The journey God has each of us on is a very personal and intimate one. The dreams he gives us, the visions He imparts for us to carry, are so close to our hearts it’s like bearing our own child! Nurturing it, raising it and ‘releasing’ it into the world as God pleases.
Last week we were working with our education services manager, Steve to submit an alternative education programme to the government. This has been part of an ongoing vision God gave Paul and I many years ago. When it was submitted, I was exhausted (Steve certainly did most of it and had many a late night, and time away from his family during that season.) And as I talked with the Lord, enquiring why I was so happy, yet so tired and in need of rest, I was reminded that this is similar to a birthing labour process – after labour the body desires rest and sleep as it has just been through a marathon and a half!
Then, last night we were able to cook, eat and clean up in the new community centre kitchen for the first time. Joy. Filled. My. Heart. We have dreamed of this for years. Imagine what God is going to do with this space. The conversations that will be had. The transformation and healing that will take place. Fresh revelations of the person of Jesus Christ. It’s like one big family sitting around the dinner table, fellowshipping and worshipping, encouraging and correcting.
When we let people in on the journey, the vision, the community that God creates, this is no small thing. As parents are careful about the influences that are let in to their children’s lives, as leaders, as Vision bearers so must we be careful. As leaders we regularly lose sleep, we wear out the carpet with kneeling in prayer – not only pouring out petitions in times of extreme sorrow, but also praising Him for the ridiculously high mountains of joy we experience with Him too.
The calling that God gives each of us is not just a task which is to be completed, it is a part of who we are in Christ.
When the vision struggles and appears to lose its way, so do I. When it rejoices, so do I. When it becomes self-centred, so do I.
Great are God’s works time and time again. But – Lord, please give us discernment as to who we let in, who we move out, and reveal to us the rhythm of your heart to which we should respond in. Help us to trust others, but also help us to recognise the cautions that you give through your Holy Spirit. Teach me when to pick up, and when to put down.
Always bring me back to the cross and then to the empty tomb. From the nail pierced hands to the nail scarred hands to the right hand of God the Father.
As Mothers in labour we certainly don’t let everyone into the labour ward for the delivery. Neither do we have 24 hour visiting rights even after birth. But we can still be supported and encouraged. We can still support and encourage.
How do you support and encourage those in leadership around you? Do you consider the countless unseen burdens they carry?
For those in leadership roles and roles of influence – how are you supported? How do you discern what and with whom you share your journey?
Nehemiah 9:19-21, “Because of your great compassion you did not abandon them in the wilderness. By day the pillar cloud did not fail to guide them on their path, nor the pillar of fire by night to shine on the way they were to take. You gave your good Spirit to instruct them. You did not withhold your manna from their mouths, and you gave them water for their thirst. For forty years you sustained them in the wilderness; they lacked nothing, their clothes did not wear out nor did their feet become swollen.”
I pray these words might resonate and encourage you in some way.