On the bench . . .

Have you ever felt that you were relegated to the bench when you were itching to get on the field?  I have been there!  Now, I am not an athlete by any means.  Even though I am taller than the average girl, my lack of speed/skill becomes apparent with virtually any game.  When team sports are on the agenda, I quickly volunteer to be the cheerleader.  (My coordination might be questionable, but my loud mouth is not.) Spiritually, though, the “field” is my life.  A pastor’s daughter from the womb, church ministry has always been a part of my DNA.  Teach a Sunday school class?  Of course.  Lead worship?  You got it!  Direct the church cantata?  Been there.  But when it comes to making ministry a career choice, the doors just haven’t been open.  There are times when God says “not yet” to our desires.  Maybe we are waiting on Him, but most often I believe that He is waiting on us.  Most of the great leaders of the Bible were relegated to the wilderness for years so that the character they would need for the next season could be forged.  What do we do in the waiting?  We wait in faith.  We wait in obedience.  We  stay pliable and open to God-ordained detours.  We keep serving God and others, realizing that Hebrews 11:6 says that God is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.  No matter how long our wilderness lasts, we look for the rivers in the desert that Isaiah 43:19 talks about.  I love the story of Moses because he was used most for the kingdom when by worldly standards he was a washed-up has-been.  I can certainly identify that that.  When more of your successes are in the rearview mirror, it’s tempting to put yourself out to pasture, but that’s often when God is preparing you for the next level.  So if you are on the bench, determine to serve others there.  Tend those around you, support the players on the field, serve the Coach, keep your uniform washed and ready, and one day your name will be called!

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