The tale of my softening heart

[Day 2 of 7in7.

I am having the HARDEST time writing today.  My friends are all writing funny and interesting things, so I feel all this pressure.

Today was one of those days in ministry that I think people dream about when they think of ‘ministry’.  They don’t happen very often, but today…was a good day, guys.  

Here’s the story of my softening heart]

7:45 AM

I awoke with a hard and despondent heart; uninterested in God and apathetic to the glory of Him.  I felt drained just thinking about the day that was ahead of me. But God knows better than me what makes me happy. He’s kind of good that way.

9:00 AM

Had breakfast with one of the funniest, most authentic and easiest to talk to people I know.

We talked about Jef (with one f) and Sean and marriage and sex and how Jesus intersects with all those things (which He does).

Somehow, just telling her about the hardness of my heart helped.  Somehow, just saying it out loud left me softer.  And hearing her talk about how much she longs to love Jesus more made me want to love Jesus more.

10:30 AM

I left my breakfast and sped to the office for a 10:30 planning session with two of my co-workers.

We have been working together for years now, and man.  They’re a gift.  We’ve fought pretty hard to get to where we are: a place past insecurity.   We treasure each other’s strengths and are comfortable with our weaknesses. 

Not everyone gets to work with people they love.  Not everyone gets to do ministry with people they love.  I get to do both.

11:45 AM

My 11:30 meeting began at 11:45.  It was 75 jam-packed minutes.

It was 5 women downloading to 1 of our male supervisors about all we’ve learned in the last five years about women’s training.

We had so much to say. And every idea spurred more thoughts. And I left feeling encouraged.  And thankful.  I get to work for leaders who view themselves as learners.  I have been given the freedom to fail and learn and grow in women’s ministry.

1:00 PM

I ran into our staff meeting and everyone was quiet and still, getting ready to pray and worship together as a team.

I sat there in the dark of the room for five minutes, begging God to soften my heart.  The worship music washed over me and I tried to focus on God but I was distracted by my idolatry and my hardness of heart.

But my day had loosed the ketchup bottle a little.  And after five quiet minutes, my heart began to change. And I spoke to my Dad.

2:30 PM

After Staff meeting I met with two of my resident interns.  I love them.

They both had teaching opportunities last night, so we processed together all the ways the Gospel is good news for those of us who deal with the insecurity and the fear and the sin  that’s revealed in the pursuit of teaching God’s Word.

4:00 PM

I met with a leader in our Women’s Development Program.  It was one of the more humbling meetings I’ve had in recent months.  Man.  She is authentic.  And real.  And humble.  And willing to do whatever God wants.  And by the time that meeting wrapped up, my eyes had teared up several times, and my heart was softer than it’s been in a while.

6:00 PM

I listened to my boss teach 150 women about the Word of God.  It was hot in the room – I know he hates that.  It was 3 hours of solid teaching.

I hung out with his wife after work yesterday, so I know he prepared well into the night.

I gotta say: it’s hard to doubt God’s love for me when I think of the way He has brought me to serve at this church under elders like mine.

8:00 PM

Met with one of my favorite people in the world about some stuff she’s struggling with.  I wasn’t trying to be strategic and I didn’t have a plan, and as a result I wasn’t the best ‘professional’ version of me.

But she’s my people.  So she doesn’t get ‘professional’ me. She gets me.

She wants the Gospel of Jesus to mean more to her tomorrow than it does today.  And as I listened to her, I heard my heart  – by the grace of God – echo loudly inside my chest: me too.  

Now

And I’m writing this now, on my couch with my two roommates and my heart is really full.

And look at that day.  Man.

Who gets to spend their day like that?

And what kind of God takes a girl with a hard heart and blesses her until it softens?

My God.  My God does that.

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