Monday, November 18, 2013

When the Ministry Becomes the Mistress ~And yes, I'm going there.

The serpent is the most subtle creature....

That’s how it begins. Subtly. A meeting here, a meeting there. An added bible study.   Hospital visits. A wedding. A funeral. A crisis. A need.

The overwhelming responsibility of ministry can throw a personal life out of balance.

A missed practice. A missed recital. Game. Homework assignment. No time for date night. A makeshift birthday or anniversary. Chipped paint. High grass.  No talks. No walks. No prayer.

Just as Eve was enticed by the slithering serpent, the mundane routine of everyday life gives way to the draw of being needed. Worthy causes and legitimate demands subtly slither in, separating the oneness of the flesh like a sultry harlot maneuvering her way into the heart of a married man. And just like that, we sin. The enticing call of ministry can blur even the best of judgement.

Adultery is easily justifiable when the mistress is ministry. We begin to deny the wife of our youth with a well preached sermon. The new worship set captivates us more than her love. The satisfaction of her breasts is not as enticing as a church fellowship because prudence is now enticement...with rubies. She is not as precious.  She is submissive to another husband, committee, class. And just like that, we sin.

But we have to meet the needs of the people, right? Did God not call us to be the salt of the Earth? Preach the Gospel to the nations? Feed the hungry? Take care of the widows and orphans? Yes, and yes. However, he has first called us all to our homes.  

The breakdown of God’s example of the family stems from subtle deceits. Be not deceived friends. Secret desires to be seduced by flattering lips can cost you your life.


Saturday, March 9, 2013

When God Blesses Your Children

Five years ago, I BEGGED my husband to take me home to my dear Tennessee. I was fed up with the whole failed diversity thing and very much over the para (with no) church ministry thing.  We had experienced blatant ignorance and racism in our Christian school, a call away from our church, and parted ways with our job. Like a five year old child, I wanted my mama.

In the midst of my pity party, I asked God for one thing, the protection of my children.

We left our church, our school, and our job. I packed my bags and was ready to go home to my mama. It was then when a funny thing happened; God blessed my children. In the midst of chaos and confusion, and all the animosity and hurt feelings; God saw fit to protect their hearts and minds, and bless them.

When God blesses your children all is right with the world. It feels like the heavens open up and God smiles directly at you. You rest a little better. You breathe a little easier. When God blesses your children, you know that everything is going to be okay.

My children have been thrust into manhood by the hard truths of life, all while being surrounded and protected by a sovereign God. Since that time, 2 of my sons have committed to play college sports, and one is being recruited to do so.  My children have won athletic, music, and art awards. Embraced by a new set of friends, they face life with a certain maturity that most adults don't have. They know about the sufficiency of grace and the sovereignty of an almighty God. Our family was in a free fall, but God saw fit to give them what they needed when they needed it.  

So, if you find yourself wallowing in sorrow about things you cannot control, or throwing a pity party when life doesn't go your way, remember that everything happening around you is not always about you. Don’t be quick to pack up and leave. God may use that situation to bless your children.