Tossing More Spiritual Gumption in the Game

It’s time to put a little more skin in the game. Scared or not it’s time. Time to stop pitching a fit over fruit that isn’t growing based on seeds I’ve buried without watering. This ministry, this calling handed to me from the Lord many sleepless nights ago to equip multiple generations to grow in their affection and understanding of God’s Word hasn’t gotten my best effort.Why? Why, you ask?Because it scares the stink out of me. I’m scared to death to get tar and feathered over what I do NOT know long before I ever get the opportunity to point out Who I DO know.I am not an exceptional theologian. I am not full of indispensable wisdom. I do not have ideas that are perpetually on the cutting edge of creative ministry. I do not know how to keep my house consistently cleaned while raising three active kids. I do not know how to handle every conflict/resolution with zero lingering collateral damages. I am not old enough. I am not young enough. I do not know how to make a really great Thanksgiving turkey like my grandmother and mother. I do not know how to eliminate the piles of papers assaulting my kitchen counter. I do not know how to balance and actively engage in every elementary school or activity parent group known to man. I do not know how to carry out all the 347,298 ideas I have floating around on Pinterest boards. I do not know how to sleep during nights where you ache so deep with a broken heart that you spend an entire night wrestling with your pillow. I do not know how to get myself pulled together enough to send Merry Christmas cards that turned into Happy New Year cards before they subsequently turn into Happy Valentine Day cards on time. I do not know how to get my kids from the nursery to world launch without somewhere in there having some life experience of theirs that ends up broken on a counselors’ couch. I do not know how to navigate being a public figure without it looking sloppy and messy and extremely awkward. I do not know how to maintain an audience or build a platform without a fair amount of failing. I do not know how to consistently maintain balance in my calendar or relationships. I do not have twelve easy steps to make this shindig called life work.I got caught in a conversation with my daughter the other day that has kept me shaken up and I keep regurgitating the exchange. The question I asked was “Who does God say that you are when He looks at you?” Without so much as blinking she immediately started to list off what she DOES for God. I immediately swooped in with karate chop action to sear that line of thinking right off the mat. “Baby girl, when God looks at you He doesn’t start by seeing what you DO or how much you KNOW, He starts by seeing who you ARE. Brilliant. Creative. Servant-hearted. Tender. Loving. And your giggle…with that sweet snaggle tooth smile….hmmm…melts His heart.”Let’s be real. Most women suffer through life attempting to live up to God’s love based on what we DO, not who we ARE. We need to stop it. All those things that I don’t know or what I do or don’t do “right” are bullying the spiritual gumption right outta me. I think they are bullying you out of who you are uniquely called to be too. I mean, for me personally, to toss my name in the ring with a thick line-up of already existing incredible Christian writers, speakers and Bible teachers?! Geez. Heaven knows I’m just a small town girl with an Apparel Design degree that stuck her nose in the Bible because she didn’t have answers to life’s laundry list and hasn’t come up for air since. I’m certainly not qualified to say I’m a certified writer, speaker or Bible teacher. Bible teaching is God’s job, but it certainly is my job to facilitate a whole heck of a lot more opportunities to learn more about the words that birth abundant life and to lay those out so we can learn together. Yet, doubts are bullying me around the spiritual playground and keeping me from the one thing I do know…the one PERSON I am passionately obsessed with KNOWING.I am obsessed with knowing more of Jesus. So much less of my DOING and so much more of Jesus KNOWING.Not the Jesus on those watercolor pictures somewhere deep in the basement of a main street Sunday School classroom. No, the One that knows how to unlock the secrets to life is the Jesus that is looking back from a wild beach laughing with his hair blowing free in the wind as salt, air, and the wafts of both fresh and stale fish swirl through your nose and inadvertently make you giggle. Not because your life got all figured out by looking at a tropical Jesus screen saver, but because it’s not figured out {even down to making that mean Thanksgiving turkey your mother and grandmother make..} but somehow looking at Him makes you laugh because you know He’s gonna figure it all out. What you do NOT know fades in to the background of the real show of Redeeming Love bursting from His joy filled eyes. Your job is just to get to the table He has prepared for you on that wild beach as the waves crash haphazardly with every unknown splash of salt water. That patch of sand with that Wild Man on the beach eating the fish He has prepared for me and keeping dialogue with a language of learning as my guide….that’s where the answers come into play.That’s why it’s time to toss a little more skin in the game. Risk doing it wrong to reach some real learning. Risk getting hurt to reach real healing. Time to let it fly and forget what lies behind. There are going to be some changes around here and a lot more consistency because I have this unquenchable desire that we lean so hard and heavy not on what we don’t know, but Who we DO KNOW! I spent the last 6 months reading through old journals and I’ve successfully escaped back through the wardrobe where God has reminded me why on earth I said “YES!” so enthusiastically all those years ago when I simply overheard a conversation…”Who will go for Us?” and I naively said “Me. Send me, I’ll go.” So, more ministry is coming. More learning, so much more learning is coming because I don’t want to stay stuck in what I don’t know, but grow to understand and live out more of a deeper knowledge and understanding of who Jesus is and what He knows. More devotionals. More Video studies. More speaking across multiple landscapes and to a variety of demographics. Deeper content. More consistency. And greater belief. Not so that we have more DOING, but greater BEING in Jesus. More of Breaking wide the Bread of Life and letting the crusty messy crumbs fly all over our beach blanket.Here’s the catch though: I can’t go at it alone. I just can’t. Will you toss a little more spiritual gumption in the game with me?“For what it’s worth…it’s never too late, or in my case too early, to be whoever you want to be. There’s no time limit. Start whenever you want. You can change or stay the same. There are no rules to this thing. We can make the best or the worst of it. I hope you make the best of it. I hope you see things that startle you. I hope you feel things you never felt before. I hope you meet people who have a different point of view. I hope you live a life you’re proud of, and if you’re not, I hope you have the courage to start all over again.”{F. Scott Fitzgerald}“Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.” {Hebrews 12:1-2}