Here’s why it’s worth it

OK.  So, yesterday was hard.  Tonight’s not going to be much easier — it’s another full evening as I make dinner for a couple who just had a baby, bring the kids to yet another scrimmage baseball game, and Martin has kinship, so he won’t be there to help.

After yesterday’s post, my precious friend Kathy said this:

Karen, you’ve captured the price we pay for leadership, participation in God’s good work, and, raising children, and keeping a house going. It’s not easy – it’s why so many people drop off. It’s not what you are going through that (ultimately) matters – it is what you are going to. There will be fruit for all this. Better days, even worse days ahead too – but a reward for the faithful that will make the days more than worth it.

Last night at kinship, I had a couple of experience where I thought, “This is why it’s worth it.”

  1. One of the people at there last night, I’d never met.  A young married girl had brought her mom along to visit.  Early in our meeting, we split into groups of two, and I was with the new lady, Cathy.  We had an “assignment” to discuss… and when that was done, we just chatted for a few.  In some distress, Cathy poured out something along the lines of, “My husband was just diagnosed yesterday with celiac disease, and I’m really overwhelmed.”  !!!!! Well, golly!  Know anyone who is experienced in eating gluten free because of her own celiac disease???!!???  Anyone who has walked that road, and can now help others navigate it???  Uh huh.  Yours truly.  I about cried because of the heart of God, tenderly caring for this woman, who, 20 minutes previous, was absolutely unknown to me.  Yet, He placed her next to me, we ended up being grouped together…  Who better, in that room full of strangers, than me, to be able to encourage her greatly??  God knew that.  And, afterwards, we talked for a long time — I gave her as many resources I could think of to send her home with… then, got home myself, and after eating a really late dinner, sent her an e-mail, as I had promised to do, with more info.
  2. Worship wasn’t great.  It wasn’t awful, but it wasn’t great.  I chatted with Doug, the leader, about it afterwards, and we both had a few ideas to hopefully, make it go better next week.  I wasn’t mightily discouraged or anything, but I certainly was thinking, “Bummer.”  So, I go over into the kitchen to get a few grapes and a cup of coffee, and a different young married girl named Priscilla (love that name) says to me, “You’re my new hero.”  ????? Well, I don’t think I’m really her hero.  But, we talk, and she tells me that she had been thinking, “I’d like to learn how to play the guitar.  I don’t know any girls who play the guitar, though…”  And, here she comes to kinship, and I’m leading what I think is a fairly lame worship set, yet she is just glowing, both in worship, and from the excitement of discovering that I play guitar!  And, Martin and I have a guitar to sell that’s right in their price range — her husband wants to play, too.  We’d been planning on selling it on eBay, but when I told Martin about Priscilla, he said, “That would be even better, to sell it to someone we know.  For less than we could get on eBay, just to encourage them.”  AND, the lead electric guitarist in our church had just asked me a couple of weeks ago, “Hey, do you know any young guitar players who need mentoring or a few free lessons?”  I didn’t at the time, but now I do!!!

Ha!  That’s the Body of Christ in action, folks.  I SO SO SO love how God draws us together, and uses each of our strengths to help others, and provides a way to strengthen our own weaknesses and meet our own needs, by others in the Body of Christ.

You know… it’s possible to be a Christian and not go to church.  But, I don’t know why anyone would want to.  You have something to give that others need.  And, others have things that you need.


About Karen Joy

I'm a partially-homeschooling mother of six -- 3 boys ages 19, 17 and 15 years old, and three girls: 11, 8, and 3. I like birding, reading, writing, organic gardening, singing, playing guitar, hiking, the outdoors, and books. I very casually lead a very large group of homeschooling families in the Phoenix area. I have a dear hubby who designs homes for a local home builder and who is the worship pastor of our church. I live in the desert, which I used to hate, but now appreciate.

Posted on March 4, 2009, in Celiac Disease, Christian Living, Christianity, Encouragement, Friendships, God/Christianity/Church, Guitar, The Dear Hubby, Vineyard Phoenix, Worship. Bookmark the permalink. 8 Comments.

  1. I was working on a 101 random things about me…for my own therapy…wasn’t sure what I could come up with! Anyway, I put on the list that I am thrilled when I know I have been used by God! It gives me goosebumps to hear your story and sense how encouraged you were to be where God wanted you to be, doing as He asked, so He could accomplish His purpose! I love to be the giver in these situations and am humbled when it is my time to be the receiver!

  2. This is awesome…I am so glad that you had a testimony to share after your test yesterday. 🙂 God is so good and yes he cares about every aspect of us….hallelujah!!!

  3. what I love about these two encounters is how fitted they were to not only your experiences, but your personality. I see you as a person who loves to equip others with info and tools– just what’s needed for people looking for support in a celiac diet or learning an instrument.

  4. Wow! That made me all teary. Both of those encounters had God’s fingerprints all over them. It is so neat when God knows just what we need, and brings along just the right person at the right time. But, sometimes it is even more special to be that one that He uses to fill the need of someone else, isn’t it? Thanks so much for sharing that.

  5. Those “chance encounters” make it all worth it. I am so glad that it ended up better than it started. I have those days quite often. :0)

    You are blessing to many people. I appreciate your honesty and humor through it all!

  6. Did I know you were wheat-free? If I did, I had forgotten. I’m wheat-free too, though I don’t have celiacs.

    Isn’t God good? And I love seeing the Body of Christ blessing its various parts. Very encouraging [smile].

  7. What an encouraging story – that’s how it should be – God working through us each day despite how we are feeling because He is so good and knows what we all need and when. Love your blog!!

  8. I’m behind on my reading and just catching up with your fabulous blog and had to tell you what a powerful testimony this post is to our loving Father! We’re blessed when we’re able to bless others, and when the Father puts those opportunities in our paths.

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