UpBeat Spiritual Living: Called in Small Ways
© 2012 Kebba Buckley Button. World Rights Reserved
It’s fascinating to hear people talk about their life’s purpose. Many believe they have yet to find their purpose. They take workshops in finding your purpose. They pay for executive coaching to evolve their understanding of their purpose. In workshops, people frequently talk about starting their own new ministry or nonprofit organization: a boy’s ranch, a food bank, an agency to reunite adoptees with their birth parents. The list goes on and on. I rarely hear people talking about their life’s purpose in a supporting role. Well, maybe those people aren’t at the life-purpose worshops.
What gifts have you been given? Are you an extrovert or an introvert? Are you great at greeting, hosting, comforting, organizing, teaching? Do you make beautiful documents or signs? Are you wonderful at accounting or recordkeeping?Do you have an eye for arranging spaces or creating art? Are you a genius at organizing kids into a killer play? Do you find social media to be super easy, both to do and to explain? Do you sing? Can you walk and chew gum, or give out programs at the door of the event while simultaneously smiling? Can you easily plan, buy for, and prepare meals for groups? All these activities provide the glue and the workings of groups. You are needed! Existing nonprofits, churches, schools, and civic groups all need you!
To discern where you fit in to help the needs of the world, recall the hints you have already received. Where has God been using you? Where do you feel led? What social cause really ticks you off or makes your heart sing? What moves you? Jesus, in Matthew 6:21, tells us: “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”
Notice that the Divine tugs lightly on your heart on a daily basis. This can take the form of your intensely needing to stare at a book on a shelf, perhaps a Heavenly hint that you should read it. Or a song is playing in a store, and later you can’t get it out of your head, perhaps a Godly clue that you need to focus on that subject. Or you may find yourself in the middle of a scene involving others, and you unreasonably know just what to do.
Ask yourself if you have ever been in the middle of a scenario like the following; then realize, “of course I have!” The scenario: I was getting out of my car in the parking lot of a favorite grocery store. It was a mundane moment in an afternoon that seemed so average. From the area where I had parked, I could easily have gotten to the door of the store by walking up a row a little to my left or up a row a little to my right. I was strongly moved to take the row to my right. I wondered why. Suddenly, a loose balloon wafted just past my face, moving fast.to my right. I looked to my left, and there was a father-son pair looking distressed. They were black-haired, tan-skinned and wearing the traditional loose clothing of perhaps Afghanistan; the son may have been six years old. To get this scene, you have to know I am very fair, with blue eyes, and at the time, my blonde hair was very long; I was wearing a knee-length dress and pumps. I was the picture of an American woman in the middle of a Springtime business day.
Now, suddenly, I was chasing that runaway balloon like my life depended on it. I was unaware of starting to run. I just suddenly was filled with the absolute imperative of catching that balloon, which was moving fast to my right as well as rising. When I got that string in my hand, I was filled with a passionate thrill of victory. I yelled something intelligent like, “YESSSS!” Then I turned to see the amazed looks on the faces of the father and son. They were astounded and delighted. When the joyful blonde lady handed over the string of the balloon, what must they have felt? The father looked into my eyes and said, in a serious tone I will long remember, “Tink yo leddy”. In a moment, I realized these immigrants were dealing with being new in a country where they must learn a new language, and where they are probably routinely mistaken for Spanish-speaking. Yet a blonde lady would run after the son’s balloon. They will be telling that story for many years to come. I had been called to brighten their day, to encourage and uplift them, to give them some normal friendliness from a stranger.
Are you really called to start your own ministry or nonprofit? Or are you called to be one of the kind and observant, filling in little needs that serve in large ways? Listen, and follow. And catch every balloon.
● Rev. Kebba Buckley Button is the author of the 2012 book, Peace Within: Your Peaceful Inner Core.
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