Out of my comfort zone... and it's not such a bad place to be...
I have been growing and stretching in ways that have gotten me out of my comfort zone. I have been challenged to grow and to lead and do things I usually shy away from. I am finding out that I can do so much more than I ever thought possible. And the things I am not-so-good at... well, I am learning that I need to be in a place that if it does fall on me to do those things, how to do it with a smile then trust God to let the pieces fall into place. When God is in the midst of you serving, it is not you, but God.
My confidence has been growing. It has even started showing up in other areas of my life. Yesterday, I was treating myself to Starbucks (thanks, those of you who provided me with gift cards for Christmas!). I was running around after work and did not know HOW I would stay awake for Wednesday night services. While I was waiting for my coffee, the barista asked me if I was having a good day (did I look that tired?) and I actually engaged in a conversation with her. This is something I usually do not do. But I did. It was good. I walked away determined to keep taking those little steps out of my comfort zone... and just see where they lead.
Skip to church...
I am helping lead the children's Wednesday night services. I enjoy it. It is magical for me... I am so exhausted on Wednesday nights. Getting everyone ready and up to church can be a struggle. But once I'm there and see the kids, it all lifts. I am energized, headaches go away, and words just seem to come. God is there. God uses me. Me! He takes this person, who constantly doubts herself, who doesn't know what she is doing, who is not comfortable in front of people and allows her to take part in His work. I am constantly amazed.
I had thought that me doing so much more serving would be hard on the kids, but they love it. Their faces light up when they see me with the microphone. My face lights up when they tell me I did a good job, and I've even heard "I'm proud of you, mom!" It has given me so many opportunities to grow closer to my family, form wonderful relationships with others, but more importantly, to grow closer to God.
... and it feels good!