when God has the best in mind for us.


I don't get to talk to a lot of actual grown-ups during the day, so your comments make me really happy! :)