Wednesday, October 8, 2014

God's Preparation in the Pasture

Most of you know that for the past nine months I have been in a season of extreme transition and uncertainty while waiting on the Lord. In many ways it has felt like an identity crisis as I went from international church planter where I equipped and trained men that planted churches in places there have never been churches and are continuing to do so to wondering in the American context what is my place exactly? Where do I fit in to the Western Church? How does a guy with an apostolic gifting go back to his sending multi-site church? 

This season reminded me of a study in 1 Samuel in a series titled "Search for a King," that the Summit Church did a few years ago. I distinctly remember studying chapter 16 on David being anointed as king and I recognized some things about this story that I had not really paid much attention to before that allowed me to have this new perspective for where I am in life that I am being reminded of now.

Verse 7 is key in understanding this passage as we see that what the world and God are looking for in a leader are two totally different things. In fact some would even say that God is the worst chooser of people in all of humanity because look at who he chooses. Although, this verse is key, it is not what had the most impact on me. If you look at verse 12b it says, "Then the Lord said, "Arise, anoint him, for this is he." Verse 13 says, "...And the Spirit of the Lord rushed upon David from that day forward." 

But what really sticks out to me in this passage is the gap between verse 13 and 14. David had just been anointed as king, the Spirit of the Lord had rushed upon him, and he is now back in the pasture where he was before any of that happened so that God could prepare him. During this series the Summit's teaching pastor J.D. Greear had us fill in that blank space between those two verses with the following words: obscurity, monotony, and reality. Remembering this truth definitely struck a chord in me as I feel that this is something I have been dealing with during my transition.

I am not saying that God has set me apart as he did David because it is unlikely that you or I would ever be able to fill the role that David did as he had a unique role in this story. But I do know that God has called me to serve Him in a clear way and that 16 years ago I publicly recognized and surrendered to that call. Honestly over the last 16years I have been along for the ride, but the last couple of years wondered and questioned at times why I am where I am in life as I look back on these years. God has done some amazing things and used me in unreached areas of the world, but I often come back to this flesh induced sense of uncertainty. 

I fully recognize that God has been and is preparing me for what it is He has for me and part of that preparation process is being in the pasture of obscurity, monotony, and reality. And Just as with David, God has recently showed me what it is He has been preparing me for, but for now I still need some preparation time in the pasture.

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