Tuesday, February 17, 2009

What I Have Learned This Week: Pride and Pruning

For those of you that are new here, this summer I had the privilege of meeting Constance (of FindingBalance) and Travis, co-founders of True Campaign. A ministry that is dear to my heart. A ministry I hope to be more active in when God says the time is right...

Constance emailed me last week to check in and I was finally able to acknowledge, and put into words, exactly what has been swirling in my heart for the last seven months. 

The short story is that I have finally come to peace about the humble ministry to which I have been called. 

For the longer version, here is part of the email I wrote to Constance...it's what I've learned this week:

I have been praying for awhile about what ministry God was leading me to. He has blessed me with many talents: I can (and have) lead small groups, taught bible studies, mentored in areas that I have experience, and led worship.  I loved all of it. However, they are all gifts that bring attention to myself. Most of them all have to do with performing (in one way or the other)...and stroking my ego just a bit. I was approaching them with the idea of helping others, but also with the kickback of "being noticed" in mind.

 

So you can imagine my surprise, when after praying for many, many weeks about my role in ministry, I was surprised that His answer was consistently-- "Your family."  

 

I really think that the Lord is using this time to burn away the chaff.  To break the pride that motivates me to use the gifts he has given to promote myself. 

 

He had to intervene, and teach me how to get out of the way of myself. 

 

There has been nothing more humbling for me than homeschooling (probably because there wasn't anyone more judgmental in the past about home-schoolers than I was!

 

There isn't anyone around telling me what a great teacher I am. No one to stroke my ego and let me know I am doing a good job. I am daily having to lay down my wants and desires to serve my family.  My time is not my own, I cannot go to the gym everyday, nor have lunch with girlfriends whenever I want. My days are no longer solely in my control!

 

On top of that, I am an extrovert with deep insecurities. I have hidden those insecurities with a people-pleaser- I- can-do- it -all- attitude for so long, I didn't realize how it controlled me. I am always so afraid of what people think of me, that I let it rule my days.  I find myself battling my own presuppositions regarding home-schoolers, not many of which are true.  But I digress...

 

The most difficult part was God was telling me to "wait". Not just for your ministry, but even the Women's MInistry that I led here four years ago.  He has put the reigns on me like never before, and its hard. But its good.

 

I am learning that I depend far too much on my God-given talents than I do on God. I depend on the kudos and praises of  "man" instead of the love of God. I am learning that the bright lights of center stage aren't as rewarding as the humble position of being the doorkeeper...but I haven't learned that the easy way....I am stubborn, and my ego and flesh have been well fed for many, many years...

 

I should have contacted you sooner. But i just kept hoping God would let me know that I had learned what I needed to learn, and give me the thumbs-up to tell you that I could jump in with both feet. 


I was so CERTAIN it was the right time, because God had so finely tuned our meeting, and the meeting with Travis, and the eight weeks of writing the True Campaign stuff on the blog....and the response and conversation that all those things had sparked (and continues to spark) with people on the net and in real life. I just knew my day had come! 

 

And it has...it just looks a lot different than I thought it would. 


As difficult as yielding myself to the Lord has been, I am finally feeling peace about where God has me.


Learning this lesson still has a bit of a sting to it. Dealing with pride is never painless...but the fruits of pruning are beginning to feel worth it...


I know that there will be a day when I can be more active in FindingBalance and the True Campaign. I look forward to that day. Until then, I am content.


To see what other bloggers have learned head on over to Musings of a Housewife.

12 comments:

Julie From Inmates said...

WOW! I struggle with a lot of those same things. Great post!

Lindsay said...

Wow Kellie great things you learned this week! You are right about it not being easy but in the end the results weigh out way the pain.

JanMary said...

Wonderful post - thanks for sharing your heart.

Megan O. said...

Thank you for sharing what you're learning. I'm sure it was hard to put all of that into words. It's so neat to see how the Lord is leading you and what He will make of all of this in His perfect timing. Thank you for your transparency.

nicole said...

I think many Moms can understand your struggle. Thanks for sharing.

C D said...

walking in the same shoes... you 'n me...

scary true. Thanks for baring all that raw stuff with the interweb peeps!!

xxoo

kathy said...

Great post kellie - very inspiring!


We have been busy this past week and a half remodeling a rental by adding wood floors, painting the entire place, replacing sink, etc. However, I'm stuck in bed with a sore throat right now so that means time to surf the net!

jen said...

Mmmm - While I didn't write a letter like this this week, I have learned the same lesson this very same week. Several things have been happening in my life that have (again) reminded me that where I am serving now is not supposed to look like where I served before. I am to be at home, serving my family in ways that I had not anticipated (homeschooling is the biggie.) While I am wildly fullfilled, I sometimes feel a little lost in this new place, wondering exactly what happened.

Thanks for sharing your letter!

Chel said...

Contentment is pretty much what we all need to aim for... the attempt to be content in whatever role God has for us, whether or not it's one we would have chosen for ourselves. If I had a dollar for every time that God's plan wasn't anything near what my plan was (and turned out far better than my own plan), I could take us to lunch... along with your homeschool kids. :)

Musings of a Housewife said...

Your posts are always so thoughtful and vulnerable. I envy the ability to articulate that way. I stay light and silly because it's too HARD to write about what's really going on deep down inside.

Once again, thank you for sharing. I am sure God will bless your ministry to your family greatly because of your servant's heart.

mer@lifeat7000feet said...

Excellent post, Kellie.

I think that ministering to your family is such a high calling, but it's often so misunderstood. I applaud you for your commitment and dedication to the ones that God has given you.

Blessings, sweet friend. And thank you, thank you, thank you for sharing so vulnerably.

Blue Skies said...

Thank you Kellie for your transparency. The Lord is doing such wonderful things through you in your ministry to your family. I am certain you will be blessed through your faithfulness to following His plan for you!