A widely discussed topic among individuals my age is love, relationships, and marriage. Is there a specific person for each of us? What should we look for in that special someone? My answer: I don’t know. Luckily, that is not what this post is about (I apologize if I led you on…).
I have the blessed opportunity of being able to teach and learn with the high school students at our church every Sunday morning. Given, my teaching style may not be the best, but we learn some stuff sometimes. Recently we have spent time discussing our gifts and passions. Funny thing is, a lot of younger followers of Jesus may not have any idea of their “ordained purpose.” The whole “God has gifted me with…” or “My passion/desire is…” is often a foggy, seemingly distant destination.
One thing we discussed was a man by the name of Moses. *Disclosure: Old Testament vessels of God had no last names (Moses, Adam, Abraham, Noah…you get it).* Moses was a man who would eventually lead God’s people out of exile in the Promised Land. But his path wasn’t instantaneous. Moses had a passion for his people. He desired to lead them on their God-led path to the Promised Land. But #2: he hit a 8 ft wide, 10 ft deep pothole. In an effort to reconcile to of his people in an argument, one brought up a misdeed of Moses: he killed a man. No, Moses literally killed a man. In Exodus 2 we learn that Moses killed an Egyptian for beating a Hebrew, then buried him in the sand (this isn’t your normal Sunday School story I know). The man involved in the argument asked if he was going to kill him as he had the Egyptian. Whoops. Moses path to leadership would take a strange turn.
Moses wanted to lead his people. After this incurred, he took the next step: he became a shepherd. Yeah. Wouldn’t we all. For 40 years Moses led sheep. Sheep aren’t people. But I’m sure after 40 years Moses named a few sheep and spoke to them as human friends, but it’s whatever. Moses’s path to leading his people never stopped, even after this weird detour. God used this experience of Moses to prepare him to lead his people, which he would eventually do.
You may be asking, “Dude, how in the world is this going to help me find my passion and ministry? Fool.” And okay. I love you so I won’t take it personally. I doubt Moses had plans to be a keeper of some of the dumbest animals on the planet. God knew what he was doing though (omniscience). God used Moses’s shepherding to prepare him for his future ministry. We can experience the same thing. I have a passion for children. I have a desire and calling to work in youth ministry. I have been fortunate enough to be involved with my youth ministry since 6th grade, and as a leader since my sophomore year of high school (disclosure #2: I am now 22 years old and six months removed from college). I ain’t there yet, though. I am working with children in a non-profit setting (talking to kids about Jesus is hard). But I love what I get to do. For a long time I was discouraged, thinking I would never be where I truly desired. I have found I am in a state of preparation. I have been able to learn things that will without a doubt use in a future opportunity in youth ministry.
We are always in a state of active waiting. We are constantly being prepared in our gifts and desires to be used by God. You may know what you are called to do. You may have no idea. Our life is our ministry. How we are pursuing God and our passions are what are preparing us to serve. We may be desiring to lead people, but find ourselves leading sheep. We must remain faithful and trust God in what he is doing. Find your passion. Grow desires for Jesus in your ministry. Do work.
Peace. Love. And Go Big Orange.