Be Strong and Couragous

To continue on my camp adventure, God is still cracking me up.  The kids I teach to know this because I confess it all the time, I am afraid to speak in front of people.  I do it, I have a blast but my stomach is always in knots, my heart is racing and I sometimes I feel sick.

In one of the dean team meetings, we were discussing a Bible Lesson and who could teach it six times during rotation.  I loved this section of scripture and so I was so excited, telling about all the different lessons someone could teach.  The other two deans said, “Sounds like you should teach it.”

This was both exciting and terrifying but I agreed.  I felt God telling me to teach it.  I wrote my lesson, wrote a melodrama to add to it, got my props, practiced.  I was still nervous but excited.  Part of me would rather stay behind the scenes, the other part of me wants to be front and center.  I struggle with this all the time.  Usually my shy, fearful, introverted nature takes over and I stay behind the scenes.  I pray both ways, I’ll stay behind the scenes or I’ll be front and center.  Good thing God is God or He’d be so utterly irritated with me He’d walk away.

I pray, I plan, I write, I rewrite, I practiced on my son, I practiced on my own.  My lesson to teach the kids last Sunday at church was on Joshua 1, be strong and courageous, be stong and courageous, be strong and very courageous.  Yeah, it was for me.  The kids just got to listen in.  I’m strong, I’m courageous, God can and will use me, I will let Him.

Ever notice that sometimes, once you surrender everything you’re afraid of and you think you know exactly what His plan is He takes it away?  Again, He cracks me up.  I’m excited and nervous about teaching to the camp kids.  I’ve never done it and quite frankly feel inadequate with all the preachers and student ministers and children’s ministers that attend there.  The kids don’t scare me it’s teaching in the presence of so many Godlier adults then myself but I will do it.  I will be strong and courageous.

We have a meeting while the kids are on rotation, our week of camp to dean team is still a few days away.  We’re going over last minute things and notice we are teaching the same Bible story 4 times in one day.  Not good.  I finally say I could not teach my lesson but go a different direction.  We could do 30 minutes of memory work.  It’s agreed upon.  Memory work games, no lesson.  I’m both relieved and disappointed.

It was as though God was saying will you step out of your comfort zone for Me?  Will you trust Me to speak through you even if you are afraid?  Will you be strong and courageous?  Then when I surrender and I pray, prepare and practice God changed the plans.

The funny thing about this is the lesson I wrote is one of our lessons for VBS this year and there is no teacher to teach it.  I was asked on Sunday if I’d teach that lesson.  Big cheeky grin.  The lesson God wanted me to teach wasn’t for camp but God was preparing it for me to teach at VBS.  How cool is that.

Make the plans you think God wants you to do but be flexible, sometimes those plans change and God can use you and your plan in another way.

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