1Corinthians 9:18 "What then is my reward? Just this: that in preaching the gospel I may offer it free of charge, and so not make use of my rights in preaching it." (NIV)

My name is Kate.  I strive to live my life every single day for the Glory of God.  But do I succeed at that?  Absolutely not.  I fall short, every single day.  But I am saved by the Blood of Christ; and I strive to further His Kingdom, even though I know I will fall short.  Why?  Because it is what I am called to do.  Through music and relationships.  Those are the gifts I was entrusted with, and since I did not ask for them, I had better use them to the best of my ability.  I will not hide them under a rock, instead I will stand on The Rock and use them for The Glory of God!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

My ministry

So--since I mentioned in my first post (scroll down to read it) that part of this blog will be about my ministry(ies), I thought I would share more about that.

So--where do I see myself in ministry? Well...that is a loaded question. The first thing I mentioned above was music. Where in music do I see myself? I am not sure yet. I sing, I love to sing, I'm told I sing very well. I think I sing well. I have been told that my voice appeals to all ages, which I think is probably a pretty rare thing. Do I want to be a professional singer? Not really, I'm not aspiring to be anyway. Would I turn down the opportunity if it were presented to me? No, probably not. I would want to give it a shot. But I really don't see that as my place--not as a solo artist anyway. I really see myself more in a place like Christy Nockels. Maybe not quite so focused on the music as her...but then again, you never know. But--the types of ministry that she is in, speaking to women, singing in praise/worship bands, staying home with her children--that is exactly where I see myself.

I also recently became more aware of the Passion conferences. I have volunteered with them twice now (this is also how I became more familiar with Christy Nockels, since she sings with them), and what I love about volunteering with Passion is connecting with the college students. I could stand there all day long, and just talk to them. Find out where they are from, what they think of the conference, and if they are willing to tell me more about themselves I am willing to listen! I could honestly just talk to people all day long, just to find out more about them. That is where my gift in relationships comes in. I had never really considered the fact that this was a gift, until my friends started to point out that I was really good at bringing groups of people together, and staying in contact (thank heavens for email!!) And once I started to 'watch' myself in social situations, I started to realize that they were right. I make friends very quickly. I guess I had never considered it a gift before, until I realized that not everyone does that. Now, it might surprise you to know that I actually consider myself to be a shy person. And I really am. In a group setting, say at someone's house, I tend to be very quiet and just observe what is going on. I will never fight for the spotlight--I'm one of 4 kids--I don't win that fight ever. But if I am put in a position of being 'in charge'-like say at Passion -where my most recent job was to talk to students and greet them- I can very easily go out of my way to say hello and strike up a conversation. Where as if I were the student on the other side of that, I would wait for someone to approach me.

I also have a great ability for event planning, in my head I am very organized. Now, you wouldn't know it to look at my house. There are papers, and other things, piled everywhere. My house is clean...just very cluttered. Some days are worse than others. It figures that whenever my Grandmother is here it is at its worst. Grammie--I promise it doesn't look like that all the time!! :) I'm at a loss what to do with paper, and mail (again, thank heavens for email). But put me in charge of planning an event, or a night out with the girls (and guys), and I'll have every detail down to the T.

So--how do these 3 things mix together? I haven't figured that out yet. Being involved with a ministry like Passion, obviously fits these things. However, Passion is not looking for new people. And that's okay. I think I would rather go in on the ground floor of something new anyway. I love helping something new get off of the ground.

Recently, I was in Austin. And through some (I believe) providential connections, I started playing phone tag, and then emails (after leaving Austin) with Paul Vick. He has a ministry to college students, he travels around the country ministering to them. He's also a musician and a pastor. Could this be a ministry for me to get involved with? I'm not sure yet, but I am excited to meet this man and talk about the possibility. I am going back down to Austin again in May, and will meet with him while I'm there.

This brings me to my last thought for this post. Where do I see a family fitting in to this? Well, currently I am single...so it isn't an immediate concern. But it is something that I think about a lot, naturally. I'm 28 years old, of course I think about it. Most little girls grow up knowing that they want to be a mom, or a doctor, or an astronaut, or a nurse, or a teacher, or a pastor's wife. I think little girls have a very good sense of what their lives will look like down the road, even if they don't consciously know it. When I was 5, I wrote in a Kindergarten class, that I wanted to be a Mom and a Car Washer (remember the days when all gas stations were full serve, and they would squeegie your windshield?) That's who I wanted to be. The squeegie girl. :) Cute right?

Well, I have put my dreams of being a car washer aside, but not a mom. It is something I desire greatly, and see a lot of my 'ministry' being to my own children. But that will just have to wait, obviously. But what else? I'm not just someone's future mother. There is more to me than that. Well--I also see myself as a musicians wife. And I think this is where a lot of my music may come in to play. I don't necessarily mean a professional musician's wife....although I think that would be a life that I would very easily adapt to. If I married a professional musician, I could easily fulfill my 'music' portion of my ministry by singing occasionally with him. I can see that happening. I hadn't really considered that either, until my friend Jen told me that she saw me doing that. She told me that she could see me doing what Christy Nockels does (which is what spurred that piece on). That she wouldn't be surprised if I did end up married to a professional musician, and then could be a stay at home mom, but also travel with him and sing with him. I have to admit, it is appealing--and would be a dream come true to do such a thing. But even marrying a Worship Leader who works at the local church would be wonderful. I can see that happening too.  But, for all I know--I may not even marry a musician--and that would be okay too.  I just want to marry someone who would support me in this venture if this is the road I started to take.

But alas--as I said, I am single--so that also will have to wait. So I'm also not only someone's future wife. There is still more to me than that. And I think this is the point I am trying to get to. It took me 26 years to figure out that I'm not just someone's future wife. It took me 26 years to realize that I had to be someone, in order to be someone. Make sense? And not that I wasn't a 'someone' before...but my goal before was always to get married, settle down, have children. If that had happened at an early age for me, I think I would have lost myself, and been pretty miserable.

What I've found out about myself, is that I am strong, independent, beautiful, feminine, smart, fun, and the list goes on and on. This is not about bragging rights. If you know me at all, you know I am the last person on earth to shout my own praises. I much prefer that it doesn't happen. But I say all of this, especially to young women, that you must find your self worth in The Lord. You must find your self worth in what you do, day to day. You must find your self worth in YOU! Otherwise, you will loose yourself while trying to take care of everyone else. Because that is what we as women do. We put everyone else first, our own self comes dead last; every time. But what I have learned, is that although I come last a lot--which is okay--I also know when to put myself first. And that is so important.

What did it for me? Well, a combination of things I think. Mary Kay for one. I am a Mary Kay consultant, and I have learned more about myself through this company than I think in any other way. This is where I found my beauty and independence and confidence. Also through my family. I live right across the street from my parents currently. And although I hardly ever see them (which is crazy since our houses look right at each other) there is a comfort in knowing they are right there. There is a comfort in living on the street that I grew up on, that I am so familiar with. This gave me more independence than I ever expected. Go figure. Some people go to college, and then go off to see the world. I went to college, stayed near Boston for a few years, and then moved back home. I never expected to move out of my hometown again once I came back. I love it here, this is where I belong. But much to my surprise, the purpose in gaining my independence by moving home, was to prepare me to move away. Ironic isn't it? I moved home to find my independence to then go out in to the world. To each her own, right?
So- I am moving. Where? I'm not exactly sure yet. Austin seems like the most likely place right now--but I am still figuring that out. The Lord has opened what appears to be a few doors for me there, hence my visit again coming up in May. I need to see if they are really open doors, or just open connections with people. Either way, my connection with Austin is ordained by God. It's pretty amazing.

So--that was a very long post. I think this will be the way of it on this site. I'm sure I'll have some short ones too along the way, but I would wager to say that most will be pretty long. Once I get going--it's hard to get me to stop. Just imagine what it would be like if I were speaking to you in person. :) When I was little my parents used to say "tell us the abridged version Kate" Well...there won't be much for abridged versions here--just to warn you ;)

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