Thursday, January 04, 2007

the next steps

thank you for your support - i felt it. the meeting(s) went really well, very different from what i hoped/feared/expected - and that is really good. i think my biggest fears, which i expressed to him, was either being shut down or sent out - too small or too big - and i got real, interactive questions, wisdom and encouragement. what i liked best was that he pushed me, he didn't just listen and say 'go for it', but he challenged some thoughts i had, taught me about the community and really interacted with me on this.

a lot was redeemed for me just in the dialog and interaction. i also talked about how freaked out i have been by men in authority, especially spiritual authority and how far too many times in my life that kept me silent. just talking to him in and of itself was a huge step for me, and having him really interact with my thoughts was so honoring.

he did say that he has seen so many 'idea people' just be that and only that - idea people. lots of talk, little action. and from my own life i can see that is true - so the HUGE idea wasn't where he resonated with me, he did though encourage me to begin testing the call, begin to see if it's real, if it works and if it's really a good fit for me. i liked that, i guess i just assumed since it made me so uncomfortable it must be from god. i don't think i would have made this one up. it's not like hearing the call to beach ministry or something. there really isn't anything glamorous about serving the poor. but knowing that i can say 'no' is quite empowering. it takes on a different perspective, i am not a slave to it, but a willing participant.

he also talked about the dynamics between the local churches and how a lot a time and energy can be burned up in the creating of the networks. he encouraged me to get to know the people who are already doing the work and get a feel for what exists already. pastors in our community are quite transient, so i think i'll need to be a bit more subversive and find those in the community who have this passion instead of the power structures who come and go.

there are three women who are doing really good work in the community already and he encouraged me to shadow them for some time. two of them are already good friends at church, and we have already begun talking about the work they are doing, both through the church and in the community. the other woman is the head of the local food bank, so i'm going to volunteer there to get to know her, the people she is helping and the community itself. this will fold beautifully into the work liam is already doing in town as part of his job.

i left feeling like i had real, tangible goals. i feared i would leave feeling overwhelmed and drained, even before i started. i don't. i am hopeful, excited and looking forward to getting my feet wet.

5 comments:

anj said...

Awesome! What does your inner Light say? it sounds like he kept leading you back to that, with a lot of honesty. I am excited to see how this process unfolds for you.

steph said...

I agee, this is awesome! You saw much of "community" in this meeting and what we have learned out here is that partnering is a huge part of how the Kingdom works. Joining with others who are doing the work and finding your passion come to life and from there you are lead into your unique niche. Bobbie, you are finding "you" and my heart leaps with joy to hear this. As you well know this is the cry of my heart for each women. Not in isolation that we find our identity but in community, in relationships, in sacred space.
Look forward to hearing how this journey continues for you.

Connie said...

Great. This is really exactly what is needed at this time and I confirm the process and your response to it. The idea is huge...and testing is exactly what this needs. I am so happy for you that you have had an experience of a male authority figure which was positive and life-giving, thought provoking and helpful. I'm cheering from the sidelines.

When we talked on the phone before Christmas, I think I said something about Canada being a good place to try the 'huge' idea. I still think this is true, however recently I came across statistics which indicated that if Canadians gave as much to charity as Americans, charities in Canada would have 9 billion more dollars to play with. I suspect that this comes from our dependence upon goverment run programs for the social net. However, rather than thinking of this as a negative, I think it is possible to see this as untapped resource! God Bobbie.

hanni said...

So nice to hear someone talk about their 'call' to something with hope and excitement.
Congrats on your conversation with your pastor...be celebrating those big steps you're taking...it makes the stretching outside comfort zones easier and worth it if you reward yourself somehow.

judi said...

ah, how blessed are the wet feet of them that bring good news :-) sorry, couldn't help myself there! sounds like you are off to a roaring start, you go!! following someone around, asking questions, is great counsel, don't stop!

judi