God Sees Potential in Every One of Us!October 22, 2016
Once upon a time there was a shy, quiet, and socially awkward little girl…. If you had told that ‘little girl’ that she would one day grow up to be a woman in leadership, she would have timidly looked down at the ground and with great respect mutter “I doubt that highly”. God saw my potential and He began His work!
I was raised in a loving, Christian home where God was pre-eminent. I gave my heart to Jesus at the age of 5 and have lived the testimony, “Jesus has the power to keep”. Even as a young girl, He began preparing me for leadership roles. My best friend, Marion, was a pastor’s kid; her mother was my mentor, unbeknown to her. My parents understood the importance of sheltering, praying, and supporting the pastoral couple; so we did many things together and both Marion and I were considered the “other daughter” of each family. I was sure that I was going to grow up and be a pastor’s wife!
As I entered into the gangly teenage years, I began to feel a pull to Christian service –I was going to be a missionary in Japan teaching English. Why Japan? I have no idea except maybe it was because of my friendship with a Japanese foreign-exchange student, Chemi. Anyhow, off to college I went – single – and I was going to stay that way – I was NOT going to Bible College to get a husband! However, God had other plans. In my Junior year a certain young man stole my heart and we married one week after my graduation. John still had a year left of his BA (Theology), but that year I earned my BA, Mrs, and PhT (Bachelor of Arts in Religious Education, Mrs. Walker, and Pulling Hubby Through). Early in our ministry, John and I determined that as a couple we would minister together – Whether I was home carrying out the best-ever-call-from-God – that of ministering and leading our own daughters – or whether I was working in the church fulfilling various leadership roles, we would be partners for Him. Throughout the last 30 years God has seen fit to allow us to be partners in His mission; He has refined John as ‘His’ pastor and He has led me to discover my own personal calling as well.
My life did not follow my youthful dreams and inspirations – exactly. God was preparing me every step along the way. He had a plan for me, and He has a plan for you. Each of us are leaders in some capacity: mothers, teachers, pastors, pastor’s wives, lay leaders and etc. As I partnered with my husband, I began using the tools and training God provided. My passion became evident as I assumed different roles (Sunday School Superintendent; Handbell Director, Children’s Church Director, Congregation and Regional Quiz Director, and so forth) – I loved to work with children and I loved to help and equip teachers to be the best they can. I became a full-time elementary teacher at a Christian school; I mentored teachers there, worked as the Student Services Coordinator; pursued two more degrees, and now I teach at the university level impacting teachers to be teacher/leaders. So, I did become a Pastor’s wife AND an educator. Isn’t God wonderful!?
Here I am, some 40 years later; I still would not call myself a leader, it has been a struggle for me to embrace the ‘title’ (BTW: The degree I just completed this past July is in Educational Leadership and Management – Go figure! – God has a sense of humor). Penning this bio/story to share took me a long time … I have struggled with my sense of worth from day one and to say I am a leader runs against my grain. But, this is not God-honoring, He has used me in the past, and He will continue to do so. Presently, I am taking a ‘sabbatical’ and inquiring and relying on God to show me the next role in ministry that I am to assume. I trust I will be amazed at what He can do with me – He can ‘do’ for you too – if you just let Him have His Way. God sees potential in every one of His creations, He molds us, loves us, and empowers us to be His hands and feet when we give Him license to do so. In doing this, He grows us through the roles He deems best for us and in return we glorify Him.