Yesterday I was faced with two assignments.
The first one takes my breath away. It’s the fulfillment (seriously? already? my word for the year?) of a dream God planted in my heart when I was twelve. It makes my heart beat fast, and if I could, I’d spend every waking minute working on it.
Though the decades-long waiting period sometimes deferred hope and made my heart sick (Prov. 13:12), the fast forward progress makes my heart leap… and sing… and boogie!!
Today I was talking to Lisa Allen, a leader and friend, and honestly, I almost couldn’t talk without hyperventilating. The words gushed out of my mouth a hundred miles an hour, a flood of excitement and praise. My exuberance made her giggle a little, and she shared some wisdom she dispensed to a crowd last weekend. “Amy,” she said, “your true calling is what makes you get up and keep working even when you’re tired. Your true calling is what you’d do even if you won the lottery!”
She’s so right. This assignment isn’t just a best yes. It’s a baton-down-the-hatches-because-she’s-about-to-explode-with-joy yes!! (Here’s where I have to leave you hanging, but I promise I’ll let you in on it soon. I know. That’s not nice!)
But then along came my second assignment of the day. It’s not at all the same.
I dread it.
I’d like to avoid it.
It’s 20,000 leagues out of my comfort zone.
If I won the lottery (Since I don’t buy tickets, I technically can’t, but just hypothetically…), I’d pack up my friends and family, sail far away, and would refuse this assignment.
Because I’m clearly NOT excited about the second job, does that mean it’s not an assignment from God? Because I can’t muster up one ounce of enthusiasm for it, does that mean I should say “no”?
I’ve been reading Exodus with First 5, and from where I sit, Moses’ assignment looks even worse than my second assignment. He had to deal with difficult people and the fallout of sin. He had to manage disaster and convince others that the hard things were the things God wanted them to do. Moses had to say what God told him even when nobody wanted to hear it, and finally he led a stiff-necked multitude into the desert for more of the same. Why did he say “yes” if he wasn’t stoked about it?
Because it brought him closer to the presence of God.
Because he was part of a story bigger than himself.
Because it was an act of service.
Because it was a service of love.
Because it was the right thing to do, and he was the one God gave to do it.
Recently I read a Christian leader on social networks say that we should only say “yes” if it’s an enthusiastic yes. If it’s an emphatic “yes”. If it’s an excited “yes”. I love this leader, but I beg to disagree. For my second assignment, I’m called to say “yes” even though every piece of me screams to say “no”. Why? Well, because:
Obedience always brings us closer to the presence of God.
We’re all part of a story bigger than ourselves.
It’s an act of service.
It’s a service of love.
It’s the right thing to do, and I’m the one God has given to do it.
What’s your assignment today? Is it a bursting-with-joy version or a hang-on-tight one? I’d love to pray for you if you leave it in the comments. (Note: For confidentiality purposes, you’re allowed to be as vague as I’ve been. God knows the details, and I understand.)
There are only a few weeks left to download the Leader’s Guide for Breaking Up with Perfect for free! After Feb. 6, the Leader’s Guide and these videos that are now available to you will go on sale.
I’m having so much fun making Teaching Tips for Teachers each week as I’m teaching a small group in my own church. Filming the videos while I go through it myself is keeping the tips highly practical. Here are the links in case you missed last week or if you subscribe.
Teaching Tips for Teachers–Week 2 (or watch below)