Turning Over a New Leaf

Turning Over a New Leaf

Autumn greetings, my friends and readers! I write today to share with you about a change in course my life has taken. You have met with me for many months, even years, here at Living in the Word. We’ve thought about lots of topics together concerning our lives, our world, and the way God and the Word speak into who we are. This writing and interacting with you has changed my life in significant ways. Actually, this writing has been key to God’s guiding me into the new season I’m entering.

I began blogging at the urging of a friend. I wasn’t sure about my next steps as a writer, and starting a blog seemed a good way to explore where I was going and to keep my ideas fresh. The regular writing soon became a place to look within and decide what really matters to me. I learned about myself and my passions as I wrote all those months. Without realizing that I was searching, I began to sense a calling I didn’t expect.

Last winter the Holy Spirit started impressing on me that God was calling me into a formal role with our church. I have long loved the church universal as well as the local church, and for nine years have found joy in ministry at the church we attend. I’m passionate about the way God works through the church to bring about His care in the world. (Maybe you read the series of posts I wrote on the importance of the church.) I met with our pastor and over months of prayer and talking with him and other church leaders we felt the confirmation that, indeed, God was doing a new thing in my life and in the life of our church. As of this September, I’ve taken on the role of Pastor of Spiritual Formation at Living Way Fellowship, a Foursquare church. I’m in the midst of a licensing process, have been teaching a class this month, and have already attended a district-wide pastor’s conference that was excellent.

Shortly after Mike and I got married, I hosted a group of women in our home to go through a book by Judith Couchman, Designing a Woman’s Life (http://www NULL.christianbook NULL.com/Christian/Books/easy_find/1459638234?Ntt=designing+a+woman%27s+life&N=0&Ntk=keywords&action=Search&Ne=0&event=ESRCG&nav_search=1&cms=1). The book led us through a process of discerning God’s call for our lives, and over those weeks I came up with what I felt fairly certain God was calling me to in my life:

“To share the heart of God with others, believers and non-believers, through writing, through the church, and through friendships in the world.”

It’s a simple statement, but God has brought me back again and again in the last sixteen years to this Spirit-led calling, affirming that though I may feel directionless at times, though my current endeavor may not feel successful, though my care for the people around me may not seem to matter, if I’m faithful to that calling God had given me, I can trust God with the rest.

I plan to keep writing. It is part of my calling. It is ministry. It is how I am wired to communicate. And, as I think it has for a long time, my writing will probably come from a pastoral heart. I hope I can be faithful in sharing, as Jesus continues to share with me, the heart of God. Turning over a new leaf isn’t so hard when it feels like what’s underneath has been there all along.

Thank you to each one of you for the role you’ve played in partnering with me. Your fellowship around the written page has been used by God. You’ve helped me find and enter into this new season, and I will always be so grateful. I hope you’ll continue to tune in here, and also to share your life with me and with those gathered here.

{Thank you to Flickr/Superior Hiking for the use of your photo!}

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2 Comments

  1. Leslie (http://Website)
    Sep 30, 2014

    That’s great news, Brenda! I’m sure that God will use you in great and marvelous ways, as you minister to and with people. Your generous and kind heart is a blessing to so many, as is your wisdom and insight.
    I’m so happy that you’ve begun this new chapter in your life!

  2. Patricia Raybon (http://patriciaraybon NULL.com)
    Sep 30, 2014

    What WONDERFUL news, Brenda! If anyone has a pastor’s heart, it is you. May God bless your commitment and courage to follow Him onto this sacred path. May you use this space to share the many insights, victories and joys of this upcoming journey. Warmest congratulations, beautiful friend. Onward for Christ!

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