Have you ever walked into a place for the very first time and thought to yourself, “Wow, this feels like home.” After a long, two year search for my new church home, that’s exactly what I felt when I walked into Shorepoint City Church. It’s not something I can totally explain. In fact, it doesn’t make much sense. How can a place you have never been before feel like home?
After being so hurt by the church, I’ve found myself critical and angry. That church turned into a place that didn’t need or want me anymore. The work I had done as my ministry, the way I served my church, was taken over by staff. I tried to convince myself that I could know God without being a part of a church. Churches are run by people. And people hurt each other. I don’t want to be hurt, I just want to serve and worship and serve God. I told myself that I worked in a church, therefore, I got my weekly dose of church. But I’m not worshiping when I work. I’m not singing about God’s greatness. I’m getting things done. I’m preparing for others to come and worship.
Imagine being a kid who has been away from home. Imagine what it feels like to walk through your parent’s front door for the first time in years – excited yet comforted. I belong here. I have purpose here. There is a place for me here. I am needed and wanted here. I’m where I belong. I’m home.
God is in this place. He is doing amazing things at Shorepoint and I want “in.” I’m all in. Put me in coach! Use me! I want to be a part of what’s happening in this place. Planting a church sounds like a whole lot of work, sweat and hurt feelings. But it also sounds soooooo worth it!
God gave me gifts, just as He has given each of you a special set of gifts. I turn my palms towards the heavens and offer every gift I have received back to Him. I’ve been to hell and back and all I want is for the pain to mean something. I want something good to come from my story – even if it means that just one person knows the eternal kind of love I know.
Sometimes I get so excited to get in on the action, that I jump ahead of a process. I forget that good things come with time. Relationships need time to cultivate, deepen and for trust to be formed. My insides feel like they could burst I am so excited to do God’s work. I forget that it doesn’t happen overnight or in one conversation. The introduction has been made and I just need to wait patiently. I’m committed to the team, I’ve got the team colors on. Now I need to wait for my turn to hit the court and continue to pray for God to point me in the direction He needs me.
Thank you for the gifts you have given me. Thank you for a church that awakes your spirit within me; a place where I can go each week and know that you’ll meet me there. Please use me. Use me to tell of your goodness. You have planted in me a passion for communication, writing, graphic design, technology. Show me what you want me to do with these gifts. Lead me in the direction you want me to go. I’m ready and willing to go wherever you lead me. In Jesus name, AMEN!