Friday, June 11, 2010

Selah

Teen camp this year was for me, definitely a year that far surpassed any other year in the respect that i was more challenged and more convicted, and more frustrated that any other year that I have been. 

As a leader, you hope to encourage your students in their faith, decisions, and challenge them while they are in the grips of finding who they are in this whole new world that has opened up to them. You don't expect to have obstacles and distractions thrust upon you personally that hinder your ability to lead.  This week I dealt with my frustration with a leader from another church who didn't live up to my idea of what a follower of Christ should look like.  I didn't handle the idea of conflict well.  I felt myself moving toward bitterness, anger, and frustration.  Luckily, I have an amazing husband and wonderful friend who were there to struggle, and exhort, and basically tame me. I eventually used biblical principle to deal with the above mentioned leader and confronted the situation (if you know me, you know that I can gag just thinking about confrontation). The outcome was less than I hoped for because they definitely didn't respond with an open heart, but I definitely felt God working through me.  It's a funny thing how our God works, because just hours after this was over, we were asked for help from teens from another church about (yep, you guessed it) resolution of a conflict.  Had they come to me just hours earlier, I would definitely not been able to guide them in any sort of biblical way because of my own bitter heart. I felt the Holy Spirit move me that night.  I heard whispers of encouragement me and and blessing because of my obedience as I gave Godly counsel to young ladies I barely knew as they shed honest tears about their conflict.  It was amazing.  I don't know if I'm even (I'm actually sure that I'm not) giving it the colorful wording that it deserves.  It was powerful. 

As the week progressed (yes this was just about day 2) God started just moving in every area of our group.  The teens were bold, and overcome with fire for their faith.  They made decisions of action, and choices that are going to be very hard to put into motion now that they are home.  It was wonderful. 

I am an impatient person.  I want what I want when I want it.  I have to have instant gratification.  I have to have a plan so that I know that I'll get what I want.  When I pray, I want answers.  When I begin worship, I want to feel God move.  It has been a very long time since I have been able to consistently worship.  I have been sporadic on being able to feel the intimacy with God in a worship setting.  I believe now, that this is because I went into it with a heart of impatience.  I wasn't waiting for God, I was trying to force my way into worship. He's always there, but I wouldn't know it because it's all about me. We all read in the book of Psalms this week a little and of course that little word "Selah" is used throughout at the end of  verses.  I knew little or nothing of the meaning behind the word except for the fact that it meant "wait". In doing a little research I found that the word selah was also used as a change or shift of the music played during that time. It's a bridge connecting one phase of the music to the next.

 As we read, I was just fixed on that word.  I liked it.  I like anything that reminds me to hold on to my horses. Then the word changed for me as we did the ropes course on Wednesday.  We did what was called the "Leap of Faith".  I usually don't do ropes.  I let the kids get out their crazy and I watch and make fun of them.  I was basically forced into this one.  You can't exactly call it peer pressure, but I did it.      If i can, I will just paint this picture for you (there are pictures of me doing this and I will post them when I get them).  Picture it, a 35 foot telephone pole with nothing at the top, except a rag about 10 feet away.  The pole is only about as wide as your feet.  you climb to the very top, figure out a way to stand up without falling off, and jump off and try to grab the rag on your way down.  So, as I was making my way up the pole, I was sure to look up, not down.  I was sure to ignore the teasing coming from down below, and I was sure to watch my footing so that I didn't fall off.  I steadied myself and stood at the very top of this pole.  I looked at this rag ahead of me, and had no idea exactly how far I had to jump to reach it.  I didn't look down, and I was confident that I was safe with the harness that protected me.  I took a few seconds to just settle myself and then i jumped.  I grabbed the rag, and then i was lowered to the ground (trying to awkwardly hide the "harness wedgie" that had ensnared me).

 Only later did I reflect on the few seconds on top of that pole.  I had already done the hard part.  I had gotten on the first step, and then I had climbed, and then I had turned around, and then there I was, just.. well.. waiting.  I was gathering myself, i was reflecting on what I had just done, and I was bracing myself for the next step.  The next action I had to perform. I waited, and then jumped.  Now, this word has a whole new meaning for me.  If I am in the midst of conflict, it means stop and wait.  If I want to pray, it means settle down.  If i want to worship, it means pause and reflect.  If I want to hear what God says, I have to be patient enough to listen, and slow to react, or I might fall.

I am just in awe of how God can use the ministry with which He has called our family to deepen my faith, and strengthen my spirit.  I'm overwhelmed.  God is good.

1 comment:

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