Words of My Life: Story
They could not have given me a better topic for my message to our Eastern Europe staff women: Share Your Story::
For His Glory. I love telling stories--especially stories of God working in my life and others' lives.
I do a lot of speaking, and most of it is weaving together God’s Word and the stories of my life into the realities I have learned about living in Christ. So the hardest part of this assignment was telling the stories and the lessons in just 20 minutes. (I was not quite successful.)I approached it by relating a few of my “aha” moments in learning to live for God’s glory. Here are three aha's I related, though the stories that revealed them to me are just hinted at here.
Aha #1: His Way Is Better Than My Way
I grew up with one great goal in life: to get my own way. My determination to get my own way impacted the whole family—I have affirmation from my mother and my sisters.
But at a Young Life ski camp when I was 15, I discovered that not only did Jesus offer me love and forgiveness, but He would also show me His better way for my life. Really? He had a better way than my way? I said “yes.” I exchanged my way for His way.I thought it was a done deal, until the next day when I discovered that I would get to make that same choice every day of my life—my way or His way? Gratefully, the more I have seen the beauty of His way, the more I have readily chosen it.
Aha #2: He has designed me for specific calling and mission
As my story unfolded, I recognized three significant parts of His purposes for me:
*My calling is to God’s children
After years of loving working on the evangelistic Collegiate Challenge magazine, my team began the Worldwide Challenge magazine to inform, inspire and challenge God’s people to become and do all God created them for.
Wow! I loved introducing people to God’s love and forgiveness. But my deepest being resonated with seeing God’s children live out His purposes for them.
*My calling is to the staff of our ministry
I will talk or speak or write to anyone about Jesus. But God made it clear that my primary focus was to love, encourage and challenge our ministry staff to be and do all that God had for them. I hope they receive as much joy as I do in my sharing it.
*My personal mission is “to encourage”
“When I am with you, I think I can do anything.”
These words, written on a note card by one of my team members, is still in my desk where I can be reminded of what God has put in my heart. I love to see people believe God for the more He wants to do in and through them. I love to see them shining in who they are and how God uses them.
Aha #3: The Holy Spirit is God’s provision for this impossible story.
It didn’t take me long to realize I couldn’t do it on my own. Sometimes God’s way was too hard, or too crazy or too little…. I needed help—which He had already provided.
I first learned about this amazing resource from Bill Bright. He made it clear: the Christian life is impossible—only Christ can live it. So He sent His Spirit to live in us and enable us to do whatever the Father said.
“And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever—the Spirit of truth… the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you.” (John 14:16, 26)
This Spirit—the Holy Spirit—lives in us and through us. He gives us comfort, encouragement, courage, wisdom, power….He teaches us and helps us, convicts us of sin and convinces us of God’s love for us, fills us with peace and joy and hope. (John 14-16)
So how do we live out our story as Jesus wants us to live?
We choose His way moment by moment.
We walk in our personal calling and mission.
We do the impossible by His Spirit.
What about you? How is God unfolding your story?
C2015 Judy Douglass